Here is another one of my sewing projects as I’m slowly learning how to sew again. When I saw the tutorial for this bag from Maggie at Smashed Peas and Carrots I knew I had to make one for Will. A couple of years ago I made him a small bag to carry his trains around for entertainment when we went places like out to eat. He still loves trains, but has also taken a liking to Cars. I’ve been wanting to make him a bag to lug around his cars. This bag also would work well to take to the library to carry books.
He was pretty excited about his new bag, which to his dad’s dismay he calls his purse (what a corny smile, huh). This is probably because I have a messenger style purse I carry around. We’ll just go with it for now — I love that he really has no gender specified labels/role quite yet. In my book it’s okay for him to carry a purse, have a baby doll and watch old episodes of “My Little Pony” and “Care Bears”.
Messenger Style Bag Materials:
1/2 yd each of two different patterned fabrics (one for the bag and one for the lining)
1 yd of 1-inch belting for the strap
Small bowl or CD
Iron and Ironing Board
This is a pretty quick project. Maggie says it is a one-hour project. I would say this for the experienced sewer, but for me it took about twice as long. Still a quick project to complete in 2 hours!
Constructing the Front Flap
1) Cut one piece of each fabric to 7 x 13-inches long.
2) Place right sides together (like above)
3) Fold the two pieces in half (like a hamburger bun, not a hot dog bun, as I used to say when I taught)
4) Using a bowl cut off one rounded corner from the unfolded edge.
5) Open up the flap and sew around the curve of the flap (not the straight edge) at 1/2″ seam allowance. Using a pinking shears trim the excess fabric around the curve. Turn the flap right-side out and iron it flat. Last, sew at 1/4″ seam allowance around the curve of the flap.
Constructing the Body of the Bag
1) Cut two pieces measuring 14 x 14-inches from each piece of fabric (total 4 squares). Place the right sides of each fabric together (one set will be your lining and one set will be the outside of your bag). Sew together the two sides and bottom of the bag using a 1/2-inch seam allowance. Cut the excess fabric with your pinking shears.
2) With both sides still wrong-side out, pinch each corner at the bottom of the bag.
Measure down from the tip 1-1/2 inches and sew across.
Cut the excess fabric (tip) off using pinking shears.
You will do this two times each for both the lining and the outside of the bag.
3) To assemble the bag place the lining piece inside of the outer piece with right sides together.
4) Place the flap inside the bag so that the outer fabrics face each other and the lining fabrics face each other.
(So sorry I forgot to take a picture of this step)
5) Measure the belting so it fits your child. Place it at the side seam of the bag between the outer fabric and the lining. I copied Maggie’s measurement for the belting since Will is close in age to her little guy. We measured the belting at 30 inches in length.
6) Now sew around the top edge of your bag using a 1/2-inch seam allowance. Be sure that you catch the flap and the belting while going around. I sewed across the parts with the belting a couple of times to reinforce that area. Be sure to leave about a 4-inch opening somewhere on the top of the bag so you can turn it right-side out!
7) Turn your bag right-side out using the 4-inch opening. Fold the opening in and press with your iron. Now sew using a 1/4-inch seam allowance around the entire top of the bag. This also closes the 4-inch opening.
There you go! A new bag for all things boy! I may add a piece of velcro to the flap so it stays closed better. This seems to bother Will. I’ll get to it one of these days. Give the project a try, it is quite fun and simple!