You will need* 1m main fabric, at least 137cm wide (we used Cape Stone, ref CP7, £95 per metre, De Le Cuona)
*0.5m velvet fabric for letter (we used Lido, ref 6340112, £49.90 per metre, Casamance)
* 2.5m cord (£2.32 per metre, VV Rouleaux)
* 2 pompoms (£2.16 for two, VV Rouleaux)
* Tacking thread
* Matching thread
1) Cut a 130cm wide by 95cm long rectangle in main fabric. Draw out a 40cm high letter on a piece of newspaper, cut out and use as a template to cut your velvet letter.
2) Wrong sides facing, fold the main fabric in half by bringing the two short edges together. Allowing for a 2.5cm seam down one side and along the bottom, position the letter centrally across the width around 20cm from the bottom. Pin in place all round through one layer of main fabric only, open out the fabric then tack. Remove pins.
3) Use buttonhole or zigzag stitch to appliqué the letter, carefully machine stitching over all the raw edges. Remove tacking.
4) Open out the fabric and re-fold and pin, this time with right sides facing. Starting 8.5cm from the top of the raw edge side, machine stitch taking a 2.5cm seam, working all down the side and continuing along the bottom. Tack along the 8.5cm of unstitched seam line. Remove pins and trim and press open seam allowances.
5) To make a channel for the cords, turn down 12.5cm along the top and pin and press along the fold. Turn the raw edge under by 2.5cm and pin and press again. Removing pins as you go, machine stitch all round the top edge three times: once at 5mm from the top edge; once at 4cm from the top edge and once 2mm from the turned under edge.
6) Carefully tease open the seam to reveal the tacking between the 4cm stitching line and the 2mm stitching line. Remove the tacking to create openings for threading the cord (see main illustration).
7) Cut a 2.4m length of cord and push a large safety pin carefully and securely through one end. Fasten the pin. Push the safety pin into one of the channel openings at the top of the sack. Tease the pin along the channel, taking the cord with you as you go and gradually working the fabric over the pin as you push it along. Continue working all round the top of the sack until the pin appears at the opposite channel opening. Pull out the pin and continue pulling through the cord until you have an equal amount at each end - check by smoothing out the fabric along the channel so that there is no ruching.
8) Tie the cords together with a loose knot 15cm from the channel openings. Tie the pompoms in place around the loose knot and tighten to secure in place. Knot the cords together again, this time 5cm from the cut ends.