Whether you are a professional or an amateur sewer, there is something special about making a bag at home. Not only are handmade bags more durable (if you are professional of course), but there are also more customization options to choose from. I mean who would not want to carry around and show off to people their own made leather bags. Especially knowing the fact that no one else in the world has one like that. I think it’s pretty cool. In this quick How To Make A Leather Bag At Home guide we will cover the most important aspects of how to prepare, plan, design, draw and manufacture your own leather bag.
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Before designing your bag, you need to consider what it is for and how will you use it. That means that you should opt for a type of bag that can serve you in both formal and casual occasions. Unless of course you want to make two bags for each occasion.
A tote bag is a fantastic option because it is quite versatile and it can carry a lot of weight. Apart from that, it is stylish, and it goes with pretty much anything in your closet. It is usually a go-to option for women, as they are a bit more girly.
If you wish to make something more spacious than that, then opt for a duffle bag or even a travel bag. That way, you can use it everyday or for when you are on the road. These two bags make perfect companions on your trips to the gym, weekend getaways or a sleepover at your friends.
Then there are more of the professional bags like business bags, messenger bags, laptop bags, etc. They will serve you well if you are a working professional, easily fitting your laptop, A4 sized document folders, pens, business cards and so on.
Therefore, there is a saying that knowing what you want and coming up with great and awesome ideas is always more difficult than doing a technical work. If you dear to try making yourself an awesome leather bag, you will see that coming up with an idea is not as easy. That’s why those big company CEOs make so much money. They think.
Planning Your Design
Before trying to make an excellent pattern for a leather bag out of scratch, make a drawing first. Whether you draw it by hand or use a designing software, it is crucial to make a mock-up of your bag. This mock-up will allow you to see how the bag is going to turn out. Furthermore, you can make any changes to the drawing first. Therefore, you will lower your chances of making a mistake later on.
This is one of the hardest parts for a sewer. Because, once again, seeing the final result when there is nothing to look at is extremely hard. It may take you a while until you get that right drawing of your future leather bag. However, it is worth the effort.
Drawing A Pattern
If you are already experienced at making clothes, then creating a pattern for a leather bag should not be a problem. However, if you are new or you do not have any experience, it is vital to research pattern-making.
The pattern will contain individual parts of the bag that you can quickly assemble afterward. Therefore it’s almost like a puzzle: you make bunch of small parts, and at then end you have to put everything together to form a final picture, which is your leather bag.
Choosing The Material
A bag will be of high quality only if you choose the high quality material for it. Hit the sewing stores and choose the best leather for your bag. Why leather? First of all, because it has one of the best price-to-quality ratio. Also, it ages really nicely. With time, a good leather bag will only look better. And finally, it is easy to take a good care of leather bags.
Remember, different bags call for different softness, so make sure you are picking out the right leather for the bag you are creating.
Transferring The Pattern And Making A Prototype
After you make the pattern, you can go ahead and transfer it onto the leather. Make sure to pin the paper pattern to avoid it slipping off.
However, it is advisable to make a prototype bag before sewing the parts together. That way, you can check how the bag wears and creases on your shoulder or in your hand. That is an essential step because once you assemble all the pieces, it is hard to reuse the leather again if you made a mistake.
Assembling The Bag And Stitching
The better the stitching, the longer your bag will last. Opt for professional machines while assembling your bag. That way, the quality will be better, and the bag will be more durable.
Most sewing machines are not capable of sewing leather. So, if you do not have one, you can always sew it by hand. But I think is pretty obvious, that sewing leather by hand is not the easiest task. So perhaps, if you are not looking forward to becoming a professional leather bag maker for a living, try and borrow one of the sewing machines that is compatible for leather.
Be careful how you assemble the bag. If your design consists of many parts, it would be best if you numbered them all. That way, you will not get confused during this process, and the bag will turn out beautifully.
When it comes to handles, opt for sturdier material or maybe even layering. Layering the fabric will make the handles or straps more durable, and the bag can then carry a lot more weight. Therefore, high-quality leather is your best option.
Adding Buckles And Accessories
You may have already included pockets in your design. However, make sure you pick out the right fastening system for them. For interior pockets, opt for quality zippers. For outside pockets, you may choose zippers as well, or even buckles. It depends on your preference. However, if you decide on zippers, pick the brass ones because you do not have to change them regularly. They will last longer and be a safer choice overall.
Learning how to make a leather bag at home does not have to be too complicated. If you research this subject correctly, you may find it quite an effortless and satisfying experience. Handmade bags are a much better quality than industrial designs you may find in most fast fashion stores. Not only are they more durable, but they are quite long-lasting as well. In addition, they will not show signs of wear anytime soon.
Furthermore, knowing how to make a fantastic leather bag at home is a useful skill if you are planning to revamp your wardrobe. Leather bags are classy and sophisticated, so you can rest assured that you will be looking fabulous and stylish every time you wear your handmade piece.
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