Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Tutorial: Quick and Easy Over the Shoulder Bag

 My In-laws live in Africa.  A little over a year ago my mother in-law sent me some beautiful fabrics from Africa.  I have had them all stowed away, not wanting to cut into something so rare!
Well, I decided last week that I wanted to make a quick over the shoulder type purse/bag.  And it occurred to me that this might be the perfect opportunity to make something of those beautiful fabrics!  Now I can show off this fabric whenever I go out.   
The great thing about this type of bag is that it goes together really, really quickly!  Less than about an hour. 

  • 2, 17 1/2" x 38" pieces, one of material of the exterior fabric and one of the material of the interior fabric.
  • 2, 5" x Width of Fabric strips, one of material of the exterior fabric and one of the material of the interior fabric.
  • 4, 8" squares of the exterior fabric for the pockets.
  • 4" strip of ribbon

1.  Take the large piece of exterior fabric and fold in half width wise.

2.  Place the fabric on a cutting mat and with a ruler, start at the folded edge and measure up to the open edge and in 1 1/2" creating an angle from the fold to the open edge. 
 Repeat with opposite side. 
3.  Repeat steps 1 and 2 with the interior.
4.  Pin the sides together and sew the sides closed. 
5.  Keeping the bag inside out, go to the bottom of the bag and create a triangle at the corner by pulling out the corner and pushing down on the top and sides of the bag.
6.  Find the place inside the corner, where it measures 4" from edge to edge and draw a line.
7.  Stitch on the line.  Repeat with the other side.  Set exterior aside.
9.  Take two of the 8" squares and place them right sides together. Sew along all four edges, leaving a 1-2" opening to turn right side out. 
Trim the corners.  
 10.  Place pockets on the right side of the interior, equidistant from the fold line, the sides and the opening seams.  Sew pockets to interior along sides and bottom, leaving the tops open!
11.  Repeat steps 4 through 7 with the interior fabric. 
12. Take the two 5" x Width of Fabric pieces.  Place the interior and exterior pieces right side together.
13.  Sew along the long sides, leaving the shorter ends open. 
14.  Turn the strap right side out. 
15.  Press.
16.  Edge stitch along both long sides.
17.  Turn the exterior right side out. 
18.  Place the exterior fabric of the strap against the right side of the bag.  With the side seam of the exterior at the center of the strap.  Baste in place.
19.  Repeat with the other edge of the strap on the other side seam of the bag.  Be careful not to twist the strap.
20.  At the center of one of the sides of the top fold the ribbon in half and baste in place.
21.  Keep the interior inside out and place it around the exterior (which is right side out), making sure the strap is in between the interior and the exterior.  
22.  Pin around the opening 
23.  Stitch along the entire outside at a 5/8" seam allowance leaving a 2 - 3" opening for turnign right side out. 
24.  Pull interior out through the opening.  
25. Tuck interior into the exterior.
26.  Edge stitch around the entire opening.  For a nice final touch, stitch around the opening again 1/4" inside the edge stitch.
27.  On the opposite side of the ribbon, sew on a button to keep the opening of the bag closed. 
And Voila!  A quick, easy and pretty over the shoulder bag!
Can't wait to use mine! 


Anonymous said...

Beautiful bag! I must find similar material and make one for myself.

Thanks for the tutorial!

Anonymous said...

Fab bag & tutorial. I've made one for myself with African Fabric I had. Everyone loves it!

Mauby said...

@Anonymous 1- thank you! I hope you found some fabric and have a bag now!

@Anonymous 2- thanks! So glad to hear ou made one and that everyone loves it! I love getting compliments on stuff and then shocking people by saying oh, I made that. ;)

Anonymous said...

So glad I found this! I love the bag I made my best friend. I might have to make one for myself, too!

Anonymous said...

You made it look so easy. Lovely fabric indeed. I am making a similar one and had some doubts, thank you for clearing them up. Good teaching! You should post more.
Evelyn from Puerto Rico.

indira said...

love the bag.want to make one for myself. thanks for the tutorial

Dr.Jones Methews said...

This is surely a very good blog, thanks a lot for sharing such nice information here.

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