I think this is the best thing I have made. Ever. It is a present for a 4 year old who lives in Australia, but we'll get to see him in May when he and his lovely mom and dad and shiny new baby brother are over in Blighty.
I don't know him that well as he's done most of his living in Oz, so I had to email his mom to find out what he likes - owls, octopuses, kangaroos and penguins are some of his favourite things, apparently.
The bag is the messenger bag from One Yard Wonders (I swear I should be sponsored by them by now, the number of bloody bags I've blogged about), and the octopus is made of orange fleece. I traced his outline from a library book of munchkins (Counting in the Sea, 1, 2, 3! It's very good :), although I had to do a bit of photocopy reducing first as he was quite big. I thought it would look better if he had some tentacles up front and some behind rather than being one flat piece, so I did two tentacley pieces first, and then overlayed the body piece after.
I marked his eyes on with marker and then satin stitched over the top. The bag is lined with some stripy cotton that was a remnant from somewhere.
I took my time with it, and I think that really helped. I'm often tempted to cut corners in order to finish stuff quickly, but I was very slow and steady, and as a consequence the bag is well made and my applique is neat. Huzzah!