I learned to sew in 4-H, as organized by my mother, when I was about 10, maybe younger. The first real project–after lots of sewing on paper without thread–was a drawstring bag. Twenty years later, here I am making drawstring bags again:

These are shoe bags and a lingerie bag, all meant to help with packing–so your packed clothes don’t get dirtied by your shoes and you can tell what’s been worn and what hasn’t. They were for my sister-in-law’s birthday last Saturday, which I forgot to mention here; she’s been traveling a lot so I thought this would be practical.

I have to admit that I didn’t remember my first 4-H bag training for these. I had to use an online tutorial to walk me through the first one, but it all came back for the next two. (Granted, it’s a bag, not rocket science, but I tend to cling to directions so I was happy to just cut and sew by the end.)