David’s Bag

I had a good sized piece of faux fur left over from my backpack project of last year.


And….I heard a very loud “I want one!” from this guy.



This is my great friend David, the ultimate lumbersexual (if that’s still a thing!). He lives in New York and he’s always willing to tromp the garment district with me for hours on end, and then turn around and build a deck or shingle a dilapidated backyard shed. Trust me, there aren’t many guys like that. I’m keeping him around!


In his day to day life he works for the company that provides services for the hearing impaired on Broadway. It’s a very stressful job, and he looks forward to Monday nights when most of the shows “are dark”. (Look, I’m learning some theatre lingo!) Every other day usually finds him frantically running from theatre to theatre, putting out fires just before the curtain goes up. Employees don’t show up, equipment fails, bus loads of senior citizens arrive and overwhelm the service, Snarky patrons are out of control and need to be placated. Things rarely go smoothly. A warning to tourists in Times Square….don’t get in his way, he’ll run you over! This man needs a bag that can multitask as much as he does.


Plan. A messenger bag to hold his laptop, which can also become a large tote bag to schlep the various headsets and hand held devices between theatres.


David loves buffalo plaid anything, so I set out looking for some wool fabric that would play nicely with the gray faux fur. My online search eventually lead to Etsy and a piece of ombré Harris Tweed. I like to think of it as buffalo plaid with a twist. https://www.etsy.com/shop/EsplanadeLondonCloth.



I think any bag maker will tell you that an arsenal of different interfacings makes for better bags. There are so many available, from stiff plastic-y ones, to ones that are thick and cushioned.



This is my new favorite! Medium weight Pro-Weft Supreme from Fashion Sewing Supply. It’s a soft brushed knit interfacing with some slight stretch in one direction. I used it to back all the Harris Tweed parts of David’s bag. It’s a dream to work with, and fuses at a lower setting than the interfacings I would use for a shirt. I save every little scrap of this stuff. It’s that good! Since making this bag I’ve used it to interface welt pockets, bound buttonholes and pocket flaps.




I don’t have very many progress pics of this bag. This is the recessed zipper opening for the top of the bag in process. It’s a nice feature to have, especially when the stuff you’re toting needs to be protected. I highly recommend this video https://youtu.be/R-CHW9EEd3k. Like so many things in sewing, what looks complicated really isn’t. What I love about this video is that everything ends up finished in the end. No ragged edges anywhere. Your bag will be as beautiful inside, as out.



I lined the bag with quilting cottons from JoAnn’s. There’s a padded divider to hold David’s laptop along the back of the bag. It has a zippererd pocket on the front side. Kyle, (my bag guru!) from Vacuuming the Lawn, shared a great tutorial on how do do this. So I’m passing it along. http://emmalinebags.blogspot.com/2012/01/how-to-sew-zipper-pocket-tutorial.html. Again, what looks complicated really isn’t.


There are three small pockets along the front of the bag. I used some rivets as reinforcement along the top edge, mostly because I just love setting them!



Here’s the finished bag in “tote bag mode”.



And here in “messenger bag mode”.




The antique brass hardware for this project was from Buckle Guy and Emmaline Bags. Both, excellent sources.



We’re all smiles with our fur bags! Have YOU made one yet?


21 thoughts on “David’s Bag

  1. Between the links to super useful stuff and the bag for a guy who does important work I get (front of house theater worker here), you are a gift. Dreamy! Gorgeous! And the bag's pretty good looking, too.


  2. Terrific bag for a fine friend! Everything you make is of such high quality. David's skills remind me of a favorite first date from many years ago: morning at the lumber yard, afternoon at a gallery.


  3. I'm bookmarking this article! I want to make a bag for my art supplies. When I come up for air after my fitting and tailoring classes, there's a lot of good advice here.

    Congrats to your friend David as owner of a spiffy new bag!


  4. Corey, I used the Lucy backpack pattern (PDF) from Swoon Patterns as my jumping off point. It's a nice little pattern. Make a mock-up of it and you'll figure out ways to tweak it so that it fits your needs. That's the real fun of bag making.


  5. Hi Duane, discovered your blog at the end of last week. When I find a blog I think I'd like to get to know, I go back to their beginning blog and read everything up to current. Spent the last weekend reading your complete blog. What A Journey! Love your style and the way you write. There were times I've not laughed so much and so hard in a long time. Love your sense of humor. The clothing you produce is outstanding. I signed up to follow you, hope it took, and look forward to what you are up to now. I think you have a son getting married soon, and I think you must have some kilts finished. Thank you for a GOOD READ! Wish you the best.


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