Two bags in one simply by snapping it together in a different way!
I was getting tired of hauling my knitting around in plastic bags and wanted to make a versatile bag that I could adjust to the project at hand.
Step 1: Materials
I made this bag or materials I had in my stash, but here is a list of what I used:
- 2 fabric squares for 18'
- 1 yard of strap
- ribbon to cover the seems
- 2 1.5" rings
- 3 snaps
- leather scraps
- fabric scraps for embellishments
- 1 button
- 6" piece of cord or rubber cord
Step 2: Cutting the Fabric
Cut 2 squares of 18" fabric of your choice. I used fairly thick materials to help maintain the shape of the finished bag.
Once cut, fold the squares into triangles and cut of one corner 3" from the mid-line (see picture).
Step 3: Finish Seems and Stitch Bottom
I wanted to add some visual interest with some burlap scarp that I had and stitched that onto one of the fabric pieces first. Then I cleaned up the seams by folding them over and covering them with seam ribbon (doubling over the seams would have been too bulky).
Fold the fabric pieces in half (just like they were when cut) and stitch the bottom together (where the triangle was cut off).
Fold the pieces so the bottom seem lines up in the middle (see picture) and stitch the corners together (about three inches from the point). The cutting mat in the picture gives a better idea of the dimensions.
Step 4: Stitch Together the Two Halves
Turn the pieces right side out and press out all the seams.
Pin together the two halves so the middle seam at the bottom lines up. This is a little awkward but once the pins are placed it is fairly straight forward.
Sew together the halves by sewing the bottom seam first. After that stitch the two pieces together all around. The first picture shows the inside of how the two halves are connected into a bag.
I chose to add a little more embellishment to the bottom of the bag to make it visually more appealing.
Step 5: Adding Snaps
Put pins to mark the middle of each of the four sides that are open - that is where the snaps are placed.
Using the appropriate tools punch in the snaps making sure that female/male snaps line up BOTH ways to connect the bag sides two different ways. They basically alternate.
Step 6: Adding the Strap
I used two small leather scraps and the two rings to make the hardware for the bag (see second picture). I sewed the leather with the rings on the top corners of each side of the bag so the leather was placed on the outside.
Feed the strap through the rings (making sure it is not twisted) and sew it together. I chose to cover the connection with some leather and added more fabric scraps to pretty it up.
Step 7: Adding a Closure
To keep the bag closed when it is not in satchel form I added a button and some rubber cord over the middle.
And voila, the bag is now ready to be snapped whichever way suits the needs of my current knitting project.
Step 8: Update - Accessory
I added a simple little leather "wallet" to keep needles and stitch markers contained.
Step 9: Update - Bottom Insert (to Hold Shape)
To help maintain the shape of the bag and add loops for organization, I cut out three pieces of cardboard (1 rectangle and 2 triangle and covered them with fabric. The triangles fold up to allow the bag to be changed from the "dumpling" shape to the traditional bag.
Step 10: Update - Add a Measuring Tape
Years ago I picked up this measuring tape ribbon in the one dollar section of Target, thinking that one day I might need it. Well, today was the day and I added the ribbon to the inside of the strap loop for a built in tape measure. While I lucked out and the colors go very nicely here, it is very discreet while the bag is carried around.