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ballet bag

When we showed up for Bees first ballet class last year, each little girl proudly carried in her tap shoes and ballet shoes in little bags. Most of these bags were pink satin (no surprise) and most involved bright pink sparkles and fur trim. I am still easing my way into the world of little girls and their love for pink and sparkly, so I told Bee we would make a bag.. and though it wouldn't be bedazzled in hot pink glitter, it would still be cool.

We used the Drawstring Travel Bag pattern from Heather Ross' book Weekend Sewing, which has cute boxed corners. For the R, I followed the applique techniques Heather uses on another project in the book, the Patchwork Trimmed Baby Blanket. (Be warned that some letters are trickier than others, you're in luck if you named your child Lily!)

Since Bee goes to ballet class with her cousin, we made one for her as well. I love seeing these two cute girls march into class each week with their matching bags.

The ballet bag works really well for us. The shoes go right back inside after class and the bag lives in Bee's bottom drawer, alongside her tights and leotard, so when it's time for class everything is in one place.

I love watching these girls dance in their black leotards. Their class is getting more serious now, with lots of barre work. (Bee sometimes asks her dad to write an R on one hand and an L on the other so she can remember her right and left.) Ballet is so beautiful, even performed by 5 year olds... And don't get me started on the tap dancing.. ridiculously cute!

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Reader Comments (16)

I love this idea. I have a 12 year old who would love a version of this bag. And like you, I am a complete sucker for a tap routine!! Just gorgeous.

01.26.2011 | Unregistered CommenterBeth Cregan

we were lucky enough to buy a pair of tap shoes for our little girl in a flea market in Paris - guess who is learning tap this year? i can't wait! you've certainly made lovely little bags - i decided a few years ago that each of our four children should have a special birthday drawstring bag, with their letter of the alphabet on the front - it sure saves wrapping paper, and hopefully will be kept for many years to come.

01.27.2011 | Unregistered Commenterkim

The bags are lovely! I have that book too, and while there are no little girls in my life anymore (mine are 21 & 26), I think I'll make a few as gift bags! By the way, isn't it cute that the girls' initials are R & L and your daughter is learning her Right and Left?

01.27.2011 | Unregistered CommenterRose

I love that sweet bag!

Someday she will be grown up and look at that well loved bag and remember her tap days. :)

01.27.2011 | Unregistered Commenterstacey

oh, there is nothing more ridiculously cute than watching little girls TAP DANCING! it kills me. It is one of the joys of being a mother of girls... a compensation for all the drama. :)

01.27.2011 | Unregistered CommenterLynne

Adorable bag! I remember when my ballerina was that little! Now she is eleven and just started working on pointe. Keep at it, it is so rewarding to watch them develop skills and discipline.

I just made my dancer a new ballet bag yesterday. It's quite a bit bigger than yours. They need more space for all their stuff when they progress. So fun!

01.27.2011 | Unregistered CommenterRobin

My 5-year-old just started ballet last Thursday. The girls are so beautiful practicing their moves - and so joyful. I just can't get enough photos! I'm not sure who enjoys the class more - me or my daughter...well, definitely my daughter. But we both are smiling every minute.

01.27.2011 | Unregistered CommenterRosemarie

I know that everything you do is cute but these are beyond. thinking about sticking my daughter in ballet now ...: )

01.27.2011 | Unregistered Commenterwide open spaces

I love the last pictures of the girls all lined up by the barre's! The second from left looks like a proper like ballet dancer with her bun on the back of her head too, so cute :D

01.27.2011 | Unregistered CommenterSammi

Too darn cute - both the bags and the girls!

01.27.2011 | Unregistered CommenterSteph

darling bags! I use to make ones like these when I was in middle school---but without the cute applique!

also, you might know this trick already, but when I was learning the difference between left and right, I would make a L with my left hand (using pointer finger and thumb when palms are down)---and your right hand can't make an L facing in the correct direction. but take caution teaching this to your little ballerina---it might be more of an impeding trick as I still make an left-hand L when in a crunch!

01.28.2011 | Unregistered Commenterlauryl

The bags are adorable. I had forgotten about that pattern. I need to pull that book out again!

01.29.2011 | Unregistered CommenterRegina

Thanks for the trip down memory lane. I had a drawstring bag similar to this when I took ballet and tap at that age. Mine was made out of denim (maybe some of my mother's old jeans?) and had a beautiful embroidered ribbon (a sort of Scandinavian floral motif) down the middle. I was so sad when my shoes became too large to fit in it any more. My mom cut off some of the ribbon for me and I still have it among my sewing materials 30-ish years later.

01.29.2011 | Unregistered CommenterT2

I love my daughter's ballet class! Wish I could dance along... I also made her bag, and agree -- so easy, it keeps everything in place. And don't they look beautiful, in their little ballet outfits with those still big heads? So cute...

01.31.2011 | Unregistered CommenterEsther

Cute bags! To keep my 3 kids organized, we have developed a bag system for all the activities--piano bag for piano music, pool bag, basketball bag, etc. Off season bags get recycled for the current activity. It can make for a crowded closet, but the ease in which they just grab their bag makes up for it. Oh, and our bags aren't as cute as yours, usually some kind of boat bag or duffle.

02.5.2011 | Unregistered Commentermeanders

oh how adorable. My little miss has just started ballet this week. I'm not sure who's more excited - her or me!!
I've popped over from Emma's blog Cinderella at Brindabella... Thanks for sharing!

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