Blithe Spirit backpack

I have a slight sewing magazine addiction… I blame Panda, he likes reading them. Recently I treated myself to Beautiful Bags, one of those not quite a magazine, not quite a book things. There are several bags in it that I want to make, but I started with the Blithe Spirit backpack by Debbie von Grabler-Crozier. I picked this because I thought my Mom would like it, and I needed a birthday present for her.

The instructions are good with lots of photos, so I thought it might be doable, but the downside is that it demands very specific wadding and interfacing. I didn’t have any of them, but I had some generic interfacing and some stuff that was like very heavy felt which I thought would give it some shape, so decided to give it a go. Not just because it turned out we were seeing my Mom a week earlier than planned, and I had a Sunday afternoon and two evenings left to start *and* finish it…

Here I am wearing it. It turned out okay! Not amazing, as the wadding-replacement was a bit too thick, but it works. I used a grey twill from the market as the base. The beach huts fabric came from Whitby a while ago from the little quilting shop on the hill – I saw the fabric and got a fat quarter to make into a bag. The grey checked fabric was something I got in a charity grab bag at a sewing show at the NEC (I think Crafts for Christmas last year) that found an ideal use.

The really great thing about the design, and what made me choose it, was the large number of pockets. Because pockets are brilliant! This was my first experience of making a zipped pocket this way, and the bag calls for three of them. I used fabric offcuts for the pocket insides, so the size depended on how much fabric there was. The one on the back underneath the straps is the right size for hiding a phone in.

The next pocket is hidden under the front flap, and is also zipped, giving some security. Inside there is one more zipped pocket, and one flap pocket. Don’t look too closely at the stitching inside…

The verdict was that my Mom loved it. She also promised not to look too closely at the wonky stitching, and not to use it in the wet incase it fell to pieces. Phew.


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