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Specifically, I am again looking for The Perfect Bag(s). As we are traveling to Japan, and keeping it light, I'm taking one suitcase and one carry-on on the plane. I also have need of a daypack of some sort, unless I can manage to get a carry-on small enough that will work as both (hah!). Ideally, with a daypack, I could shove it into the carry-on or suitcase for the flight over and just use it when walking around.

I don't need suggestions on the suitcase, but the carry-on and theoretical daypack have me trying to figure out what I want and what I can get.

Carry-on: Should have two padded shoulder straps. I have back problems already, and carrying a heavy bag on one shoulder leads to ouchiness. Needs to fit under an airplane seat: W22" × H16" × D10" Ideally it would also have that panel on the back that allows you to fit it down over the handle of a rolly suitcase if you don't want to wear it. Multiple compartments would be nice: my current one has one big compartment and I dislike it. Will be holding camera, lens, GoPro, steadicam mount, a small bag of toiletries currently allowed on planes, change of underwear in case of baggage getting lost, Kindle, iPad, migraine meds, and a couple of trashy magazines because I always buy trashy magazines in airports.

Daypack: Preferably two padded shoulder straps (see back problems note above). Ideally it would fake (after the straps were tucked in or taken off) looking like a much nicer bag. It will carry one (1) DSLR camera body attached to THIS LENS*, and various small accessories, one (1) GoPro and various accessories including a handheld steadicam mount**, one (1) wallet and one (1) passport. I reallllllllllly don't want it to look like a backpack. I can't tell you why; I just don't like carrying backpacks around. And, really, it won't be carrying ALL of that all the time: I probably won't carry my big camera with me on some of our trips around the city, and just rely on my phone camera or the GoPro for snapshots.

* by hook or by crook I will have that lens before we leave as it replaces the TWO I have to carry around now for close up and zoom shots and switching lenses quickly is a bitch.

** which I will never actually use but if I don't bring it I'll wish I had. I'm not sure if it's this one or not--we didn't pay that price--but it's right about that size.

telophase: (Near - que?)
So I have this urge to make bags and I'm working out patterns. Here's my first successful one:

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At any rate, I've hit Hobby Lobby and grabbed some of their sale calicoes to mess about with, including one which is definitely Japanese and one which I think is Chinese (Er, yeah, anime convention audiences is sort of what I'm aiming at), and figured I'd ask if anyone could read it well enough, provided it's not just gibberish someone composited in Photoshop, to get the gist of what it is: is it a poem, random tattoo-book kanji/hanzi thrown together, an ad for a brothel in Macau*, etc.

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I also have one with music on a staff on it, bought because it goes with the fat quarters I bought yesterday that have piano keys and musical instruments on them. :) I kind of want to play it to figure out if it's a familiar piece of music or if it's musical gibberish but it's too advanced for me at the moment. Does it look familiar to anyone? (I'm leaning towards gibberish, because I don't even know if it's upside down. :D)

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And I leave you with a picture of the flap of a failed bag (it was a test bag anyway, hence the crappy cloud pattern) that has a cute kitty face on it.

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* Which, I have to admit, I would find kind of awesome.
telophase: (Near - que?)
So ... would there be any interest if I made a few of these Buttercup Bags out of kimono scraps* and sold them on Etsy? Because I mmmmay have just bought a license to do so.**

* The scraps I can source aren't quite the size of a fat quarter, because kimono pieces are 14" wide, so I'd probably have to make the front and back different colors (or different fabrics), or piece them together in patchwork. And I'd probably make a couple out of regular fat quarters first, just to get the hang of it.

** It's ten bucks. And if I don't get around to either making or selling, I don't begrudge supporting the creator. :) You can find a bunch of different versions of it on Google Images. ***

*** And it all started because I was looking for ideas for patterns for bento bags, since my favorite one shrank in the wash and I have several boxes that are too big for normal bento bags, not to mention the days I just use plain old Gladware. I discovered this WHOLE NEW WORLD of handmade bags ... and much like kanzashi, while I don't actually use fancy bags, I now have a major desire to make them.

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