Friday, March 18, 2011

messenger bag tutorial (part 4)

Okay... getting back in the swing of things...

Part 1: fabric requirements and cutting
Part 2: outer bag assembly
Part 3: lining and side seams

And now, to make the flap and put all the bits together.

First of all, take the 3.75"x12" front strap piece, and trim it down to 10" long. Fold it in half lengthwise, and stitch down the long side and one short side. Trim the corners at the stitched end, turn strap right side out, and topstitch two rows of stitching along the three sides.
Place the raw edge of the strap, centered, on one right side of the 12"x12" flap, and place the 6"x12" flap lining over it, right side down. Stitch along the 12" side.
Press seam allowances toward the lining, and stitch a double row of topstitching along the seam.
Fold flap in half, crosswise, and stitch the two edge seams.
Trim the corners, turn right side out, press, and stitch a double row of topstitching along the three finished sides, making sure not to catch the strap in the stitching.

Baste the flap onto the outer bag, right sides together, with the outer side of the flap on the zipper-pocket side of the bag, making sure that the flap is centered on the middle section of the bag.

Now, we're going to pleat the sides, and attach the shoulder strap hardware.
Cut two more 2.5" sections of the strap that you used for the rectangle ring in part one. Thread each of these through two more rings, and set them aside.

Make a mark 1.25" on each side of the side seams.
Fold the bag at these marks, and bring them toward the seam, creating a box pleat.
Pin in place, and baste a ring strap in place over the pleat.
Do the same on the other side, and set the bag aside for now.

Find the 4"x10" strip of coordinating lining fabric. Fold it in half lengthwise, and press. Then open it up, and fold each side inward to meet the center fold line. Press in place, then fold the strip along the original center fold.
Stitch along each long side, and thread this strip through the 1" swivel hook. Baste the raw edges to the outside of the flap, close to one of the edges. (Sorry... forgot to take a picture of this... but the last photo will show where it ends up.)

Mark the center front and back of the bag and lining.

Turn the outer bag inside out, and place the lining inside it, right sides together (the lining will be right side out), making sure that the pocket side of the lining is on the flap/zipper-pocket side of the outer bag.
Pin the bag and lining together, matching the centers first, and working toward the sides. Pin the excess lining into pleats at the sides, to match the pleats in the outer bag.

Stitch around, leaving an opening on the flap side of the bag, for turning.
Carefully turn the bag and lining right side out, and slip-stitch the opening closed.
Press the seam flat, and stitch (I bet you can guess) two rows of topstitching all the way around, keeping the swivel-ring strap pinned out of the way on the flap.

Now all we have left to do is the shoulder strap and the snap!

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