I've been looking for something to do with this vintage rice bag that I got a while back, and I finally realized it would make a great messenger bag. So, here's how I did it!
P.S. Instead of d-rings I actually used belt buckles off an old purse, I just took off the thingy that goes through the holes, not sure what that's called...Also if you don't have a rice bag you could easily just make an outer panel out of fabric.
Cut two rectangles, 15" wide x 10" tall with the one long side on a fold. So you will have one back panel and one front panel, each measuring 15" x 20" when unfolded.
Cut two pockets 5 1/2" wide x 6 1/2" tall, with one short side on fold. You will have two pockets that measure 6 1/2" x 11" when unfolded.
I made my pockets so that they just fit over an iPhone, you can make them any size.
With right side together sew down long side of pockets. Turn right-side out, tuck in raw bottom edge about a half inch. Sewing close to the edge of the pockets, sew on pockets so that the fold is at the top. I sewed them 2 1/2" from the bottom of my panel.
The panel you sewed the pockets on is now the back panel.
With right sides together , pin down long sides. Sew down sides using 1/2 inch seam allowance.
I use a 1/2" seam allowance unless otherwise noted.
Turn panels right-side out but only half way. I know that sounds funny, I'll try to make this easy.
Pull the top out over the bottom so that the raw edges meet up. I hope that make sense, maybe the picture will help.
This is what your bag should look like.
Pin along the bottom, don't pin back and front together yet though.
Turn your bag inside out pocket side up.
Now, if you're using a rice bag place it between front and back panels wrong side up, matching bottom edge of bag with top edge of rice bag.
If you're making a front flap the measurements of the rice bag are 13" wide x 18 1/2" tall, not including seam allowances, except for the bottom seam.
Sew on fabric flap same as rice bag.
Finish the bottom edge so it won't ravel.
Turn the bag right-side out, it will look like this.
Now it's time to put in the zipper, this part gets a little tricky so I will do my best to explain how I did it.
With the zipper closed pin to front panel. Sew using a 1/4" seam allowance.
Open zipper (or if you can pin it to the other side of the bag then unzip it) pin and sew it the same as for the front.
For the ends I just tacked them down underneath by hand.
Lay bag face-down, fold the rice bag up so that it lays flat over the bag.
Sew across top of bag about an inch from zipper teeth. Being sure not to sew it to the front of the bag.
Cut Strap 21" long x 3" wide. I made my strap really long you can adjust it for how long you want it, but I would start with it long you can always cut it.
Fold in half lengthwise with right sides together, sew down length of strap.
Turn right-side out, I know this can be annoying, the easiest way for me to do it is to put a safety pin on one end and work it through.
Now, this is the way I did it, I worked the inside seam open so that it would lay flat and the seam was in the center of the strap, and ironed it. This makes a 1" strap.
Sew down both sides of the strap 1/4" away from sides.
Cut another piece like the strap that's only 12 1/2" long. Sew it like long strap.
Cut two pieces like the long strap that are 2 3/4" long. Sew long sides together as for long strap. You can sew down the outer edges like the long strap, I didn't because I forgot. oops...
Time to start adding the hardware! These are the pieces I used. They were salvaged from an old purse.
Take one of two the smallest strap piece, and fold in both short ends 1/2" toward the wrong side of strip, then fold again(like a hem).
Fold in half around base of d-ring.
If possible (it wasn't possible for me because my fabric was too thick for my pins) pin to bag over side seam, with the top of the strip about 1/4" below top of bag. Sew across the width of the strip under d-ring 1/4" from bottom of strip. Do the same for the other side.
Take the 12 1/2" long strip, turn under one end 1/2" then turn under again (the same way I did the small strip).
Loop through d-ring and fold it about an inch.
Sew across the same way you did on the smallest strip.
Feed the other end of the strip through the slide adjuster, and sew it like the other ends.
Take long strip and sew it onto the d-ring like the other side. Feed it through the slide adjuster then hem the end. This is what mine looked like when I was done I didn't really feed it through correctly but it looks good to me!
Well, that's how I made it!
Thanks for reading this tutorial if you like it please favorite it, look at my other tutorials, checkout my blog, and if you made this please add your version, I would love to see it!
--The Broken Thimble