How to sew a travel bag 👜 Tutorial with free pattern

Autor: Katia
9 June, 2023

You’re probably planning your summer holidays, so it’s time to think about sewing something useful and practical that can share incredible experiences with you. Would you like to learn how to easily make your own travel bag? On this occasion, Gabry @gabry_creations shows you how to sew a unique custom-made travel bag with this step-by-step tutorial. So that your travel bag reflects your personal style and adapts perfectly to your needs.

How to sew a travel bag

How to sew a travel bag: Easy tutorial with free pattern

Materials needed

Before starting, make sure to have the following materials on hand:

  • 1.20 meters of canvas: choose a long-lasting and resistant fabric. Go for one of our canvas fabrics. If you want your bag to be stiffer, you need interfacing to apply to the bag lining pieces.
  •  3 meters of backpack tape that is 3-mm wide. Each strap should measure 124 cm.
  • One 44-cm zipper.
  • Fabric scissors: some sharp scissors that are only used for cutting fabric will be really useful.
  • Usual sewing notions (tape measure, pins, sewing machine, etc.)

Travel bag measurements and pieces

  • 2 rectangles of outer fabric measuring 64 x 50 cm
  • 2 rectangles of inner fabric or lining measuring 64 x 50 cm
  • 3 rectangles measuring 20 x 21 cm for the pockets. 2 outer pockets and 1 inner pocket.

Tips and tricks before starting to sew

  • Wash and iron your fabric before starting. This will prevent the bag from shrinking or changing shape after sewing it.
  • Place the fabric on a flat surface so that it’s easy to cut each of the bag pieces.
  • Serge or zigzag stitch along all the edges of the pieces to prevent the fabric from fraying.
  • Iron the bag to set the seams.

How to sew a travel bag

Steps to sew your travel bag

Let’s create the pockets and apply them

  1. Start by ironing the edges of the rectangles that you’ve cut to 20 x 21 cm. Fold approximately 1 cm and iron it. These rectangles will be your 2 outer pockets and 1 inner pocket.
  2. You must sew the outer pockets you’ve made to the 2 outer rectangles measuring 64 x 50 cm. Place them in the center and 14 cm from the bottom edge. Sew 2 pockets to the outside and 1 pocket to the inner panel.

Add straps

  1. Place the strap on the outer piece, as you see in the photo, level with the pocket. The strap is also used to block the pockets and conceal the seams.
  2. Place both outer pieces with right sides facing each other and sew along the bottom edge with straight stitch. Repeat on the inner pieces.

How to sew a travel bag

3. With a 10 x 10 cm template, cut the outer piece and lining of the bag (along the bottom seam), as shown in the image.

Sew the zipper

  1. Place the zipper with the right side facing up on top of one of the outer fabric pieces with the right side facing down and the lining fabric underneath, creating a sandwich with the zipper in the middle. Baste or pin into place, sew using a zipper presser foot. Repeat for the other side of the zipper.
  2. Next, run a straight stitch along the right side of the zipper so the seam sits nicely.

How to sew a travel bag

Sew the bag pieces

  1. Finally, place both bag pieces with the outer fabrics facing each other and the inner fabrics facing each other. Sew around the entire edge leaving a small opening in the lining to turn it inside out.
  2. Backstitch to stop it from unraveling.
  3. Lastly, turn the bag right side out and close the opening in the lining.

To make sure your travel bag lasts a long time, reinforce the seams at the stress points. This includes the straps, which are under the most pressure. Go over the seams several times with your machine, and your travel bag will be ready for you to fill it with memories.

How to sew a travel bag