Make your own bag: A beginner’s guide

Do you want to make your own bags? Here is the lowdown of what you need to know.

1. Decide on what material(s) you want to use. Do you want to use leather or perhaps a fabric? Do you want to make a vegan bag and use cork fabric, faux leather or perhaps Piñatex (made with pineapple leaves)? The options are endless. If you are using a thinner material, you can use an interfacing to give the bag more structure. 

2. Get the right tools. Depending on what material you use to make your bags, you’ll most likely need some tools whether it’s a sewing machine or a bunch of leather crafting tools. Will you be stitching the bag by hand? If so, you’ll need the right tools, a good quality thread and some hand-stitching needles.

3. Buy a pattern. If you are a complete beginner to bag making, you’ll probably want to buy a pattern. You can find lots of patterns, even free patterns, on different websites. We have beginners’ bag making courses on our site and you get a bag pattern with each course.


4. Consider making your own pattern. If you can’t find a pattern you like online, you could consider making your own. It’s best to start with a sketch and determining the dimensions you want for the bag. Then, make a prototype. You can use paper or a fabric of some kind for this. Depending on what material you want to make the bag in, you might not want to use that same material for prototyping; e.g. if you’re using leather for the bag, it is an expensive material to waist for prototyping.


5. Start making. If you are following an online course, that is a great way to start making bags as a beginner. If you are brave to try it on your own, just go at it and learn by doing. That is the best way to learn and it’s OK to make mistakes. You learn so much from them!

Bag making basics