Reversible Messenger Bag

Wednesday, April 9, 2014
I promised to share a tutorial for a 'boy' version of my reversible bag, so here it is!

I decided to go with the classic combination of red and navy blue. I used a lightweight twill fabric and decided to use some fusible fleece to make the fabric a bit more stable. I'm happy with the way it turned out. Not so happy with the white paint that managed to get on the edge of the bag's flap, but my little guy wanted to help with the painting...enough said.

I used my tutorial for the reversible bag here but changed it up a little bit for the messenger bag style. First, I cut the main body pieces into rectangles measuring 12.50 inches wide by 9 inches tall.  I also recommend cutting the strap pieces about 27 inches long, making the strap long enough to wear across the body.

To make the flap, I cut a piece that measured 9.5 inches wide by 8 inches tall from each fabric. I rounded the bottom corners of the flap and sewed with a .25 inch seam allowance, leaving the 'top' open. As shown below, you'll want to notch out your curve so it lays neatly when turned right side out.

Turn the flap right side out, press, and topstitch. Make the strap and bag body just like my reversible bag tutorial.

Now it's time to pin! I really don't like pinning, but there's definitely a plus to pinning here. You need to place the flap in between the bag body pieces and pinning will keep it in there and minimize shifting. I know, pinning is overrated, but do it anyway. :)

Topstitch around the opening of the bag and you are done! Unless you decide to paint an awesome lightening bolt or equally cool design on your bag. My son randomly decided on the lightning bolt so we went with it. Just a little bit of fabric paint goes a long way...

Now, when I drag my unwilling 4 year old on errands with me, he has a place to keep all his toys. Because it doesn't seem right for him to go anywhere without wanting to tote along ALL his favorite things. Please tell me I'm not the only one with kids who insist on bringing stuff into stores. Who then leave it in the cart. Then remember they forgot their toy after you've done up their carseat buckle, loaded up your purchases into the car, and are backing out of the parking spot that was at the very end of the lot. Please, tell me I'm not the only one!?!

I did sew the flap of the bag in so it would contrast the body of the bag. But you know what? I like it better the other way. I'm not going to change it, but wanted to show what it looks like both ways.

Add your favorite embellishments, appliques, or whatever you choose, to make this bag as unique as your little one!
Thanks so much for stopping by,



  1. Your bag is very beautiful, your boy must be so proud to have it!! Thanks for sharing with us

  2. It's the fabric requirement for this the same as the reversible bag? Or do I need more for the flap?

  3. It's the fabric requirement for this the same as the reversible bag? Or do I need more for the flap?

    1. The amount needed for the reversible bag should be enough for the messenger bag as well. Good luck on your project!

  4. Thank you for this! I'm making an explorer bag for my 4-yr old this afternoon for all the "treasures" he (always) finds on our walks. This will be so fun to make!


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