Embroidered Shoulder Bag

I made this bag using my Reversible Shoulder Bag pattern. (See links in the sidebar to download the pattern for free!) I had forgotten how fast this bag is to make! I enjoyed doing a project that was so fast and required no fitting. I made a couple of changes to this version. First, the embroidery which I did before sewing the pieces together. I shared the beginning of this embroidery a couple weeks ago and finished the bag last weekend. The birds are because birds are pretty and Learning Music is my brother's awesome band. Yeah, kind of geeky on my part. (Side note/shameless plug: Check out his music subscription service where you can download a new awesome album every month for the price of whatever you want to donate at LearningMusicMonthly.com. Trust me you won't regret it.)

The other change I made was to insert the bottom of the bag with the short ends centered on the side seams of the body. It's a different way to go but makes it a little more awkward to carry.

Someone requested a copy of the pattern not tiled for printing on a large format printer so I've made a downloadable version available by clicking here. The document is 19 inches wide and 29 inches high. I'll also add a link to the sidebar.

Another side note, I've had a couple of inquiries from people asking if they can use the pattern I created to make bags for sale. While I do provide the pattern for free download and personal use, I don't authorize it's use for profit. This is standard protocol for patterns and copyright. An exception is the fabulous BurdaStyle.com which allows the use of their patterns for profit. Their patterns are open source and copyright free (explanation here). If you need a pattern for bags to make for sale, check out these BurdaStyle patterns: the Diana, the Charlie.

The alternative is to create your own patterns. You are welcome to use my pattern as inspiration, and make changes to create your own design. It's really hard to say no to requests, but I don't feel comfortable authorizing unlimited use of my pattern for others profit. Making patterns can take some practice and always takes multiple tries to get right. The more sewing you do, the easier it will be to create your own patterns. Just don't be afraid. Give it a try and embrace your own creativity.

Please continue to download the pattern and make the Reversible Shoulderbag for personal use. I love to hear from you and I love to see photos too. You can upload photos to the Flickr group too.


  1. The embroidery looks great. I went back to your original pattern and made the bag. It's a great shape. However, I have one question: somehow I ended up with a twisted handle. It was fine before I sewed the side seams and I assume that's where I went wrong because at first I sewed each side together (that is, 4 sides) before realizing I did it wrong. So I ripped it out and resewed it, which worked. But I'm trying to figure out where I went wrong with the handle so I can fix it next time. Any thoughts or tips would be much appreciated. Thank you!

  2. Hi two hippos!

    I think the handle must have been twisted while sewing the side seams, in step 5. To prevent it happening again, I would take care while sewing the sides. Following along with the pictures in the tutorial and keeping things flat should help. Best of luck!


  3. hi,
    i absolutely love your blog.

    i dont know if you gonna read this msg, but, im just wondering what do you mean by 'pattern not tiled for printing on a large format printer'? Im new to sewing =)

  4. Hi -IS-,

    Thanks for visiting! What I should have said was "not tiled" and "intended to be printed on a large format printer".

    A tiled document is broken up into a bunch of standard size (8.5x11) pages that after printing need to be taped together.
    Hope that helps!

  5. Hi Beth! Thanks for the free pattern, I made a bag from your pattern, you can see it in my blog, http://blognyaglenda.blogspot.com/2010/11/i-made-bag.html. It's easy and turned out great, I'd love to make another one with embroidery too. You are really an inspiration! Thank you thank you thank you!



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