Slings and arrows: first make for 2019

I never thought these words would emanate from my mouth, but my first make for 2019 is a bag for a bow and arrows! Yes, Mark got archery stuff for Christmas and, as he likes to look after every one of his possessions, he wanted a bag for it all. I can do that easily can’t I?

I did a bit of a drawing,  a bit of measuring and went stash diving for some fabric. I came up with a whole roll of upholstery fabric that I had intended using to cover my sofas but decided that it frayed too much and had the propensity to catch threads. I thought I’d make a practice bag, which I would quilt. I was going to use Soft and Stable as the padding, which I can buy from My Fabricology in Perth (and would recommend for most bags), but I worked out that it would cost me roughly $150 for this bag so I used some strange stuff called “headliner” which is actually used for covering the inside of car roofs. It is suedey sponge and the suede-like finish meant that I didn’t need to go to the trouble of doing a lining.

I needed a long zip and found one that was 185cm long (!) which was in a recent $20 job lot from the op-shop. The problem was that it was jammed. Out came the lanolin spray and the zip now works perfectly.

Right. I had a plan, the fabric, the lining, and the zip, all that was left was the execution. This is the biggest bag I’ve ever made. We actually have two bows, multiple arrows, a quiver, and bits and bobs like finger and arm guards, all of which need to be housed in the bag.

In spite of the plan and the measurements there was an element of winging it with this one. I attached the outer fabric to the headliner with rows of quilting stitches. I only went one way as I didn’t want the bag to be too stiff.

I had been going to bind all the seams, but my poor machine was struggling rather. I bound the bottom seam, seen here with the bow in situ, but all the other seams are overlocked. IMG_0530

In the background is my roll of headliner which I found in an op-shop without actually having a clue what it was. It’s pretty handy stuff, and I intend doing a comparison between it and Soft and Stable in a future post.

This was an enormous bag to wrangle under my machine and I needed a lot more room. I knocked a lot of stuff on to the floor making this one! I had to get a shot of that long zip. I would love to know its history. Both ends were cut off but it didn’t look like it had been used.


In retrospect I don’t think I needed such a long zip. I had a notion that I wouldn’t be able to get the bow in and out of the bag unless I could open it right out.

I made a zip pull from some rubber tubing I bought at Bunnings. I was going to knit a necklace from this, but that idea went nowhere. This stuff makes lovely zip ties, it can be knotted in interesting ways and the ends fused together with a bit of heat.


I added a pocket for things like the arm and finger guards. The pocket is big enough for snacks too! I used a snap to secure it rather than another zip.


Part of the present was a target which is called a “rag bag”. It’s a bag which gets stuffed with rags, and I obviously used all my fabric scraps. I really love having a proper purpose for my scraps.


I am going to have a go at making my own target from a council green waste recycling bag which looks almost the same as this – without the targets obviously. We had such fun playing about with this set, and these arrows represent my first attempt at shooting the target. I think I got more into the poor tree. The ones on the ground hit the target but didn’t stay in – that’s my story and I’m sticking to it!


14 thoughts on “Slings and arrows: first make for 2019

  1. This bag is perfect! What a fun you must have had.
    The headliner sounds interesting and all the better you didn‘t have to line it.

  2. Wishing you a year of outrageous fortune! I couldn’t resist…. isn’t it wonderful to use your skills to solve a problem? My family is discovering some of that possibility, so now I wait for my husband to ask “do you think you could make…?”.

  3. Hi this is just the sort of project my husband would drop on my plate always a challenge but so satisfying when it works. Great job.

    Re the zip it may not be anything special in the UK you can buy zip off a roll for upholstery projects. They sell you as many zip pulls as you want.

  4. Great bag and the headliner does sound interesting. All I can remember about archery was a bruised arm, yes it was holding it wrong but had a great time one I got the hang of it.

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