Put it in neutral

Many, many bag makers these days use very bold, vibrant prints which immediately catch the eye. They are incredibly visually appealing, but that certainly does not mean that they are practical or necessarily well thought out. Even if the interiors are pretty, they often have just one or two pockets. These two bags which I made recently are just the opposite of this. A custom order for a neutral, understated bag – without flowers – was a new challenge, as many of my fabrics are brightly coloured and/or incorporate floral elements. I’m also steering away from lightweight cotton exteriors at the moment, as I like more of a structured feel in the messenger bags. I know adding interfacing will help make cottons more suitable, but I also want to make sure most of my bags are washable and that they will retain their original look and feel. Anyway, a trip to the store was in order and I found a number of fabrics that I hoped would fit the bill. The client’s requirements were: beige/blue/black, no flowers, subtle, goes with everything. The end result was just that! The bag features a wide, adjustable strap, rear magazine pocket, divided pockets under the flap and inside the bag, a key clip, zippered pocket and parachute clip closure (aka side release buckle). I used three different drapery/upholstery fabrics, one of which was double sided, so in effect four fabrics, plus fleece interlining for structure and durability.

Neutral-toned messenger bag


Interior


Demonstration of capacity


As you can see, this bag is deceptive! It looks small, but it can hold so much! This is a large wallet, essentials pouch with countless bits and pieces, pencil roll, sketch pad, pens, notepad, cell phone, shopping bag and a magazine in the rear pocket – and there is room for more!

Magazine pocket


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