June 2010
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Secret Agent Kit

I put together this gift for my friend’s 7-year-old, who is very into spies and secret agent stuff. The bag is made from an old pair of my husband’s cargo shorts using this tutorial at Noodlehead, though I had to modify the size and shape a bit because I only had shorts to work with instead of pants. I also didn’t have any bias binding on hand, so I used brown piping along the flap edges, which looks just as good I think. I was a bit worried that it ended up looking more like a purse than a secret agent/adventure bag, but I’m told the birthday boy likes it!

The coolest thing in the kit is the “secret message decoder.” I’ve had this idea in the back of my head ever since seeing these secret message Valentine’s Day cookies, and when I was recently re-organizing a bunch of craft and sewing supplies, I came across this:

I don’t remember where I got it, I think it was included in a box of fabric/quilting supplies I got at a yard sale long ago. I do know that I’ve never used it for its intended purpose, which I’m guessing has something to do with evaluating the light/dark values of fabric. So I removed the cardboard frame and made a new one (cutting the red film in half so I could make another one for my own little secret agent).

You can write something in light blue ink or pencil, then scribble all over it with red ink. When you put the red plastic over it, the message is revealed!

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