Thursday, March 30, 2017

Mama's Got a Brand New Bag Idea


We have bags on top of bags tucked away in the pantry, in the kitchen, and even upstairs in unlikely places. They're very good compost containers; they make great wrapping paper for mail packages; these bags are the right everything for book covers. So why not actual books and covers, right?

I just picked up the remote to leave Seth Meyers in the dark 'cause he is so not funny, but that collection of pencils on his desk was reason to do a double take. The world has finally caught on to the re-hipness of pencils. Write on! The very idea is catching fire. I wonder how long it takes a pencil to burn. They're like micro logs with graphite centers. Does graphite burn? Hmm.

Oh wow. I'm not the only one to wonder. See? 

"I tried to burn a bunch of 8B pencil lead in a gas flame the other day. None of it actually caught fire, but being made of carbon (in the form of graphite) should cause it to burn, as graphite is essentially purified coal. What temperature is required to set it burning, and is extra oxygen required?"

1 Answer:  You have two problems.  

1.) pencil lead graphite is actually a graphite-clay composite.
2.) carbon does not sustain burning easily unless it is held at very high temperatures.
Pencil lead will not burn effectively for the first reason as clay is non-combustible and smothers any fire load. If you did have pure graphite to burn, a simple flame wouldn't be hot enough to combust it. You need to sustain temperatures of around 10002000 C in order for pure carbon to burn.
All thanks to Chemistry Stack Exchange.
So, if you're ever stranded on an iceberg with nothing but boxes of pencils and some matches, I suggest shaving before burning. Or never leave home without a tightly rolled bunch of Whole Foods Market bags, some pencils to journal the events that unfold, and a box of kitchen matches. Those long fire starter matches might be better. 
But anyway . . .

Some talented graphic designer upped the value of the simple, boring paper food bag with some simple designs. Both side panels are enhanced. Oh, joy! It just feels like a female artist is responsible, huh?


And who wouldn't be tempted to follow the instructions to "recycle" these little darlings made from recycled paper? You don't even have to think hard before you're humming, and cutting-folding-pasting and feeling good.


A little special thread, a needle, and an awl are about all you'll need to assist a pair of scissors. Well, that's all you'll need unless you're into sequins, beads, and paper doilies. I'm not overlooking the dyed in the wool clever mail artists out there. Y'all can make my efforts seem 100 percent pre-schoolish. Ahem. And that's okay. I don't pretend to be anything other than what I am. Yet paper cement and bookbinder's glue help, and before you know it, you've forgotten the aches and pains, the lack of decent daytime television, and having been abed for over a week and a half. Well, more in bed than out but who's nitpicking? I get to sit on the patio and soak up sunlight in between entertaining myself. I feel like a kid home from school with a cold or tonsillitis. Books and crafts are good medicine. Try it next time you're confined. You'll hardly mind.


So. Lining the unadorned side of the bag works wonders, and transforms drab into dapper! Cuteness counts, but craftsmanship isn't the mistress here. Neither is planning. You just go for it. The art takes shape on its own; you're just the means to the end. 


Things happen. Patterns repeat. 





Stuffing is just as much fun. Flow is always better than a life raft, unless you're adrift at sea, in a leaking life raft, surrounded by sharks, out of sun screen and drinking water and your foot is bleeding. Even so, in the end you have to decide who gets one! Unless you keep it for yourself.



13 comments:

  1. Oh wow. What a great idea, tutorial and beautiful end result all in one! Thank you and welcome back!

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    1. Hey! You've been on my mind a lot lately, and then I found your Christmas card last night inside a Target bag. Such moments are a part of being me. I am such a bag lady, so why not make bag lady art, right? I'm pleased to know you like the end results. Thank YOU. And thanks for the welcome.

      Thanks for commenting. And for understanding.

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  2. I love it! You are so creative! Glad to have you back in action. I've been missing your blog posts and wondering where you were.

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    1. Aw, goodness me. Thank you. I blame the pain meds, the muscle relaxers, the cat, spring, lovely paper bags, and boredom. Oh. And crooked spine that want to be the boss. Thank you for saying hey. It's too quiet up in here on days like the last week or so. A body can be blue only so long before even paper bags look good. :) I shouldn't sound like I'm complaining since down time means I get to read all the blogs I follow and lurk around. Thanks for the entertainment. I try to leave comments but too often fail to find words I haven't used to death.

      Thanks for thinking of me. I fall into the darkness on occasion. I can't always prevail. My contact with others such as you help like medicine, and before I know it I'm laughing and feeling optimistic.

      Be well.

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  3. you are so talented and funny and I have missed you . take care and stay well and yes the sun can be our friend indeed . be safe .

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    1. You're such a dear. You're too kind to the likes of me. LOL. 've missed you too. Your letter came on Friday. Thanks. My back gets older right along with the rest of me and no one ever warned that scoliosis doesn't die--it outlives you. :) I've seen photos of mummies that have crooked spines, hunched backs, a short leg, a high hip . . . And all I can do is shake my head and grin.

      I will if you will. ;)

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  4. So cute and fun...Unless it's on a life raft, adrift at sea, surrounded by sharks....Smelling blood in the water... 😂

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  5. So cute and fun...Unless it's on a life raft, adrift at sea, surrounded by sharks....Smelling blood in the water... 😂

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    1. LOL! You've got me laughing out loud for real here. I wrote that while watching The Blue Planet and those sharks and killer whales got to me. We never truly know what gets stuffed into our subconsciousness, do we? LOL! Thanks for commenting and making me laugh.

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  6. Oh my! Love this idea...I will have to search out some decent paper bags for this one, or perhaps stamp my own with a potato or two!

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    1. You're a gem! There's such potential in recycling, right? Clever you for thinking of making your own! I'm following in your tracks. Thanks!

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  7. Beautiful bag and papers! Love the transition into a "silk purse." :)

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    1. Thank you. You're very clever! :)

      I'd go nuts from the joy of having my designs on a bag. Such simple pretties deserve to be renewed, shared, and passed on.

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