I’ve been wanting to make some more bags for a while, so when a pack of five sashiko-themed fat quarters from eBay somehow found its way into the house, I decided they’d be perfect to use in a quilted patchwork messenger bag.
I found a nice tutorial that looked straightforward, and then modified it somewhat to suit my mental image of what I wanted and my available materials. I decided that I wanted my finished squares to be 4″, and so my finished bag dimensions would be 16″ wide, 12″ tall and 4″ deep. I didn’t have any fusible fleece, but I was planning to quilt the outer panels and the lining fabric was interfaced with quite firm interfacing (which might have been the wrong way to do it, but it’s all a learning experiment). I pieced the squares into the appropriate arrangements of rectangles and quilted them with a simple in-the-ditch and then diagonal cross pattern before assembling the bag. I made an inner pocket for keys/mobile/etc. out of some left-over blue scraps, and to add some interest to the inside of the flap I cut out some simple shapes from some of the rest of the left-over scraps and used fusible web and zig-zag stitch to machine applique a dragonfly. With the last tiny scrap of red fabric left after cutting binding strips for the Bargello, I made a couple of loops for fastenings at the front.I need to make a couple of toggles to go with those loops, probably out of Fimo (I’m considering either faux ivory or faux wood), but I think it came out rather well. The strap’s a smidge wide, but I really like the general look of the bag itself and it’s HUGE inside – I folded up my almost-complete Bargello and fitted it in easily. It’d make a great swim- or beach-bag. Next time, I might try doing some piping around the outer edges to give it a little more definition.