This summer I created a little handbag for quick outings or fancy parties perhaps… I love sewing into wool, so that’s what I used as the fabric of the bag, just so I could do some wool embroidery on top of it as well as sewing it together.

Starting wool embroidery by Hanna Andersson aka iHanna

It’s been a long time since I made a bag, or even crafted. Or rather, I felt like crafting has been far from my mind for a long time, so lately I’ve been trying to get back to it. Cast on for a knitting project, done some embroidery and also started a hand-sewing project for myself, just to make things again. I just to make things with a fever that burning hot inside me.

These days I’ve lost speed and urgency, and everything moves in slow-motion. That’s okay too, but since I missed crafting, I knew it was time to give myself space for some projects. Some with an end-goal, others for just the love of moving my hands and making stuff. But back to the bag project…

Starting wool embroidery by Hanna Andersson aka iHanna

I took a piece of thick, black wool felt and started laying out applique pieces on top of the surface. I wanted to create something feminine but not too girly, so I opted for a big iHanna flower with on a stem with some lush green leafs. At the top I added a kind of garland border, or scalloped border might be the correct name for it.

I embroidered around each of the felt pieces to attach them, using a pearl cotton thread (my favorite kind). Lastly I also sewed on some shimmery sequins, just because.

A hand-made wool embroidered handbag by Hanna Andersson aka iHanna

I really enjoy sewing into this soft material and decorating it according to my own personal taste. I debated with myself weather or not to keep the backside blank or to add something to it, but then I couldn’t resist the urge to add words to this embroidery. I looked for artists and songs I know my friend likes, and found a phrase I wanted to use. It’s both poetic and uplifting, which is what a black little handbag needs I think.

Backside of wool embroidered handbag by Hanna Andersson aka iHanna

The words are by the Swedish artist Thstrm from a song called Bevpna dig med vingar: Bevpna dig med vingar, bevpna dig med sng, bevpna dig med allting som du lngtat och drmde om en gng. In my translation that would mean something like:

Arm yourself with wings,
arm yourself with song,
arm yourself with everything you dreamt of and longed for once.

Nice, right?

Inside of wool embroidered handbag by Hanna Andersson aka iHanna

When the embroidery part was finished, I made inner pockets and lined the bag with a black and white fabric, and added my label to the inside for a professional finish. You close the handbag with a zipper, and it fits a good soft bound book, your wallet and a cell phone perhaps. Just what you need for a fika in town, perhaps.

It’s been sent of as a birthday gift to my friend, who said she liked it, so that’s good.

Junk journal as a birthday card made by iHanna

Instead of a card I also added in a little junk journal type book, with most of the pages filled but some blank for notes.

Making this and sending it of felt very satisfying to me, and I do want to do another bag soon. What do you think?