Getting ready for Padstow…

Very much looking forward to Bolla Tay’s annual design fair in Padstow.  Just finishing off some final stitching before packing it all up ready for the show.

This year we will be joined by some fabulous designer-makers –  Damian Miles, Really Big Bubbles and Paper Pamela…  Check out their websites for a sneak preview and hopefully we’ll see you there.

 

Bolla Tay Poster 2017

Introducing Lydford…

Although I haven’t posted much so far this year, I’ve been working on a few designs behind the scenes.  I’ve recently finished creating the pattern for Lydford, a shoulder bag with twist lock closing, inside zip pocket and adjustable shoulder strap.

This handbag is made using 100% organic cotton canvas and has a navy blue pima cotton lining.  I’ve got a number of other fabrics lined up for this design too, so I’ll be adding those to my shop soon….

Full details, including price and dimensions, can be found on my shop.

Moorland Garden Fête

Once again the first part of the year has flown by and it has been far too long since I’ve posted any news, so it’s nice to let you know about a forthcoming fayre.

We’re looking forward to being at the Moorland Garden Hotel, Yelverton on Monday 1st May.  Always such a great day out at a really beautiful location, so if you’re in the area, come and enjoy all that the day has to offer….

 

Moorland Fete 2017 flyer

New commission… new design

Following my redesign of the Ashbury handbag a few months ago, I recently had the chance to play about with another of my favourite designs when one special lady asked me to resize the original Shelstone.  It’s great when someone asks me to do something I’ve been wanting to do for a while – it gets moved right to the top of my ‘to-do list’.

When I originally designed this handbag I had several sizes in mind; I started with the Shelstone, then enlarged it to make the Shelstone Weekend, then finally I wanted a smaller, more everyday version.  The lady for whom I created this already owns the Shelstone, so it was really useful to hear what dimensions ideally suited her for the new size.

Redrawing patterns always takes a fair bit of reworking to ensure the finished design looks and feels right.  It isn’t always a case of reducing everything by the same amount, but after a few mock-ups on some old sheets, I got the dimensions and proportions that worked for the style.

I love the fabric she chose; you may have noticed I love blue anyway (!), but the blues with the mint green flashes make this really eye-catching.

Ashbury hacks…..

Recently I was contacted by a lovely customer who had seen the navy and white spotty Ashbury on my shop and wanted this with a few changes.  She was after a slightly larger version of this bag, and wanted me to add in a few extra features.  She already has the Shelstone, and really liked the red trim and button pocket on that bag, and so wanted the same features on her Ashbury.  In addition to this, she also wanted an exterior zip pocket on the other side, which would sit on the side closest to her body.

The new Ashbury design makes for a really great size handbag. The larger zip opening and capacity makes it so useful and the adjustable strap means it can be worn on the shoulder or across the body to suit.  I made this with a red lining – navy and red is such a fabulously classic combination, I love it!

She then requested an Ashbury in the original size, with the same red trim and button pocket, but also wanted a zip patch pocket on the side closest to the body – really useful for tickets and essentials.  I loved lining up the spots to make sure it sat properly on the outside of the bag.

Any handbag you see on my shop can be customised to meet your wishes, whether it’s adding in extra pockets on the inside or outside, making it larger or smaller, different colourways, longer/shorter straps etc….. I’m happy to work with you to get all the details right and ensure you get the handbag that suits you.

May news….

We had a great time at the Moorland show a few weeks ago, thanks to all the people who came along.  Good to see a customer from the last show enjoying using her bag!

I had a new design in some new fabrics on show, these will be added to my shop soon.

Earlier this year I had a couple of orders from two different customers for the same design of bag.  They both wanted a Rippon and had completely different fabric choices.  It was lovely seeing what they chose and how different they were (one even matched their house décor and windowsill tiles, which is fantastic!).  The orange and black Rippon was the first time I’ve been asked for one colourway one side and the reverse on the other side, but a great way to get two looks for the price of one!

 

Now I’m looking forward to getting on with using this gorgeous fabric for a new order….

Fabric

Fabric!

 

Introducing Ashbury

A little while ago I set to work designing a new shoulder bag.  I wanted to create a design which was a useful everyday-size handbag; it needed to have a zip closing, inside pockets and an adjustable shoulder strap (so it could be worn on the shoulder or across the body).

After some sketches, pattern drawing and a prototype, I designed Ashbury, and I’m pleased to share my first photos with you…..  this purple-based one sold at the first show and the yellow and grey one sold last week!  (click to enlarge the photos).

As with all my handbags, this has the same quilted feel – the main fabric is backed with sew-in interlining, quilting fabric, a layer of cotton, and then the lining is backed with sew-in interlining as well…… These layers give the bag strength, help them keep their shape and also makes them incredibly soft.

I’ve created another one of this design in a different fabric (with more to follow in the new year) and this is available from my online shop.

As with all my handbags, I take commissions for bespoke handbags, so if you would prefer this, or any other design, in a different fabric, or would prefer inside zip pockets, a wider shoulder strap etc, then please don’t hesitate to contact me.

 

Festive Shows…..

It’s approaching that time of year when all the festive shows start…..  It’s a great opportunity to bag (no pun intended!) an original gift and browse all the fabulous handcrafted stalls.

We’re looking forward to being at the Moor Things Festive and Lovely Show at The Moorland Garden Hotel in Yelverton on Saturday 7th November.

Stalls open at 11am, so hopefully see you there….

Moor Things Festive and Lovely Flyer

Moor Things Festive and Lovely

New Huccaby available!

New Huccaby available from the Handmade by Ellie Shop!

September has been a busy time with a number of commissions keeping me busy, so it’s nice to catch up and update some items on my shop.  A few months ago I posted a photo of this fabric…

Fabric!
Fabric!

and I was really looking forward to cutting it all up and creating something with it.  As soon as I saw these fabrics, I thought they would suit a Huccaby satchel – the size of the print would fit the shape of the bag nicely and the lovely rich blue would make for beautiful complimentary buckle tabs and lining fabric.

So here it is –

This is currently the only Huccaby available in this fabric, so it truly is unique!  It is available to buy from the Handmade by Ellie shop.

Click on the picture to enlarge and scroll – 

Click here for all the details, including prices, dimensions and information on the bag’s construction.

Additional features – As well as an adjustable shoulder strap, this satchel has a large inside, fully lined (and interlined) zipped pocket and features high quality metalware which looks lovely –

Click on the picture to enlarge and scroll – 

Clutch bags now available!

I had a fabulous few days in Padstow with the Bolla Tay girls earlier this month.  Thanks to all those who came by to see us, it was lovely to meet new customers as well as customers from previous years……  I hope you all enjoy your new handbags!

I promised I would be adding more to my online shop after its launch a few weeks ago, so here are the first new editions…. These clutch bags are the result of my collaboration with designer C F McEwan.   They are made using her special silk and hemp fabric and they feel gorgeous!

For all the information, please click here to visit to visit my shop.

If you are interested in purchasing the matching scarves, please click here to contact Clare to check availability.  Oh, and Clare currently has a summer sale on some of her gorgeous scarves…..

 

Exciting News – Online Shop Now Open!

Click here to visit the shop!

Hi everyone – exciting news!

My online shop is now open and offers a range of Handmade by Ellie bags to view and buy securely online.

Please enjoy having a browse and let me know what you think of the experience; all feedback and input welcome.

I will be adding to the range in due course, so keep your eye out for exciting new additions.

Happy shopping and if you enjoy handbags, spread the word!

Ellie

Click here to visit the shop!

 

A few finished photos…..

(Finally) a few finished photos of Huccaby!

After much (much!) delay, here are the finished photos of the 60s-inspired Huccaby from my previous post.  Things have been somewhat hectic recently, which is great, but it has once again meant that my blog is a little bit behind!

Click on the images to enlarge…..

For all the information on Huccaby bags, including price and dimensions, please see the Shoulder Bags by Ellie page.

60s-inspired Huccaby

I love it when I get asked to make something I know I would LOVE to keep.   This happened with this latest design for Huccaby.  I have always loved this fabric; it makes me smile because it is such a happy print.  So it was with great pleasure that I began to turn it into a satchel.

This was a really fun commission to make – I love this choice of fabric and the gorgeously rich purple to compliment the fabulous colours of the main design.

For this particular bag, I was asked to make the pattern slightly bigger – it needed a bigger interior zip pocket and to be slightly deeper so it could carry certain things.  This was not a problem at all, and it’s great to personalise each bag to an individual’s requirement.

Click on the images to enlarge…

The first photo shows a cross-section of one of the main panel pieces; here you can see the main fabric print, then a layer of sew-in interlining, a layer of quilting fabric and finally a layer of backing cotton to keep the quilting fabric in place.  All these layers give the bag a lovely quilted feel and helps it retain its shape as well as making it stronger.

The second photo shows all the main and lining pieces ready and waiting to be turned into Huccaby…..

Introducing Shelstone Box Top!

So, after redesigning my original patten, here is the finished Shelstone Box Top with its brand new zip top…..

Click on the gallery to enlarge and scroll through –

I decided to make the zip long enough to start and finish on the side panels, rather than just being the length of the top of the bag, (hence the box top zip closing).   This makes it even more practical and improves its functionality.

After being asked to create this Shelstone, I was then asked by the same lady to create another to be worn on the left shoulder instead of the right.  This makes a difference with zip and pocket placement (you want the zip facing the front on whichever shoulder you wear the bag, so the zip is easily accessible; similarly, the inside phone pocket, situated on the inside side panel, needs to be at the front of the bag).  All these requirements can be adapted so the bag is personal to how you use it.

For all the details, including prices and dimensions, please visit the Weekend and Travel Bags page.

Oh and did you notice – IT’S SNOWING ON MY BLOG!!!!!!!!  Very exciting!

Redesigning Shelstone…

With all the ‘work’ (when is sewing ever work?!) for Christmas going on, I’ve been a bit behind with updating news of my projects.   I was really excited to be asked to adapt an existing pattern for one of my favourite handbag designs so far.  The Shelstone was originally designed with a snap-set closing, as shown below, but I was asked to create one with a box-top zip.

Creating one with a zip closing had been on my (rather long!) ‘to-do’ list, so it wasn’t yet something I had got round to completing, until a certain lovely lady requested one.  It was then moved from half way down my list to the very top, and so began the pattern redrawing and redesigning.

Adapting an existing pattern isn’t always straightforward, so I literally took it back to the/my drawing board to work out what pieces needed to be adapted and what new pieces I needed to create….

…. fortunately throughout some of the (minor) head-scratching I had some of the very best advice on hand…..

So, after the pattern drawing was finished, I then started constructing all the pattern pieces and assembling the panels ready for creating the new version of Shelstone ….

Shelstone pattern pieces

Redesigning Shelstone

…finished photos of the new design to follow….