Saturday 28 January 2012


If this was my handbag I'd fill it with All the Things

When we visited my folks last summer and I forgot to pack my handbag, my mum let borrow her all-time-favourite bag. She didn't use it anymore because she thought it was passed its best; I have lower standards so have been using it ever since. In exchange for borrowing her bag (and taking it back to Scotland with me), I agreed to make her an even better one.


I belong to the school of thought that you can measure the relative awesomeness of a bag by the number of pockets / compartments, with bonus points for extra zippers. This bag?

back pocket

One deep zippered back pocket that goes all the way down to the base.......

front zipper

One deep zippered front pocket that goes all the way down to the base.......

pouch pocket

A front pouch pocket with a boxy three-dimensional base and magnetic closure*. Inside this pocket is a two-section patch pocket with two pen holders.

side pocket

Elasticated pockets inserted into each of the side seams for phones and keys...

recessed zip

A recessed zipper to the top. Speaking of which, here's some advice from me: do not decide to figure out how to insert a recessed zipper when the bag is 90% finished. It's too late by then. I ended up chopping around the whole bag, sandwiched the zipper panel in between, and then sewed it back together. I was a nervous wreck.


And to the inside a cavernous section and four side pockets. Bringing us up to a grand total of 14 separate compartments in which to stash your stuff.


And here my mum is holding it**. See how the adjustable strap allows her to carry it on her shoulder (as she likes to do)? It also allows you to carry it cross-body (as I like to do). Which will be handy when I steal it back next summer.

*The original bag had a flap with velcro. How dumb is that? The answer is heaps. It alternated between laddering my tights and snagging on my sweater sleeves and gloves.
** And a Spongebob inflatable. I can't explain this.


  1. That is a fab bag!! Velcro is basically the root of all evil...

  2. It's beautiful! Well done you ! Those zippers are very very neat too. Love it x great colours, your mum is one lucky gal :)

  3. Great plan - making the gift that gives right back demonstrates extreme intelligence and cunning! Hee hee! It is a really lovely bag, great work - I'm also a lover of stash pockets and the combination of fabrics is yummy!

  4. The detail is amazing, and I love the Joel Dewberry print. :-)

  5. I love it. I'm a sucker for tons of pockets, as well, and damn, you delivered. :)

  6. Wow!! Great bag. I am a huge fan of bags with loads of pockets.

  7. Amazing bag! I would love one, too :)

  8. Deanna (countrybumkin@q.com29 January 2012 at 01:27

    is there a pattern we can copy???? LOVE the bag!

    1. Maybe at some point! I need to make me one when I find some time :)

  9. Love this bag, but even more than the bag, I love your title "All the Stuff"... it makes me wonder... when does the narwhal bacon? 0_o And if you know what that means, then you understand why "all the stuff" is comical to me. ;0)

    This bag must have taken quite a while to finish. I LOVE pockets too!

  10. I am in awe of your awesomeness!!
    Please tell me there is a pattern for this bag?
    I am due to have a baby in three weeks and still havent found a nappy bag that I wouldnt feel embarassed to carry (Winnie the Pooh? No thanks).
    I am also addicted to pockets <3

  11. gorgeous bag! I love adjustable strap as they easily can be made to fit across a buggy, so useful

  12. Awesome! I know you said you were a nervous wreck, but it must be SO satisfying making something with all those compartments & pouches - a real jigsaw- & putting it all together so neatly.

  13. When I make a bag there is no less than 12 pockets inside and out. I love this one and will have to check it out closely to get some new ideas from it. One of the pockets that my friends like is the one I put inside for reminds me of the pocket-savers that men used to wear in their shirt pockets. I usually make them to hold at least 3 pens and a larger channel for a nail file or emory board. and right next to that is the checkbook pocket.

  14. I'm sure your mom will wear it for a long time! Fabulous work :)