22 October 11

Every New Bag Starts the Same Way

I got an idea for a new bag

Every time I get an idea for a new bag, it starts this way. I get an idea, I make a quick sketch at the top of a piece of paper. I mull it over and think about how it will have to be created and I ponder the pieces required and the order I’ll assemble them.

Once I feel like I have a pretty good mental picture of how the construction will happen, I decide how large I want the overall bag to be. Then I sit down for a few hours and determine how many pieces I’ll need and how large they’ll need to be. I need piece dimensions for the exterior fabric items, the lining fabric items, and interfacing. I need to figure out any hardware I need (snaps, loops for attaching the strap, zippers, etc.) and I spell that out.

Then I cut out all the items I need for 1 bag and I assemble it to get an idea of how much time and how much frustration it will actually take. If I have a bag that takes a lot of time but has very little frustration I’ll make it. If I have a bag with a lot of frustration but only takes a short amount of time I’ll make it.

For this smallish but utilitarian bag, I was amazed at how many pieces go into making it. Which means that the construction for this bag that is about 10” x 5” x 2” takes just as long to make as a large messenger bag. There was one fiddly bit that caused a lot of frustration. A LOT of frustration. But after reconsidering the construction elements, I realized I could get the back with less hassle by changing my method which means that this bag is bad on the “maybe” list. I’ll make another before DIY and see it can be a potential seller and then I’ll set about making more.

I’m tired of making totes. I still like making messenger bags, but I want something smaller. I think this may be a winner. I’ll find out soon.


  1. Interesting to know of the design and discovery process :)

    Rachel on Oct 22, 02:41 pm

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