This was my first try at any leatherwork and was completely unintentional. I bought the bag from Trader Bob because I needed one in a hurry and it was cheap. I found that a belt bag would suit my needs better than a shoulder bag, so I decided to cut the shoulder straps to make belt loops. This required disassembly to access the back for sewing and reassembly. I learned how to make a saddle stitch. Then I decided to bead the flap. This took several years. People would comment, “I see you did another inch!” Now that it was my every day rondy bag, it was too small, so once again disassembly and reassembly to put in gussets, which I made from the remains of the original shoulder strap. It has since done yeoman service.
- Buy what you need in the first place.
- The long beading needles are for loom work. They break on direct sewing.
- Bead on buckskin, never again on cowhide.
- Watch the contrast. The yellow and white blend too well.
- Stick to one design. The final top diamonds do look better than the bottom. I am the only one who often notices the changes.
- Bead sizes vary even when nominally the same. Adjust the number of background beads in order to align the pattern beads.