How to Make a Simple Hobo Bag
Learn to sew a quick and simple cross-body hobo bag, in this project tutorial. This bag is stylish and easy to sew in a variety of fabrics. Download and print the free pattern here.
You’ll need 1/2 yard of tightly woven cotton fabric for the lining. Try something colorful and fun to give the inside of the bag personality.
Purchase 1 yard of fashion fabric: Look for nonstretch, medium- to heavyweight fabric, such as denim, corduroy, home décor fabric, faux suede, or leather.
Construct the strap, lining, and outer bag
Cut the fabric pieces as marked on the pattern: one strap, a front and back lining, and a bag front and back. The seam allowances are 3/8 inch wide throughout. Be sure to transfer marks to the wrong side of the fabrics, with a marking medium or tailor’s tacks. You’ll need the dots for reference when you’re sewing the bag pieces.
Fold, press, and topstitch the strap to start. Then construct the lining/facing units. Next, sew the exterior bag pieces.
Assemble the hobo bag
To install the lining, place it with right sides together inside the bag exterior. Stitch around the flap edges, starting and ending at the dart you marked earlier. Turn the bag right side out through the opening in the lining seam.
At each bag side, press the seam allowances to the inside. Slide a strap end into each opening, pin, then topstitch in place. Finally, machine-sew the lining’s turning opening closed.
Take your hobo bag in a new direction
This hobo bag style lends itself to a number of easy upgrades. Redraw the pattern to make a larger or smaller version or to vary the proportions. Make the strap shorter, or add an adjusting slider so you can change the length. Insert clips where the strap goes, and make interchangeable straps. Apply buttons, snaps, loops, ties, or other creative closures to secure the flaps. And don’t forget you can include decorative trims on the bag body or in the flaps’ edge seams. Consider the impact of superlong, swingy fringe on this bag. Either sew it in the flap seams, or apply it afterward.
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