Jennifer’s Messenger Bag

My girlfriend, Jennifer, wanted me to make her a messenger bag.  She is a knitter and spinner extraordinaire and wanted something to take to a spinning conference and classes.

I had made her this cute Sew Together Bag, a Peekaboo Pencil Case by Pickle Pie Designs, and a name tag last year and she wanted something to match.

It has the cutest pattern of sheep knitting in red, black and white.  Can you spot something weird with that white sheep in the upper left corner?


I could not really find a pattern I liked, so I combined a bunch of patterns and ideas and created this prototype. I just used some fabric I had on hand.  I did quilt the fabrics.

I used duck cloth or canvas for the sides and bottom to give it a bit more structure.  When I showed it to Jennifer,  she offered a few suggested updates including a pocket for her tablet, some strips inside the sides so she could tuck in some knitting needles and more pockets.  All the more friendly for a knitter to use.

I decided that the front flap was going to be quilt as you go with snippets of the fabrics including the cute little knitting sheep in red, white and black.

Here are the step by steps of my quilt as you go Messenger flap so you can see how I do it.



Here is the back of the bag.  That is a really large pocket that has Headliner fabric in it to cushion her ipad.  It closes with a velcro strip.

I lined the inside and added this little pocket with a cute little sheep on it.

Jennifer also wanted a little zip bag to tuck some money, chapstick and a few necessities in.  I sized down another pouch I had found to make this wristlet.

Here is a little better view of the inside of the bag.

I added a wide adjustable strap.  She really liked it and has used it several times.  I love the zip that the striped binding gives to the front flap.  The solid sides add a calming factor to the busy sheep print, but it is still just too cute.  I think the QAYG flap really makes it look special.


DAMQG SEW-IN Day – Making a Plus Sign Zipper Bag

Plus zip bag Lori Miller Designs


Back in January, one of our DAMQG members, Lynn, held a class to make a Plus Sign Zipper Bag.  It was her own design.  Our guild came together for a Saturday sew-in and we all made these bags.

plus bag

I decided to make mine in scrappy colors of red, yellow and orange.  I did some homework ahead of time so that hopefully I could finish my bag on the sew-in day.

I pulled out all of my weird and random tan fabrics for the background.  They just became a neutral and worked well with the warm reds and oranges.

Here you can see that unusually large stash of tan and brown scraps for the background squares.  Where did they all come from?

We made two panels for the front and back.

cookie cat plus bag

Cookie cat came to inspect my work.  Like he usually does.  I think it passed.

Plus zip bag Lori Miller Designs

And here is the finished project and I was able to get it done on the DAMQG Sew-in Saturday.  I deviated from Lynn’s pattern a little and made faux leather handles for it.  I really like it and it is a BIG bag and holds a lot!

1-Lynn Plus Sign Tote

Here is a picture of Lynn’s original tote that she made.  Nice and scrappy.  Don’t you love her little kitty zipper pull?

gift bags

Lynn even provided these super cute bags as prizes for the day.  Aren’t they adorable?  I think I need to make some of those first aid bags as gifts.

1-DAMQG Plus Sign Bags

And finally, here is a picture from the Detroit Area Modern Guild meeting showing off our lovely Plus sign bags.