WELCOME, Helen Angharad Henley!
This month, we sit down with Helen Angharad Henley, mother of three, handbag designer, self-proclaimed “compulsive maker,” and author of newly published Tote-ally Amazing Bags: 30 quick and easy bags to make for all occasions. Helen lives and works in Wales where she designs, makes, and sells her sewing patterns and handbags. She blogs her stitching endeavours at angharadhandmade.blogspot.com and sells her bags online at angharad handmade. 1. What’s your craft?
I am a compulsive stitcher, and enjoy all kinds of needlework from bag making to quilting; I’m never without a project or three on the go!
2. What project would you consider an all-time best?
I’m quite fickle when it comes to favourites–one day it might be a herringbone tweed bag and the next a hand-quilted scrap quilt. For me the pleasure is all in the finishing touches, whether it be a pretty row of Liberty tana lawn covered buttons, or a neat line of topstitching.
3. What project would you consider an all-time worst?
I’ve had some cracking craft-fails over the years, but I know my husband would vote for the lederhosen I made for him out of some old 70s curtains when we were students. He was forced to wear them through central London on the way to a fancy dress Sound of Music sing-along with friends, and I don’t think he’s ever quite recovered from the experience!
4. What tool or material could you not live without?
I couldn’t be without my rotary cutter, rulers and mat. I find that cutting out is the most tedious part of a project as I’m generally itching to get needle and thread to fabric, so anything which can speed up the process, and introduce a bit more accuracy to boot, is a winner in my book.
5. If you could have any superpower, what would it be?
I’d love to have the power to accomplish several tasks at once – that way I could be stitching up a bag or two whilst simultaneously helping with the children’s homework and making a cup of tea.
Follow Helen’s stitching adventures on her blog, angharadhandmade.blogspot.com.
Tote-ally Amazing Bags includes a wide variety of 30 bag designs and full-sized patterns and instructions, guiding beginners and intermediate sewers through all the possible incarnations of the tote bag. Available now at your favorite bookseller:
Check out our new title in November!