Making a Bag – Arts and Crafts

Making a Bag

Recently I got some fabric printed with my own designs, to make a bag and a dress or skirt. Having sewn nothing but t-shirt labels for the past year or so, I decided to start with the bag!

In the past I’ve made a couple of dresses, cushions, curtains, a tiny bag, and I’ve perfected anime girl cosplay skirts (which I end up wearing for normal everyday wear too…). So I’m no sewing expert but have made a fair few things.

If you want to get into making your own clothes, get a copy of Yeah I Made it Myself by Eithne Farry – a really fun and inspiring book that makes it seem possible to make things yourself.

Cute handbag

I have loads of ideas for cute fabric I’d like to get printed, but I started with my super-colourful montage of all my characters (which you can order as a print in the shop). I really love this montage and have been getting it printed on everything recently!

I wanted a handbag-size bag, big enough for everyday essentials (purse, phone, lipsyl and a reading book or a drink) so, as I love DIY, I made the pattern using a paper bag. To make sure it was the right size, I laid out what I wanted to carry in it and drew the pattern around it – a panel for the sides (cut two) and a strip for the edge/gusset (cut on a fold so it’s twice as long). The strap was just a long strip.

DIY bag sewing pattern

There are probably more stylish ways to make a handbag, using a proper pattern, but I’m happy with the result! And when you make your own your can have everything just as you want it, down to the colour of the zip and the length of the strap. I found some cute bumblebee stripe fabric for the lining:

Bumblebee stripe fabric lining

As a finishing touch I added my bumblebee cat charm to the zip! (If you want one, the charms and keychains are available to order online here).

Bumble bee cat charm as zip pull

Several people have said they’d like to use the fabric for their own sewing projects, so I’m looking into the best way to make it available for you to order – keep an eye on my Facebook or Twitter for updates!

Cute handbag

Perfect size handbag