I hate things that are designed poorly. Even simple things like the hooks on the back of bathroom-stall doors. You know, the ones that you attempt to hang you coat on but it always slips off and falls onto the gross, germ-ridden public bathroom floor? Yeah, I get kind of irritated over stuff like that.
One thing I really don't like are pencil cases. I hate them. I remember buying a hard plastic one a while ago, and within two months it broke. I hate the zip-up fabric ones because the zipper won't open far enough for me to dig around and find the pen I need, so I always end up dumping everything out, and then I have to deal with all of my pens and pencils in my way. Plus, if I'm ever sitting at a drafting table, I can't lay out all of my pens or pencils.
I'm only a little anal and irritable... ;)
With that in mind, I decided to make my own, and here's what I came up with.
I was searching through my fabric, and picked a color scheme. I originally decided on the brown and green, and then as I was looking through my ribbon and found this spool with cute and colorful trees printed on it. I went with it and made the applique on the outside of the case match the ribbon print.
It only took a couple of hours from start to finish. It's 22 inches long by 9 inches wide. It holds 20 pens/pencils, plus 6 little containers of pencil led. There is batting between the inside and outside layers for padding and to protect the led from breaking if dropped. (Isn't it annoying to sharpen a pencil only for the led to keep breaking off? That's what happens when you drop a pencil on the floor. Total pet peeve of mine!)
I've had it for two years now, and I still love it.
But there are a couple of changes I would make to it:
1. Use button closures instead of tying bows with those ribbons every time I need to roll it up.
2. The smaller led-holding pockets don't work so well and the little containers that hold the various sizes and colors of led tend to slip out. Some elastic to hold them in place would probably do the trick.
With that in mind, I'm planning on making another pencil case soon. The new one I'll sell and I'll have one craft kit for it available for sale too.