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When I shared the Coach inspired baby bag that I made for my sister Kedron (and her newest addition), I mentioned that she wanted something classic and purse like, but baby friendly and with tons of pockets. After scouring the web (ok, my pinterest boards) for inspiration, I found it in this fabulous Bleecker Legacy Leather tote.
One trip to Michael Levine later, I was ready to make a dream baby bag for my sis- one with classic styling and also enough storage compartments for the most stuff-heavy of newborns.
Want to make a diaper bag too?
First cut out all of the fabric rectangles. These include-
Two 20″ x 14″ leather/exterior
One 20″ x 6″ leather/exterior (bottom)
Two 14″ x 6″ leather/exterior (sides)
Two 6″ x 7″ leather/exterior (exterior side pockets)
Two 3″ x 20″ leather/exterior (to trim interior)
Two 3″ x 6″ leather/exterior (to trim interior)
One 10″ x 20″ leather/exterior (exterior back pocket)
One 20″ x 3″ leather/exterior (exterior pocket liner trim)
Two 4″ x 12″ leather/exterior (front handles)
Two 18″ x 14″ lining (main pieces)
Two 11″ x 6″ lining (sides)
One 6″ x 20″ lining (bottom)
Two 6″ x 17″ pockets (will be folded in half so that both sides are finished)
One 8″ x 20″ exterior pocket liner
One 20″ x 16″ interior pocket (folded in half)
One piece of 38″ twill canvas for long handle
Sew pleather/leather/exterior trim to the top of all of the interior lining pieces (sew with right sides facing together). Then turn down and top stitch in place.
Fold the interior pocket pieces in half, wrong sides facing in. Pin in place on top of gusset/side pieces and sew down both vertical sides (the top will be open so it can function as a pocket and the bottom will be sewn together when the liner is sewn together).
Fold the main interior pocket in half, wrong sides facing each other. Pin in place on top of main liner piece and sew around three edges, leaving the top open (to function as a pocket). Add two lines of stitching in the middle of the pocket, dividing the pocket into thirds.
Pin each gusset piece to a main liner piece, right sides facing each other. Sew together along the vertical edge. Piece these two pieces together so that the order is gusset-main-gusset-main, forming a bottom less box. Be sure to leave stop all lines of stitching about an inch from the bottom edge in order to leave room for attaching the bottom piece.
Pin the bottom piece to all four sides of the ‘bottomless box,’ right sides facing each other. At each corner, pucker the corner so that the bottom can be sewn on in one continuous line of stitching (pin into place in the inch of space left at the bottom of each connection). Sew in place, leaving one large 6″ gap on one of the long edges (for turning the bag right side in later). The liner is now assembled.
Fold the handle pieces in half, right sides facing in. Pin in place and sew. Turn right side in. Pin handles in place, right sides facing in, equidistant from the center on the main exterior pieces. Baste together (when the exterior and lining are sewn together, the handles will also be sewn in place).
Repeat entire process with the exterior– sew pleather/leather/exterior trim to the top of the liner piece. Pin the exterior pocket piece and the liner piece together, right sides facing in. The exterior trim piece is the top edge- sew this edge and the pocket piece together. Flip right side in and top stitch to hold in place. Pin the pocket piece on top of the main body piece. Sew around three edges, leaving the top of the pocket open. Pin the gusset pocket pieces to their matching liner pieces, right sides facing in. Sew along the top edge. Flip right side in and top stitch the top edge down. Pin both side pocket pieces in place on top of both gusset pieces. Sew along vertical edges, leaving the top and bottom each open (the top will stay open and function as a pocket, the bottom will be closed when the exterior is sewn together).
Pin each gusset to a main exterior piece, right sides facing each other. Sew along the vertical edge. Piece these two pieces together so that the order is gusset-main-gusset-main, forming a bottom less box. Be sure to leave stop all lines of stitching about an inch from the bottom edge in order to leave room for attaching the bottom piece.
Pin the bottom piece to all four sides of the ‘bottomless box,’ right sides facing each other. At each corner, pucker the corner so that the bottom can be sewn on in one continuous line of stitching (pin into place in the inch of space left at the bottom of each connection). Sew in place.
Add loops/tabs with metal rings on each edge (to clip onto handle). The exterior is now assembled.
Tuck the assembled liner into the assembled exterior, right sides facing each other. Make sure the handle and the loops are tucked in between the exterior and liner. Pin in place and sew around entire top edge.
Turn the bag right side in, pulling through the gap in the bottom. Sew the gap closed and you’re finished!
Tons of pockets….
and classic styling- baby bag perfection!
It’s so pretty and I love the lining fabric. Kedron must love it. What kind of sewing machine do you have to be able to do such a nice job with thicker material?
Thanks Jill! I think the bag is being well loved. 🙂
My machine is a Brother… I sew a lot of bags (well, you know that already), and it does really well with a leather needle. 🙂
That is such a lovely bag!! I love the classic styling! I’ve linked to your tutorial over at Craft Gossip:
Christine Welsh says
Great Job! I’ve entered your bag in our weekly Bag Brag Tuesday Linking Party! I hope you will pop by for a visit too! 🙂 http://blog.chriswdesigns.com/2013/09/bag-brag-tuesday-linking-party-week-seventeen.html
Love the bag and I’m creating one of my own with some adjustments to make it into a slr camera bag. On the measurements for the lining the 27″ pocket is missing a demension, could you please let me know what it maybe.
Hey DeAnn- good catch! The post is updated… 🙂
Hello, I was looking at your lovely bag and wondered how much leather you purchased/used for this project please? Thank you!
Hey Nise- I think I bought 3 yards and had a decent amount left over! Hope that helps.
Angie Parkins says
What seam allowance do you use? and I really don’t understand why the two main lining pieces are 18″ by 14″ because they don’t fit with the two 20 x 3 interior trim pieces to match the exterior pieces when they are put together. Sorry, am I being really stupid? I am really confused, after spending ages cutting all the pieces I can’t get over this first hurdle. Angie
Hey Angie, I usually use a 1/4″ seam allowance.
However, the difference you see happens because the lining/interior has a few inches of leather/exterior along the top edge (making the top of the bag look more finished/professional). You’ll notice when you look at the tutorial pictures that all of the interior pieces have a section of leather/exterior along the top edge.
Hope that helps!
Hello, I am also struggling understanding the measurements for the main interior lining pieces listed at 18″ x 14″. They do not correspond correctly to the 20″ x 14″ pieces even with the reasoning you gave for the difference. I could possibly be miss understanding but should it not be the other way around, making the interior lining measurement 20″ x 12″ to accomplish what you have indicated?
Also I’m assuming on the interior pockets before folding them over and sewing the sides vertically you hemmed all the edges to create a finished look?
I love this bag and I don’t want to screw it up, so I want to make sure I understand before I begin sewing it together.
Hey Amy! You don’t have to hem anything- all of the raw edges get covered when you place the lining and the exterior together (those raw edges are all in between the two- so nice!). Hope that helps!
The lining pieces are blocked and have two components- the top portion is made of exterior fabric and the bottom portion is lining fabric (you can see in the pictures that the lining pieces are always lining fabric topped by a band of exterior fabric). Hope that helps!
Love this bag! Where did you find the leather ?
I found it in a shop in the LA fabric district- sorry that’s not helpful at all for tracking more down!