Alright ladies and gents. Are you ready for a fun messenger bag sew along? I’m so excited to share this pattern with you through Windham Fabrics. I had a ton of fun creating this messenger bag for my friend Lily’s Ninja Don’t Sweat line.
Start by downloading the pattern from Windham’s site here.
Then run, don’t walk, to your local fabric store and pick up the supplies. I know there are several great online shops that still have Ninja’s Don’t Sweat including Spool who created their very own kit for our project. You can find it here.
I think the most tedious part of a new project is the ironing and cutting and ironing again. Especially when it involves fusible interfacing. As much as I hate getting that steam facial over the iron for hours, I’ve tried many shortcuts and it’s still worth it to take the time and just iron all the stabilizer on so you can enjoy your project you worked so hard on for years to come. If you’re lucky like me, sometimes I can coerce my awesome hubby to help me iron when I’m rushing to meet a deadline. I do make one short cut. Instead of cutting out all of my interfacing to fit the fabric panels for a project, I will lay my interfacing, glue side up on my ironing board and then lay out my fabric panels on top of it. I place an ironing cloth or piece of muslin over my fabric and interfacing and then iron my pieces together. I’ve found that cutting out my pieces after that saves me a little time. Plus it’s fun to put the puzzle pieces together on the interfacing.
So, cut out all your fabric pieces, iron on your stabilizer. Use my method or your own for the stabilizer. I don’t judge.
Then we’ll move on to the fun part. Sewing!
Review Step 3 in the pattern to create side panels and pockets:
Instead of creating a separate binding in my pockets, I like to leave a little bit of the lining of the pocket showing. I think it adds a nice clean line to the pocket instead of adding additional bulk with a binding at top.
Step 4, Create the front panel and pockets:
Here is a picture of my sew in stabilizer on my front panel. Note that I center the stabilizer on the wrong side of the front panel and baste stitch the two together.
If you would prefer to have two or more pockets in your front panel, measure the center line (or custom mark the lines you want) and mark with chalk or erasable ink. Sew a top stitch on the marked lines through the pocket and front panel.
Step 5, sew exterior bag panels together:
I like to fold my corners in like the picture below to reduce as much bulk in the corners.
Step 6, prepare flap of bag:
Step 7, insert magnetic clasp:
There are many different types of clasps. I chose to use one you can find in most big box fabric stores.
Step 9, prepare straps:
Step 10: You’re almost there! Slip your lining over the exterior bag, right sides together.
Note: For a cleaner look, I like to top stitch the top of the bag. I usually lengthen my stitch to 3.5. An old rule of thumb, the thicker the fabric (or fabrics at this point), the longer the stitch.
Step 11: It’s so close! The dummy panel:
And voila! A nifty messenger bag all your friends will be jealous of. My son has already claimed this bag as his own, so I guess I’ll have to make another one for myself.
Please feel free to post in the comments section or drop me an email if you have any questions. I’d love to see all of your beautiful finished bags on my flickr projects page here and post them all on Instagram with hashtag #ninjamessengerbag
Thanks for sewing with me!