Monday, March 07, 2011

30-minute Little Boy's Messenger Bag Tutorial

Today will be my Li'l Guy's first day in pre-school. He really has to go if I want him to have a slot in the same school where my Princess goes, so he could start in kindergarten on September.

So, yesterday afternoon I made him this Messenger Bag using a Michael Miller animal print fabric with some velcro for closure and his initial made from felt.

Would you want to make one for you bundle of joy? Here's the tutorial:

You will need:

4 pcs. 9" by 8.5"  for fron and back panels
4 pcs. 3" by 6.5" 8.5" side panels
2 pcs. 9" by 3" base
2 pcs. 9" by 4" front pocket
2 pcs. 1.5" by 23" sling

Get your front pocket pieces, place them facing right sides together and sew a straight stitch along the longer side.

With your pocket pieces wrong sides together, topstitch.

Get one of your front/back pieces and sew on your pocket using a basting stitch.

Sew on your embellishment if you decide to put one. I used felt for my Li'l Guy's first name's initial.

Take one of your base piece and place it right sides together with your front piece (you could see my basting stitches). Sew a straight stitch then zigzag stitch to keep your edges from fraying.

After attaching your base piece, it would look like this.

Now, get one of your bigger pieces for your bag's back side. Make sure your print is not upside down ^^) Attach it to your base piece.

So, you'll have this.

Get one of your side panels and place it right sides together and aligned with your base piece. Sew it on with a straight stitch and zigzag stitch.

Now, attach your back and front panels to the long side of your side panel. Straight stitch then zigzag stitch.

Do the same to the other side.

So, we already have half of our messenger bag done.

Get one of your bigger pieces and sew on your velcro, about 1" from the top.

Do the same to the other piece.

Attach your base and side panels. But do not forget to leave 2" unsewn on one side of your panels while you are attaching your side panel to your back or front panel.

Get your sling piece. Place them right sides together and sew a straight stitch on both longer sides.

Turn your piece.

Topstitch. You could iron first then topstitch if you want but I was in a hurry to finish this so I could prepare our dinner ^^) You could also iron on some interfacing before sewing them on (procedure before this) but I did not have any interfacing on hand.I need to buy some the next time we go to the city. ^^)

Get your bag's outer piece (the one with the pocket) and sew on your sling with a basting stitch on each side.

Get both bag pieces, place your bag's inner piece inside the outer piece, right sides together. Make sure your sling piece is safely tucked inside.

Sew a straight stitch leaving 1/4" seam from the edge.

So you'll have this.

Turn your piece through the unsewn part of your bag.

Topstitch, leaving a 1/8" seam from the top of your bag.

Now, you have your messenger bag!

The velcro closures are easy enough for your ray of sunshine to open or close. And play with the dimensions of your bag. My Li'l Guy's bag is big enough for his daily log book, a small wipes, a bottle of water and some snacks.

Li'l Guy likes it!

Princess tried it too and asked me for one ^^)

I hope you liked today's tutorial. Next tutorial later this week will be a hand-painted apron for my Princess. ^^)

Have a nice monday everyone!

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23 lovely people left a warm message!:

LP aka A Crafty Southern Chick said...

Ohhh my goodness your kids are SO STINKIN' CUTE! And the bag is awesome, great idea and I adore the print!

A Scrap of Time said...

I love messenger bags... very cute!!

I found your blog through the follow along. I am now following you, and would love it if you would follow me back! =o)

I can't wait to read all your posts!

Beth @ Sand To Pearl said...

Perfect little boy messenger bag. I love the fabric choice too, it's so adorable.

Jessica said...

I love it - you did a great job! I've been looking for something like this for my son and can't wait to give it a try!!

Erica said...

This is adorable!! Great instructions!

Erica {B is for Boy} said...

Awesome! My older boy starts preschool next year so I am bookmarking this! Yours turned out so cute!

Rachel Harwood said...

That is so cute!!! What a great tutorial.

I'd love for you to join in on my For the Kids Fridays Link Party!!! Stop by!

:)rachel from

Misty said...

Love that CUTE bag!! Thanks for linking @Creative Itch's "Sew Cute Tuesday"! I'll be featuring this on the 15th, so be sure to grab a 'featured' button!

Misty said...

Love that CUTE bag!! Thanks for linking @Creative Itch's "Sew Cute Tuesday"! I'll be featuring this on the 15th, so be sure to grab a 'featured' button!

Ginger said...

Perfect for books on the go! Thanks for linking up to Mad Skills Monday!

AllieMakes! said...

Great tutorial! Very cute!
Thanks for linking up to Making It With Allie! I can't wait to see what you have for next week!

Rachel at Sun Scholars said...

Thanks for sharing at the For the Kids Friday Link Party at Sun Scholars! I look forward to having you back this Friday!

Ds said...

I have this fabric and LOVE it! It is a cute bag, but is it sturdy enough to carry stuff back and forth to school? My fabric is just quilting cotton and I noticed you didn't line it or anything. I was just wondering.

To Sew With Love said...

Hi, DS. I am so sorry it took me a long time to reply. I had such a very busy week as school just started here my side of the world ^^)

I made this bag for my son when he started in the Day Care. Since, he only needed to bring with him a pack of wipes, a small bottle of water, snack and nothing else, the bag -though unstabilized- was ok. We even use it when we do our short paseos and I fill it with more things. Even if you won't stabilize your fabric but if you have strengthened your straight stitches with zigzag stitches to keep the fabric edges from fraying and the straight stitches from opening up, and topstitching when necessary, I think you should be ok. Although if you'd like to have a sturdier bag, I suggest you stabilize your fabric pieces. If ever you have any other question, don't hesitate to ask. I wasn't able to reply to you by email since I couldn't find it...

Have a lovely day!


Ira said...

Thanks for sharing this tutorial..
i plan to make one for my lil boy too :)

Anonymous said...

I was just making this for a gift and went to sew on the side panels and they seem to short. In the pictures they look the same length as the bag but on the cut list it say to cut them 6.5, is that a mistake? Should they be 8.5?
Thanks for the Tutorial

ToSewWith Love said...

Dear Anonymous. Thanks a lot for your comment and thanks for using our tutorial. I am so sorry with my typo yes, it should be 8.5 I am really sorry for the mistake.... Would love to know how the gift turned out ^^)


Anonymous said...

I figured it was just a typo. Thanks for the response. The bag turn out really cute!! I used a solid color fabric for the strap and pocket. I tried it on my 2 year old it fit great. It will be the perfect gift for a little girl's 2nd birthday!!

shannon_in_love said...

i was wondering what are the finished dimensions?

Lelanie Denso said...

@shannon_in_love Hi,Shannon. _I have entirely missed on including that in the post! The bag when finished measured: 11.5" x 8.25"


Jamie Gupton said...

Super cute tutorial! Prayers said for your sister and her sweet baby. ♥

Chris said...

Thanks so much for this tutorial! My GK's now homeschooled but when they go to the library or meet with the other hs kids, they'll need something to carry their books or whatever with them. This is perfect kid-sized bag.

Jennifer said...

I may be addicted to this pattern. I have made seven of them so far for gifts for the little guys in my life, have an eighth cut out and a ninth that is slightly bigger all over because it's for an older child. Thank you so much for sharing this tutorial.


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