The first lesson was not buying enough fabric. I originally intended to use the orange fabric I used in the lining to make the pockets and handle but changed my mind and used a blue batik, which I didn't have enough to make the two handles. I went to buy more fabric but they had ran out of it. I used a purple fabric for the handles hoping to match the violet on the mermaid's tail. It doesn't really match, but oh well.
The second lesson learned was to be careful what ruler you are using to measure zipper openings. I grabbed a June Tailor ruler that had a blue strip around the edges that added an additional 1/4 inch to any measurement. It made the zipper opening 1/4 inch too big all around the zipper opening. I fudged with it and made it work but it would have been easier if I noticed I was using the wrong ruler and used the correct ruler instead.
The third lesson I learned was to measure items intended for pockets. The long orange pocket had three divided sections in the pattern, and like a wise guy I thought I would keep it all open to fit my iPad. Not measuring how big my iPad was in relation to the measurement of the pocket, the pocket was too big and my iPad flopped right out of it. The pocket might work for diapers or clothes, but I keep thinking how lovely it would be if it was dived by three. I really regret this decision to not divide the pocket.
What I really like about this bag are the big pockets in the front. A standard bottle of water on the left almost gets swallowed. I will definitely make this bag again. Thinking off all beautiful coordinated fabrics to make it with is dizzying.
Thanks Geta for a wonderful bag pattern. I know I will do a better job next time with my lessons learned. Your instructions were fantastic!