Lockdown, Uncategorized

Sanity Sewing #1

SingerMy mum taught me to sew when I was around 6 or 7 years old, by guiding me through making myself a skirt – by hand. It had an elasticated waist and was cut to the selvedge, so no need for a hem! Just a laboriously back-stitched centre back seam and a turn over around the top for the elastic. I wore it with pride for many years. The following Christmas, Santa brought me a gorgeous black Singer sewing machine dating from the 1880s. I loved it – and still do. It is hand-crank and straight stitch only, but I used it for making countless items of clothing for myself and for sewing Christmas and birthday gifts for friends and family for many years.

F and R 504As my skills progressed, so did my need for zigzag stitching and automatic reverse, so eventually my mum allowed me to use her Frister and Rossman 504, a machine that was state-of-the-art at the time.

JonesTime passed, and I used my mum’s machine to make my wedding dress, my bridesmaid’s dresses and the waistcoat my dad wore to my wedding. My soon-to-be Mother-in-law saw all this activity, and her wedding gift to us (me!) was a Brother Jones machine with plenty of whistles and bells. When the time came, I used it to make my children’s christening robe.

I am an active person, always on the go, and I find it difficult to sit still. Sewing is completely absorbing, and it has kept me sane whenever I’ve had too much time on my hands: following serious illness, recovering from injuries, following redundancies, and during the current lockdown.

JeaniusBags was born of the need to stay busy and raise funds for causes that matter to me. I will continue to sew during lockdown, and will continue to post bags out to clients for as long as the Royal Mail and my local Post Office (a very short walk from my home address, and on my daily exercise route) are operational.

People are still having birthdays (including me!) and special occasions. Please do take a look through my site and contact me with your orders. I’ll even gift wrap for a small additional fee.


Festive Gift Ideas

Stuck for affordable ideas of ethical gifts to give that will be easy on the planet?Try some of these suggestions – sorted according to budget.

You can contact us for more information or to place order via the website or via Facebook. Alternatively, come and visit us at St Margaret’s Church House (Prestwich) on 32 November, Lady Wilton Hall (Simister) on 30 November, or at Ski Rossendale on 15 December.

Remember – we also have reusable giftwrap!

Under £20

Under £10

£5 and under



Father’s Day

Do your Dad’s pockets always bulge with wallet, keys, loose change, tissues and countless other “essentials” he cannot possibly leave the home without? Is he always after space in your Mum’s bag for her to carry his stuff for him? Is it time he had a bag of his own?

Father’s Day falls on June 16 this year. Don’t be caught out – order his Man Bag now!

Does your dad do the grocery shopping? how about a denim shopping bag that will last forever and help save the planet?

Does your Dad carry his coins in one of those little plastic bags you get from banks? These pyramid coin purses will do the job!

Have you bought your Dad a bottle of something tasty but need some ethical gift-wrap? How about one of these?

If it’s Dad’s job to walk the dog, how about a bag specifically designed for the purpose, with room for a roll of poo-bags, doggy treats, keys and wallet:

Not seen what you need? have a look at our Denim Collection and Tech Bags for more inspiration!


Why do items labelled “Handcrafted” cost so much?

Although few people are direct enough to explicitly ask this question, many do so through raising their eyebrows, quickly replacing the item they were holding, and walking away muttering about how the fabrics don’t cost anything near that amount.

Well, it’s not just about the fabrics you can see, although of course they need to be factored in! Bags and wallets usually need for more of the lining fabric than you might think, especially if pockets or credit card slots are involved. The exterior and lining fabric pieces each needs to be interfaced, and between the inner and outer layers there is often a stabiliser to give your bag structure.

Sometimes I make bags to my own design, but more often I make (or base my bags on) patterns designed and drafted by professional designers.

This week I made a Necessary Clutch Wallet (NCW). The pattern was designed by Janelle MacKay of Emmaline Bags, and the process began by actually purchasing the pattern pieces. Next was the task of choosing appropriate fabrics for the purse – in terms of colour, weight, texture, and blend. This took longer than you might think. After that it I had to cut the outer fabric, lining pieces, interfacing and stabiliser pieces, fuse then all together, and select appropriate clasps and zips. That done, I was ready to begin construction, Here are a couple of videos to illustrate the process:


Mothering Sunday

This year, Mothering Sunday falls on 31 March, and it will be with us before we know it! Are you ready? Here at JeaniusBags we have simple gives for much loved mothers (and grandmothers!) to suit pocket-money budgets.

Have a look at these examples – please remember that all prices exclude P&P.

Up to £20

Classy Cool Clutch Bags – £20

Zip N Go laptop bag – £20

Roma toiletry bag – £18

Ruffled and Ready kiss-clasp bag – £12

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Up to to £10

Covered notebook – £10

Denim totes – £10

Denim Sling Bag – £10

Groovy Glasses cases – £8

Cross-body Denim pocket bags – £8

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Up to £5

Shopping totes – £5

Zippered ID Purses – £5

Drawstring bags – £4

Makeup bags – £4

Pyramid Pouch – £4

Pencil cases – £4

Card holders – £3

Produce bags – £3

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Stuck for Gift Wrap ideas? Check these out!

Bottle bags – £4

Large gift bag – £5

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Please visit our website to see our full range of bags!