The Sew Sew Chat Designed the Ideal Bag!
Below are loads of details and links to the videos designing the bag as well as the full length videos for Sewing and Cutting. Please feel free to download the printable pattern! It is Free and contains all the pattern pieces and details below. Sewing Instructions are Video only and they're detailed with options and ideas.
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Sewing Level:Intermediate or Adventurous Advanced Beginner
Fabric: Choose fabrics that are somewhat sturdy with good body for the Outer Fabric such as canvas, twills, denim, and waxed canvas. For the lining, you can use a variety of weights but try to select something quilting cotton weight. Remember you'll be shoving stuff in your bag and it needs to withstand edges and corners of objects. You can reinforce many fabrics to get the weight you need. See below for fabric amounts and tips for adding stiffener, padding and/or interfacing.
Regular Sized: 14" wide x 9.25" tall x 3.75" deep (front to back) Cream bag in photos
Full Sized: 16.5" wide x 11" tall x 4" deep (front to back) Wine colored bag in photos
Description: The viewers did an amazing job drafting their 'Ideal Bag'. It is full-featured and designed so you can pick and choose what you want in your bag. You can design yours to suit your needs but here's an overview of what the Viewers requested and their reasoning:
- Five Pockets on the Front:
- Two Gusseted with elasticized tops (one with a flap) each to hold a phone or eyeglass case and keep them secure.
- Two zippered and one hand pockets to hold items to be easily accessed.
- Two Pockets on the Back:
- One that can hold papers and a smaller next to it (this pocket can be divided however you need).
- There's also a handle to make... well... handling the bag even easier.
- A full-sized Lap Top sleeve, two zippered pockets to hold 'precious' items like an Epi Pen or other items you always want to have on you but maybe don't want them in the way of all the frequently accessed parts of your bag.
- The Precious Pocket sits on top of the Cord Pocket - a place for all those things that are now a necessary and annoying essential to keeping us connected.
- Lastly a simple sleeve to hold your water bottle!
- Messenger style strap
- Two Flap Options:
- Elastic Flap with a top that hugs the sides to keep the contents secure.
- Pocket Flap with a zippered hand pocket
While this bag may look a little intimidating to sew, it was drafted to make sewing it the simplest and straight-forward. You will have a bag you are definitely proud you made! If you want to build your sewing and bag making skills, this is a great project. The video walks you through each section in chapters. It will be easy to sew this and walk away from it if you need a break! Just organize it from the beginning and follow along. You got this!
Fabric Amounts are given for the Full Sized Ideal Bag however you can get away with a bit less for the Regular Sized Bag. Leave the Notions the same.
Both bags pictured were sewn with a 'padding' layer for the Laptop. Neither used Interfacing for Stiffener. Yardages are provided for all three.
Outer Fabric (select the width of your material)
- 44" wide : 1.5 yards (54" wide: 1.3 yards)
- 44" wide: 1.5 yards (54" wide: 1.25 yards)
Padding(Optional) Quilt batting or similar
- Since batting comes in all sizes, you need enough for the Back Bag and Laptop Sleeve pattern pieces. Roughly 20" by 25".
If your Outer Fabric needs a bit more stability, interfacing can add the layer you need (yardage amount will allow for the Flap, Front, Back and Sides to be interfaced.
You can also add stiffener for a heftier bag. But if you're using a canvas, denim or twill (a fabric you'd use for a bottom weight garment or bag), stiffener is unnecessary. Stiffener yardage allows for the Front, Back, and Sides (and no Flap).
*Make sure to choose the Notions for the Flap you are making*
The notions do not change much in size for either sized Ideal Bag; you can use the below for either sized bag.
- 1.375" wide: one yard (36")
- 3/8"-1/2" wide (whatever you have on hand):
- 7" (Gusset Pockets)
- 9" (Elastic Flap)
You can use precut or zipper by the yard. I use the latter for my samples (which is a bit on the wide side compared to store-bought zippers but either work great.
- 1 @ 9" (Straight Pocket)
- 1 @ 10" (Angle Pocket)
- 1 @ 16" (Precious Pocket)
- 1 @ 6.5" (Pocket Flap)
- 1" wide webbing: 9" (Handle)
- 1" - 2" wide webbing (whatever you have on hand): 9" (Side Bands)
- 1.5" - 2" wide webbing (whatever you have on hand): 59" (Strap and Ends)
Use the width of the webbing you are using for your Strap
- 3- Bar Slider Qty. 1 (Strap)
- Loops Qty. 2 (Strap Ends)
Print Actual Size for the Full Size Ideal Bag (this size will fit a full sized lap top)
- Print 85% Size for the Regular Size Ideal Bag (except the Water Bottle Sleeve, page 11- print once at 85% size and once at full size for the Flap on the page)
- The PDF download is 26 pages of 8.5" x 11" Landscape format.
- PDF download includes pattern pieces (some need to be taped and some need to be placed on the fold when cutting), an overview, and a pattern card (the equivalent of a pattern envelope with all technical details like yardage, cutting, notions and measurements).
The green Ideal Bag in the photos is a modified version I made in the last two videos. I used elements from the pattern to make my own ideal bag.
Click the images below for the videos:
How To Cut:
Design Process Videos:
2021 live streams: Hacked in to a slightly different version: