My daughter has a friend whose birthday is coming up soon and we needed a gift. Her friend loves reading books, so we thought a little bag that she could carry a couple of books or her Kindle would be a perfect gift!
I found this post from Crazy Little Projects and decided that with a bit of changing of the pattern and adding a few extra things, we could make the perfect little bag! So our very own pattern and the Mini Messenger Bag tutorial was born!
- 1/2 yard each of two coordinating fabrics
- 1/2 yard fusible fleece interfacing
- magnetic button
- sewing machine
- iron/ironing board
- Mini Messenger Bag Pattern Pieces (When you print, make sure that the box “Actual Size” is clicked so the pieces will print our correctly.)
*I used a 3/8 inch seam allowance throughout this tutorial.
First, print out the 3 pattern pieces. Cut out each one and tape together the flap and the back pieces along the dashed line. Now it is time to cut out your fabric pieces!
On the fold, cut out 1 front pattern piece from each of the fabrics. Then, on the fold, cut 1 back/flap pattern piece from each of the fabrics. At this point, you should have 4 pieces.
Now, on the fold, cut out a 1 front pattern piece from the interfacing and also the back/flap pattern piece from the interfacing, also on the fold. (We are only adding interfacing to the outer fabric.)
Then cut the fabric for your strap. I cut the strap 3 inches wide by the whole length of the fabric (which is about 45 inches), but you can cut it shorter if you want. Cut one of those from both of the fabrics.
So, now you should have 4 pieces of fabric, 2 pieces of interfacing, and 2 pieces for the strap.
Let’s start with the strap first! Put the strap pieces right sides together…
*(A Note about the Strap): After making this bag, I realized that it might have been nice to use a lightweight/midweight interfacing on the strap, so if you want to do that then please do. I know that we will be doing that in the future.)
…and sew down each side.
Then flip the strap right side out. I like to use a big safety pin for this part.
Then iron it and make it look nice.
Then top stitch down both sides.
Now the strap is all finished and we can move on to the most exciting part, the bag!
First, we are going to attach the interfacing. Place the interfacing shiny side up onto your ironing board.
Then place your outer fabric pieces onto the interfacing with the right sides facing up.
Then iron. I like to put a thin cloth over top while I iron so that none of the sticky fusible stuff comes off on my iron!
*Please follow the directions that came with your interfacing. Mine might be a little bit different.
Now, place your outer back/flap piece down with the right side facing up and place the outer front piece down with the right side facing down.
Now sew along the edges of where the two meet, leaving 1/2 inch at each end. (Confusing right, let me show you with a picture!)
(But, of course, sew a little straighter than I can draw 🙂 )
Now do the same thing with the inner fabric. Lay the fabric right sides together.
And then sew around the bottom section, leaving 1/2 inch unsewn at each end.
Now it is time to work on the button. I bought my magnet buttons at Joann a few years ago. They came in a pack of three and I had some leftover from another project. I’m guessing they are still the same now? Anyway, the ones I have have two little prongs on the back. This is what they look like.
So, we need to measure where we want our buttons to go, cut two little slits in our fabric, insert the buttons, and then bend the prongs back to secure it to the fabric.
So, let’s do all of that together! First, flip your outer fabric right side out and figure out where the middle of the bag is. Then measure about 2 1/2 inches down and make the little slits in your fabric. Make sure the slits line up with the prongs of your magnetic button. (I know this is a scary part, but it’s going to be great!)
Then insert the button into the slits and bend the prongs to secure it to the fabric.
Now we’ll put the button on the inside. Measure about 1 1/2 inch down from the top and center of the inside fabric. Make your two little slits again.
And insert the button and bend back the prongs.
All finished with the buttons!
Now we’ll put the whole thing together. Flip your outer fabric back so it is inside out again. Set it down with the front pattern piece facing up and lay the inside fabric on top of it with it’s front pattern piece facing down. The front pattern pieces should be all lined up. (I hope that makes sense!)
Now sew along the top/flap section. Take care not to sew any of the front pattern piece when you are doing this part. Let me show you what I mean with a fancy little drawing.
And then it will look like this on the other side.
Now turn the flap part right side out and the outer bag part right side out and then you should be able to tuck the lining fabric into the outer fabric.
Then iron it all to make it look nice.
Now we’re going to top stitch around the flap part and sew a line down the middle, where the flap will fold down.
(Can you see the line down the middle?)
Now, insert your straps in between the inside and outside fabric. Then fold down the edges of the inside and outside fabric and pin.
Then sew along where you pinned so that your straps are attached and the inside and outside fabric are sewn together.
And now it’s all finished! Doesn’t it look great?!
And a big thank you to my little model! She is sure excited to give this Mini Messenger Bag to her friend!
Let me know if you have any questions. This is the first time I’ve done something like this and I would love to help you out!