This is part 2 in a series designed to walk you through designing and sewing a messenger bag. If you have missed steps, you should go back to this page.
The photographs that will be shown in the instruction sections of this project will include patterned fabrics, but your messenger bag does not need to include them. There are two main options for how you can make this project:
- Typical – This project will have a definite exterior fabric and a lining.
- Reversible – This project will have two similar fabrics so that you can choose which side you want to show the world on a regular basis.
In order to help you make a successful bag, I felt it was important to first discuss which fabrics would be best suited for the project. In order to do this, I’ll break it down into the two options so that you can get the fabric you need without any problems.
The Typical Messenger Bag
Like I said, the typical messenger bag requires two different weights of fabrics – an exterior and a lining.
The exterior fabric should be a tough bottom weight fabric. Examples include twill, denim, and canvas. You can often find these fabrics in multiple colours, even neon colours, or patterns. This will be the side of the bag that the world sees, so choose carefully.
The lining may be selected from many options. The most common is a lightweight polyester satin which frays easily. If you choose this fabric, you should serge or zigzag the edges of your pieces before sewing them together. I prefer to purchase a printed cotton that is both soft and durable. This is similar to the fabric in the instructional pictures.
The Reversible Messenger Bag
The reversible messenger bag is made with two coordinating fabrics of equal weight. The weight of a fabric is how thick it is. Making a bag with two different weights will not work well if you’d like to turn it inside out. Though you can choose any type of fabric, the best options for this are printed cottons that are often found in the quilting section. I found the fabrics I used in the instructional pictures on the discount table at my local fabric store during the season change.