FO? WIP? Laptop bag? - DONE! It's a messenger bag!

Hi everyone!! Been reading about felting sweaters to make 'em into bags, so scrounged up a nice cabled one f/Goodwill, put some interfacing on it, sewed in a lining w/pockets.

I was thinking to make an envelope style messenger bag, but it just doesn’t seem to scream it. I took pics w/my 15" laptop in it, 'cause it fit :wink:

I tried to make handles out of more sweater w/the cables running lengthwise, but it didn’t look good :verysad: , so wondering what to do now. I have a belt f/my dad that’d look great and I’d like to include it in a project I like as a way of remembering him, but the one I have in mind (tooled!) is too short.

What do you think it wants to be?? :shrug:

*** UPDATE *** *** UPDATE *** *** UPDATE ***

Ok, the baby has declared itself a messenger bag :wink:

Scored an AWEsome :happydance: leather link belt at Goodwill for the strap, then went to Joann’s and got the applique and the PERFECT attachments for the strap - if you look closely, you can see they’re suspender attachments!! Perfect 'cause I didn’t plan at all on how to attach the strap, and didn’t have any place TO attach them. Super easy! Plus they’re detachable!

The flower pin used for the closure is made outta copper petals - matching the copper suspender attachments, and I added some small beads at the ends of the leather tie closure.

So the tally is: Goodwill for sweater - felted, for lining (nice flat sheet), and belt/strap. SCORE!! I’m totally into this upcycling!! :cheering:

That’s just beautiful!!

That turned out great!

Thank you, Jan and Ronda!!

I feel like it’s not quite done, and after surfing for a little inspiration, have decided to add some trim to the flap and strap - will post an update when done (hopefully later today :wink:

Very nice! I think it’s turning out great.

What a great way to recycle! It looks wonderful!

:heart: it!
gotta protect that mac! :teehee:

I think it wants to be a satchel with straps like this

What if you make straps like the ones for the “Rock Star” bag from Knitty Gritty. They essentially make a SS tube and felted it, they put some cording through it for stability. Here is a link to the instructions: Rock Star bag instructions BTW, that bag looks terrific!

That is totally cool!

Wow! Thanks for all the props and suggestions - I asked, y’all deliver! :cheering:

LOOOOVE :heart: that satchel!! Where’s that from??

Not sure if I’ve got enough sweater left for making straps (or at least, sightly ones). Off to the local fabric store to hunt a wide ribbon down, and attach it on the sides with those buckle-like thingies (technical term for it, I believe ;).

Will post finished pics soon!!

wow! that looks beautiful! great job i love the lining too!

I agree, Meg - I love that fabric for a lining. It’s actually from an entire flat sheet - with this great antiquey print. Am planning on using it in another bag - made f/a silky rayon large rib corduroy in a sage green, so should actually match!! Lovin’ this upcycling!! :cheering:

VERY HIP!!! I love it!

Great job!

oh my god! it’s perfect!
how did you go about picking a sweater? and what sections did you felt to get a bag that shape? i’m trying to picture it in my head, and i’m having a rough time with it! is there a website with more of these lovely creations?
i’m intregued to see what other genius is making bags and what they are turning out like.
i was thinking maybe i could visit my local salvation army and see if i can find some fun sweaters to felt, or rummage around in my closet to see what i have. i love the cables!

Super cute! And how cool that it’s recycled. Love what you’ve done!

WOW that is too cute! :heart: :cheering:

OK that is super cute!!! I love the color! :cheering:

:rofl: I’m laughing 'cause this is SOOOO fun!! :wink: Thanks for the props, everyone!

Meghan: no pattern, no blog/website, just did it outta my head (which can be dangerous sometimes :wink: ). Went to Goodwill (oddly enough, the best picks for me are right when I walk in the door), and on the 1st trip totally scored: the sweater used for the messenger bag is a nice 100% lambswool mens (Large) sweater, and also got 2 (TWO!! :cheering: ) women’s cashmere sweaters which I’m planning on felting for shibori later on. Not bad for $3.50 each :happydance: (but wish Goodwill would have dollar days, I seem to be hooked on this!). I just picked the sweater 'cause it was 100% wool, good quality, and cabled all over… waited until it spoke and said “make me a messenger bag!” :teehee:

I felted the entire sweater first, then cut out the front and back. The back I cut out the entire panel, and folded over enough to make the flap and cut it there. Used these shapes to cut out the interfacing (and lining) and ironed the interfacing on. Then put both wrong sides tog and sewed it up (tried doing it in a slightly trapezoidal shape - not entirely successful, but oh well).

I then cut out and sewed on the pockets for the lining, guesstimating where they needed to land (thankfully, ok position). I then put the WS of the lining to the WS of the bag, and sewed it in (w/machine) on just the rim of the bag (i.e., top rim of front panel, and edge of trapezoid flap only). I read alot on the internet that folks handsew it in, which is great if you don’t want the seam to show - in my case, I folded over an edge of the sweater (seam allowance) over the lining and interfacing edge, and sewed/created the seam (chk pics out for better idea).

I did add the button (for leather ties - inside flap) before sewing the very top edge of the flap tog, and added more interfacing for the back of the button to the lining to make it sturdier. The copper flower’s a pin, so easy. And the suspender attachments were awesome!! - just push a tack thru the material and the outside button locks in! I’d been scratching my head on the straps - didn’t have a clue how to do 'em as I hadn’t planned that (bad). Worked out great!

This was the first time I’d EVER created a bag like this, took lotsa head scratching :??: and visualizing, and some sketching. Maybe a little ambitious to start with. I searched alot on the web just for ideas, but then came up with my own. Hope that helps!!

Next project: felting another GW sweater, into a rounder bag (this may be done more ‘conventionally’ - sewing first, then felting. We’ll see!).