Oval Messenger Bag with Free Pattern

Hi Guys! Real life has been really hectic recently so my sewing hobby took a back seat for a few weeks. I doodled this design during a boring meeting at work and decided it was pretty and practical enough to make into a real project. It’s a simple egg shaped messenger bag with an angled front pocket. The design looks stunning with a pair of coordinated fabrics. The front pocket is large enough to hold all your necessities when on the run. The bag doesn’t have closure but the pattern can be adjusted for a closure of preference. The dimensions approximate to about 12″ x 14″. It’s the perfect size; not too big, not too small. I made a strap with coordinated fabric but I think I may use belting for the next one. I also decided to change the name from Retro to Oval Messenger bag after I already created the pictures, so sorry for the mix-up. Enjoy the free pattern and tutorial!

IMG_3692 with ID

I bought this fabric from my local Joann’s fabric store. I love the how well the gray and peach paired for this bag.


The binding really brings together the two fabrics well. I am definitely making a few more of these bags as presents.


IMG_3682 with ID

Your Supplies

1 yard main fabric

1/2 yard coordinate fabric

 1 yard fleece lining

About 14″ of binding for the front pocket ( you will have extra)

Print free pattern HERE. Please read the first page of the pattern on how to print and piece all the pieces together. I used 1/2″ seam allowance.

Let’s get started!

Here are all your pieces for the main bag (One main back, two main lining back, two main interfacing, one center overlay, two pocket/secondary overlay (mirror images) *sorry this picture shows two identical images instead of mirror images (I initially made a mistake)*, one pocket interfacing, one right front side piece, one left front side piece)


Let’s first start with the pocket/secondary overlay.

Iron on fleece interfacing to wrong side of one of your pieces.


Baste stitch (longest stitch length) the other pocket piece to the first pocket piece right side facing out forming a sandwich with the interfacing in between.


Next, put the binding on the top of the pocket sandwich you just made.



Now, sew the pocket to the first overlay with both right sides facing up.



Take the two front side pieces and sew them to the side of the middle piece you just completed. Sew right sides together. Iron down neatly.



Here is what you completed front piece will look like.


Once you have your main front completed, iron on the fleece interfacing to it as well as your main back piece. The picture below shows both the front and back piece with fleece interfacing on it. Your front main piece will be slightly smaller than your main because of all the seam allowances you used. See next steps on trimming the back to match the front.


Next, **LINE UP THE BACK PIECE TO THE MAIN FRONT PIECE RIGHT SIDES TOGETHER. YOU WILL HAVE TO TRIM OFF SOME OF THE BACK PIECE TO ALIGN AND FIT TO YOUR FRONT SO THAT ALL SIDES MATCH UP (sorry I did not take a picture). ** Sew the back piece to the front piece right sides together. Turn inside out.


Take your lining piece and sew right sides together.


Fit the main bag into the lining right sides facing each other. IMG_3670

Sew the top all the way around leaving about 5″ open.


Turn it inside out and top stitch all the way around closing your opening.



Now onto the straps

You will need to measure how long you want your straps to be based on whether you want to wear it as a messenger or over the shoulder bag.  The length of mine ended up being about 30″ with a width of about 3.5″. Iron on regular interfacing on the wrong side.


Fold in and iron down about 1/2″ on each side.


Then, fold in the center. Sew all the way down. IMG_3677   IMG_3678

Next, fold in the ends and sew a square X on the side to ensure it is secure. Repeat on the other side.


That’s it! Enjoy your bag!



IMG_3692 with ID

Thanks for visiting and Happy Sewing!



  1. This is gorgeous! I can’t wait to make one, I’ll definitely need it this summer!!

    Thanks for what you do,


  2. Thank you! It is quite lovely and would make a great carrying tote.


  3. WOW!~ That is the cutest bag!!!!!!

    Your patterns are going to keep me busy this summer!!

    Great job!
    Thanks for all the great tutorials!

  4. Super cute!!! Perfect for my new summer bag!

  5. superstitches says:

    Love this design.

  6. Thank you for sharing the free tutorial! Love the bag and the fabrics you have used!

  7. Tiffany says:

    Great tutorial!!!! I want to make this! Instead of the strap on the outside, I'm going to see if i can get it to work with the strap sewn to the inside of the two layers. Clear as mud right? Lol

  8. patternpile says:

    This bag will be featured at PatternPile.com shortly. Nice job!

  9. Thank you very much for your pattern!
    I realised it yesterday for a present for a teeny-birthday.
    Look at my blog! http://bysusuko.blogspot.de/2014/05/oval-messenge
    Greetings from Berlin, Germany,
    My recent post Oval Messenger Bag

  10. Fabulous – I shall be making one!!

  11. Fantastic bag! I love the pattern and the fabrics, thank you so much! I think I will add a magnetic clasp to the front pocket- making this is my project for the weekend!

  12. Thanks a million! I made 2 of these as part of my daughter's teacher gifts this year! They LOVED them!

  13. Thanks for the pattern, so cute. I am going to make one of these with lots of pockets inside for organization and a kitty or fox face applique peeking out of the pocket on the front..

  14. Very cute purse I love it.

  15. BritStitcher says:

    Loved this the minute I found it. I was looking for a bag idea to make for a friend who plays netball. Had a fat quarter of Nutex's Court Time Netball Players fabric, so needed to "fudge" with other fabric to make it, but it worked. Added a flap with buttonhole and accessories to put inside. Thank you. Thank you!

  16. BritStitcher says:

    Just a quick note to let you know that allfreesewing.com has posted one of my photos of my version of your wonderful bag. It's the one with the accessories. Look forward to trying more of your tutorials in future.

  17. It's an amazing bag ! Thanks for the pattern. I can't wait to make one myself ;-)

  18. Thank you so much! Love it

  19. I just finished making this yesterday and LOVE it! I got a lot of compliments and surprised looks when I said that I made it myself. Thank you for posting such awesome instructions with pictures that made it so much easier to follow along.

  20. Cupcakes5 says:

    What a lovely bag, Remona! I love it. I hope you'll consider sharing it (or anything else you would like!) at my weekly link party, Project Inspire{d}. I hope to see you there. Have a wonderful week.

  21. Shaelyn Ward says:

    I am trying to print the oval bag pattern and it is coming out huge. You say it is approx. 12" x 12" mine is at least 16" x 14 " what am I doing wrong
    Thank you

  22. Nancy Shaner says:

    Does the pattern include the 1/2 " seam allowance??

  23. Thank you so much for this tutorial. I learned so much and had so much fun making it! Check out my work here:
    My recent post The Hippy Dippy Bag

  24. I found this tutorial a couple of days ago just in time for my mom's birthday! I literally just finished making the bag, and I can't wait to give it to her!

  25. Howdy! Would you mind if I share your blog with my twitter
    group? There’s a lot of people that I think would really appreciate your
    content. Please let me know. Cheers

  26. So easy to make yet it looks super involved. I used this pattern and made myself a Slytherin house bag. The only thing I changed was I put binding around the opening as well as along the pocket because I loves the bound pocket so much. Thanks for posting! Think I’ll start stock piling these for birthdays :)

  27. Thank you, it's beautiful!

  28. I love this! I made mine today, and it's wonderful! It was quite easy, and I just love the way it turned out. I used a belt instead of making a strap, and all the fabric I used was from old or thrifted clothes. So fun! Thank you for sharing this tutorial!
    My recent post I finally sewed something!

  29. The instructions could use some improvements especially for a novice like me who has come back to sewing after 15 or so years. Love the bag and am figuring it out but wish they were more clear and consistent. Amounts of fabric are way too much and there isn't a suggested amount for interfacing or an amount for the strap or better instructions for a binding, etc.

  30. Dear Remona,
    Thank you very much for sharing this pattern and providing the photos with the instructions. I just finished my first oval bag and it's wonderful: http://rigoleta-at-home.blogspot.com/2014/10/day-

    Best wishes & good luck with all your research and crafts
    My recent post Day twenty two: butterfly effect

  31. I visited many blogs but the audio feature for audio sonngs current at this web site is truly wonderful.

  32. Me encanta! estas hecha una artista!!

  33. I LOVE the fabric – AND the bag!!

  34. This bag as the kids can say is the bomb!!! Colors, style and convenience Thanks so much for sharing SMILE

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