The first version of the denim bag turned out way too big. That is a seriously large messenger bag! I gave it to my daughter, M, to use as a travel bag, and away it went before I remembered to take any pictures of it. I started right in on a redraft. First, I measured my current leather bag and drew a pattern. I used the corner draft from some pattern I had in the drawer, and I changed the flap to a curve instead of a rectangle. I used some heavier denim that I got at the thrift store and some new cotton sheeting for the lining.
The side edges of the pattern piece slope inward slightly so that the bag will maintain its shape instead of being wider at the top (which is common when you sew the corners into a straight sided piece). I put a pocket on the front of the flap to hold my credit card when I am at the gas station. It’s hard to hold the card, gas cap, and gas nozzle all at the same time, so a convenient outside pocket to hold the card temporarily will be great. I don’t put the gas cap down anywhere because there have been two times when I drove off without it and had to buy a new one.
You can barely see it on the right in the above photo, but there is a pocket across the front under the flap. The strap was made to measure and is perfect for me mainly because I couldn’t find the hardware to make it adjustable. I have since ordered some and look forward to learning how to make an adjustable strap. The finished length measurement of the strap (not including the seam allowances) is 46″ and the bag is meant to be worn with the strap ‘cross body’. Here’s the inside:
That denim was pretty thick, and I had a hard time attaching the lining to the top, and luckily, any wonky stitching is inside and not visible most of the time. There is no interfacing in this bag, only some batting sewn to the lining pieces. No needles were broken in the sewing of this bag! All in all, this first attempt turned out great, and now I am going to use some of my bright decorator fabrics to make some more.