If nerves are all that’s keeping you from giving Noodlehead's 241 tote a try, just go for it! This was the third purse that I’ve made and while it was the most complicated, it wasn't difficult. I can’t say it didn’t go off without a hitch, but it still turned out to be really cute. I’m excited to make more so I can improve my construction skills. The part that I had the hardest time with was sewing on the side panels without catching the seam of the bottom of the bag in the stitching, which made a little unintended pleat. (Did anyone else have this issue? Any suggestions?) But, you really can’t tell since there is a seam there anyways.
In making this purse, my husband's voice once again became like that little cartoon angel that sits on your shoulder and tells you what you should or shouldn’t do. My husband expects a lot of himself and other people. He believes in always doing your best work. However, I’m usually okay with brushing things off as “oh well, I’m new to this thing." For example, when I sewed on my very first zipper, I sewed it on very crookedly, well, kind of in a wave actually. I took it proudly to my husband and said, “Look, I sewed on my first zipper. It’s a little crooked, but that’s okay.” I was expecting a standing ovation, but he said, “Why is it crooked?”
Let’s just say he wasn’t confused as to why I sewed it on crookedly, he was confused as to why I hadn’t taken it off and done it again until I got it straight. I did redo the zipper and with only a little time and effort, it was much straighter. I’m glad he said something instead of just patting me on the back; though I’m sure I gave him a begrudging look at the time. Otherwise, that zipper would have always bothered me and whenever anyone would have given me a compliment on my bag, I know I’d end up saying, “Thanks! I made it. The zipper’s a little crooked though.” Isn’t that weird how we point out our mistakes before someone else can? I’m assuming I’m not alone!
So he’ll be proud to know that when I didn’t quite like the look of my top stitching, I just took out my seam ripper and started over. I’m trying to keep his voice in my head. It’s the voice that says (though these aren’t his actual words, thank goodness), don’t be lazy, do it right. Those are words that I need to hear often. I'm usually glad when I listen.