Messenger bags are one of the most efficient and convenient bag styles out there. It’s roomy with a multitude of pocket space for various items. It’s ideal for a student, office worker, or casual individual. It’s perfect for carrying books, a laptop, tablet, or notebooks. Just about anything will fit in it. Additionally, it simply looks great and can be used by both genders.
What if you could make your own?
In this how-to, I’ll show you how you can put together your very own leather messenger bag easily.
First, it’s very important to get your materials. You’ll of course need leather, a leatherworking needle, some heavy duty thread, a measuring grid, a round plate, leather punch, leather finisher, and a straight edge. Leather can be found in particular fabric stores, but there are many online retailers to choose from. Just scour through the different options to find the best material, stain, and price. Unfortunately, leather cannot be purchased by the yard like fabric but by entire hides that are measured and priced in square feet. You’ll need roughly 20 square feet of hide to make a messenger bag that is 18×12 inches.
Many craft stores will carry various pieces of hardware, like belt buckles, loops, and rivets.
Next, you’ll need to cut up your leather pieces. For the flap, back, and bottom piece, you’ll need to cut it up 18×42 inches. Cut a second piece with the same dimensions. Then cut two strips that are 3×48 inches wide for your strap. You’ll use a straight edge for the cutting to achieve a clean and sharp cut. Cut four pieces that are 2×8 inches. These are for your frontal straps. Lastly, cut four strips that are 4×12 inches. These will be for your sides.
On both 18x42pieces, on one end, you’ll want to take your bowl and trace a curved line around the corners. Take your straight edge and cut. These two pieces will be the front, bottom, back, and flap part. Take both pieces and make sure the lined part is facing outwards with the interiors facing each other. About half an inch from the edge, sew both pieces together using your heavy duty thread.
Follow the same process with the long strap pieces (3×48), the front strap pieces (2×8), and the side pieces (4×12). With your long straps, make sure you sew in your belt buckle in between each piece.
On the side that is not curved, move about 10 inches inward, bend your leather to a 90 degree angle. Move three more inches in, bend it once more at 90 degrees. This will form the bottom of the bag. Move further about 14 inches and bend it once more at 90 degrees. This separates the back padding from the flap piece.
Place the side pieces (4×12) in the fold just formed (the bottom piece in between the back and frontal pieces). Using your heavy duty thread, sew together the side pieces with the bottom, front, and back pieces on the left and right side. Now we have the bag in place.
Next thing to tackle is the straps. The 2×8 strap pieces will need holes in it. Using your leather puncher about 3 inches down, make holes half an inch apart from one another until you reach half an inch from the bottom of the piece. About an 3 inches in, place your buckle in between the two front strap pieces. Do this for both strips. Sew them together with a buckle in between them using your heavy duty thread.
Next, on the flap of the bag, hold down the front straps using rivets. On the bottom part of the bag, do the same.
Lastly, use your leather punch to punch holes in both sides of the bag. On the other end of your bag straps, add on the clip. In the holes on the sides, add a loop for the clip to hook onto. Now you have a working strap. If the strap is too long, it can be cut and readjusted.
There you go! You have a simple and operational leather messenger bag. If you want a ready-made messenger bag, find the best from The Best Messenger Bags. You will find a lot of designs that will suit your specific needs. To begin with, you might want to check out Kenneth Cole Risky Business Messenger Bag.