It was time to amend the situation. So I set to the task last night. The girls had a friend here for a sleepover so the sitting room was out of bounds anyway. The sewing machine provided ample company and entertainment.
A few weeks ago the lovely Ange gave me some black Essex linen and I chose to use this in the beach bag. I dithered for ages about what to do to add a little 'interest', and eventually let the lining fabric lead the way. I have a stash of lots of small bits of fabric, but not so many big ones, so deciding on the lining fabric was easier due to the more limited choice.
This is what I ended up with -
I cut the panels at 18" square. As stated, the outside is Essex linen. The lining is It's a Hoot. I used scraps of green corduroy and Stof pink linen to make an outside pocket. It's all stitched together with Aurifil 50w in charcoal. I made up the pattern as I went along, as I am known to do.
There is loads of room inside. I fit in two beach towels, swimsuits, googles, etc. and there was still more than ample room to add more stuff. The outside pocket is about 10" deep - I actually stuffed some swimsuits under the sunscreen and sunglasses case so that they could appear in the photo shoot. Things shouldn't not fall out of there too easily.
I am chuffed to bits with this quick make. And I will feel much smarter on the beach too. I am that little bit more prepared for our holidays. All we need is sunshine while we are away so we actually get the weather to take this to the beach. Fingers crossed.