He casually mentioned how worn it was when he was visiting at Halloween and also reported that it had been the perfect daily bag - just the right size, ideal pockets etc. OK, hint taken. You need a new one, right?!
I didn't get allow him any design input, except that we had agreed it might be made from the leftover blue canvas from P's original Messenger Bag
That fabric was gifted to me by a local canvas shop that makes tarpaulins and awnings etc. I'd wandered in and asked for offcuts of something akin to Kevlar to patch the knees of my toddlers jeans. The guys kindly gave me a narrow length of this insanely thick canvas that I'm sure is intended for external building use. From memory I swore back then that I would NEVER use the remaining parts, yet for some reason I didn't throw them out and here I am two and a half years later...
There wasn't enough of the canvas for the whole bag, which was certainly a good thing. Some heavy weight grey denim for the front and side pockets was tough enough but still easier than more layers of that blue stuff. that was also leftovers (from here) and bias binding made from leftovers too (this dress)
The strap buckle happened to be in my stash as well. I think it had been salvaged from an old bag that was turfed out during the last major wardrobe clean out. I didn't think of it, but by using a buckle that creates a loop the strap ends up much shorter than when you use a sliding buckle where half the strap length is still functional.
I had to cut another piece of denim for the strap and join the pieces on an angle before refolding and edgestitching them.
There's a couple of other modifications which I've made before. Firstly a front closing buckle and strap and secondly a redrafted and slightly enlarged interior pocket flap (comparison of original and my size is seen here).
Well, apparently Nick's "thing" is the elephant. So, for the only purchased part of the whole project I hit up Spotlight for some heavily reduced $4/metre elephant quilting cotton for the lining.
But hang on, SPACE INVADERS I hear you say.... Yep, couldn't resist adding a Galactica cross stitch shooter and a few bullets to the bag front. Here's the blog post with the full fleet and a downloadable pattern if you're keen.
I knew the canvas fabric didn't wash too well so I drew the pattern out on graph paper then punched holes through each grid corner and pencil marked the fabric.
Nick's previous bag had a nice, dorky name tag up the side of the strap which read "Uncle Nick's Bag". I don't know if that's a design feature that he had liked or not, but thought he may have become used to having his name on his bag, so this one got a name tag too. Cross stitched to match the Space Invaders theme.
While the total cost for making the bag may have only been $4, now that it's finished I'll be spending some money on new sewing needles, new pins, and some of those Clover sewing clips. At least this time around I did own a thimble and that saved me a trip to casualty to retrieve pins embedded in my fingers!
I hope he likes it!
Pattern: Messenge Bag from Little Things To Sew
Size: Large (adult)
Modifications: Enlarged front pocket flaps. Addition of closure strap and different strap buckle style