After reading too many blogs, some about sewing, but also about knitting and crochet, I was very tempted to take my hooks again. I settled on a granny bag, with some cotton thread from Rico Design (creative cotton aran). I found it in a shop in Bath called Wool.
To make this bag I crocheted 22 squares and linked them together as I went. It did require some thinking at the end, but it means there is no seam to sew.
The lining means that the bag looks more finished and things won't fall through the holes, like pencils (but then loose pencils would put carbon in the bag!).
The handle is shaped bamboo. I had it in stock and was worried it would stretch out but so far so good.
Enjoy your sewing.