Tutorial Tuesday: Messenger Bag

Tutorial Tuesday: Messenger Bag

Hey! It's Amber from Crazy Little Projects stopping in to say hello and teach you to make a messenger bag. Please come visit me at my blog or be my friend on facebook

I think I have a thing for sewing new bags. I don't carry a purse, always just a bag of some sort, so maybe that's why. My bag functions as a diaper bag and purse all in one. Remember this little sling tote? And this reversible messenger bag? Yes, I like to sew bags.

I affectionately refer to my current bag as "the dungeon" because it is so large and full of so many random items. (Goggles anyone? How about an old french fry?) I wanted to try to make a new bag that was less dungeon like-maybe more compartments or maybe a slightly smaller bag.

Well, I succeeded in making a cute bag, but I am not sure that it is going to be any less dungeony. Oh well.


Want to make it yourself?

Here's What You Need:

1 yard of your main fabric

1 yard of coordinating fabric

1 yard of lining (optional)

Start out by cutting out your pieces. The front of my bag is 17" wide by 15" high with rounded corners on the bottom: (ya, I should iron before cutting). Cut this out of your main fabric, your coordinating fabric and your lining if you are using lining:

The back of the bag is the same width but is MEASUREMENT tall. Again, cut it out of both fabrics and your lining.

Cut 2 pieces that are 4 inches by 45 inches as well out of all of your fabrics. One of these pieces will be your strap and one will be the sides of the bag.

You should have 4 pieces total for each fabric.

If you want any inner pockets now is a good time to do that. I did a large pocket on the back inner part of my bag:

I made some compartments in my pocket for things like my cell phone and a pen simply by sewing straight lines down the pocket:

OK, next lets do the strap. Put 1 of the 45 inch strips from each of your two main fabrics together with right sides facing and the lining on the outside. Sew down each side:

Turn it, press it and then top stitch it:

Now let's put the bag together. Starting with your inner fabric and your lining (if you are using it) put the other 45 inch strip along the edges of your front piece with the lining on the outside. Pin it in place all the way around the bag trimming any excess length off as needed.

Sew around the part your just pinned. Do the same thing with the back piece, matching it to the remaining side of your long 45 inch strip.

It should look like this when you are done:

Here's a close up of the corners:

 Do this to both the outer and the inner fabric.

Now, here's the trickiest part. Turn the OUTER fabric right side out:

and the INNER fabric inside out. Slide the OUTER fabric down inside the inner fabric matching up all the seams from the two pieces.

Tuck your straps down inside the bag so that the ends stick out like this:

Starting at the top of the flap and leaving an opening, sew around the bag-down the flap, across the middle, back up the other side of the top.
Leave several inches open at the top of the flap:

 I go over the strap part several times to make sure they are very secure.

Now, using your opening on the top, turn everything right side out and push the inner part down inside the outer part.

Press it nice and flat and smooth (that's always my favorite part because it starts to really look like a bag.)

Top stitch all the way around the flap. This will close your opening and keep your flap laying nice and smooth:

 And you're done! This can also make a great diaper bag. I even tossed in my diaper and wipes carrier:

Pretty nice huh?

Don't forget to also check out these other bags:

Thanks so much for visiting today Amber! What a great tutorial!
If you'd like to read more about Amber, here is the feature post I did about her & her cute blog!


  1. I am a newbie when it comes to sewing with a machine...like to actually make some these cute bags Amber is talking about! Up until now, I have just dabbled with hand embroidery. BUT- i must put my hand-me-down sewing machine to good use!

    thanks for the inspiration and informative tute!


  2. Love this I made one small modification, I made the flap go all the way from the bottom of the back up & over so it doubles as a changing pad. Lined it with pul!


Thanks for taking the time to leave a comment- I love reading them! :)
~Heather Lynne

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