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Flat Zipper Bag and Wallet

by jftesser on December 5, 2007

Intro: Flat Zipper Bag and Wallet

I'm always looking for my next new bag. In my recent searches I discovered this fascinating set of bags by Josh Jakus. I like my geometry a bit more random than he does, so I decided to adapt the idea to a more non-regular surface. The design and construction are pretty simple and, assuming you can get your hands on a sewing machine, you should be able to pull this off for less than $20.

Please leave comments, I'd really appreciate it!

$20. Please leave comments, I'd really appreciate it! Image Notes 1. 2. Purse wallet Step 1:

Image Notes

1.

2.

Purse

wallet

Step 1: Design your bag!

it! Image Notes 1. 2. Purse wallet Step 1: Design your bag! Image Notes 1. The

Image Notes

1. The unzipped purse

2. The unzipped wallet

This step isn't absolutely necessary. If you want, you can just use the two pdfs attached to this step and make the example purse and wallet. If you want to make your own, you'll need a computer with some kind of modeling or drawing software (I used Rhino, which is currently in beta and therefore *free* for Mac users), a printer, and some tape. Just follow the steps below:

1. Draw a curve, really any curve.

2. Copy it and rotate 180°, move the second curve so that its endpoints join with the endpoints of the first curve.

3. Repeat with several more curves, then print out small versions of each.

4. Cut out the shapes you've just printed and tape the edges together. Pick the one(s) you like the most and, if it going to be a bag, decide where your handle is going to

go.

5. Back on the computer, draw an ellipse for your handle at the positions you decided on in step 4. Make sure that you place both holes the same distance from one of

the two vertexes and has the same orientation with the curve (check out the attached example).

6. To actually make the purse, you'll need to have a zipper. Measure the zipper from the beginning of the teeth to the end. This probably won't be the length on the

package so you really do need to measure! Scale your drawing so that the length of one of the curves is that length.

7. You'll then need to offset both curves 1/8" toward the interior to allow space for the zipper. Connect them with two short straight segments. This, and the ellipses you

made, are the lines you'll be cutting on.

8. Print out your pattern and cut off most of the excess paper.

http://www.instructables.com/id/Flat-Zipper-Bag-and-Wallet/

File Downloads flatpurse.pdf (60 KB) [ NOTE: When saving, if you see .tmp as the

File Downloads

.tmp as the file ext, rename it to 'flatpurse.pdf'] flatwallet.pdf (55 KB) [NOTE: When saving, if

Step 2: Gather materials

For this project you'll need:

The pattern you just printed Two pieces of felt

A zipper

Matching thread

Contrasting button thread (if you're making a bag)

A sewing machine

Fabric scissors

A sharp exacto knife or rotary cutter (not strictly necessary, but a good idea)

*Note* If you're using the patterns attached to step 1 you'll need a 36" zipper for the large bag (which means it's actually 35" long) and a 14" zipper for the wallet. Each piece of felt should be about 36"x24" to comfortably fit both the bag and the wallet.

to comfortably fit both the bag and the wallet. Image Notes 1. The pattern 2. The

Image Notes

1. The pattern

2. The two colors of felt

3. Cutting tools

4. Thread

5. Zipper

6. Imagine there are some scissors here.

http://www.instructables.com/id/Flat-Zipper-Bag-and-Wallet/

Step 3: Cut out your pattern

Place your first layer of felt right-side-down on a flat surface. Then the other piece of felt right-side-up on top of it and the pattern on top. If the pattern is small (less than a square foot) you can just press down on it or use a couple pins to keep it in place while cutting. If the pattern is larger, you'll need to baste all three layers together with the contrasting button thread (you'll remove this later). However, make sure you leave enough room to insert the zipper (probably about 3/4") all the way around the edge. Cut out your pattern on the inner line and use your knife/rotary cutter to cut out the handles.

and use your knife/rotary cutter to cut out the handles. Image Notes 1. Make sure you

Image Notes

1. Make sure you cut along the inside line

Image Notes 1. Make sure you cut along the inside line Image Notes 1. Basting doesn't

Image Notes

1. Basting doesn't need to be pretty.

Step 4: Remove the pattern

doesn't need to be pretty. Step 4: Remove the pattern If your pattern is small, this

If your pattern is small, this is pretty simple. However, if you just sewed it onto your fabric you'll need to tare it off without taring out the stitches. This can take some time, but it's much faster than re-basting.

http://www.instructables.com/id/Flat-Zipper-Bag-and-Wallet/

Step 5: Sew on the zipper Image Notes 1. Check out my exciting mess! Place

Step 5: Sew on the zipper

Step 5: Sew on the zipper Image Notes 1. Check out my exciting mess! Place the

Image Notes 1. Check out my exciting mess!

Place the zipper between the two layers of felt. You don't need to pin because the perimeter of the felt should be exactly the same length as the zipper. Also, it won't really help. Make sure that the zipper is facing the outside of your bag, or, if you can find it, use a reversible zipper and be able to use both sides of your bag. If you've got sharp curves you may want to clip the zipper so it can make the turn more easily. Thread your machine and go to town.

the turn more easily. Thread your machine and go to town. Image Notes 1. This snip

Image Notes 1. This snip will help the zipper curve.

to town. Image Notes 1. This snip will help the zipper curve. http://www.instructables.com/id/Flat-Zipper-Bag-and-Wallet/

http://www.instructables.com/id/Flat-Zipper-Bag-and-Wallet/

to town. Image Notes 1. This snip will help the zipper curve. http://www.instructables.com/id/Flat-Zipper-Bag-and-Wallet/
to town. Image Notes 1. This snip will help the zipper curve. http://www.instructables.com/id/Flat-Zipper-Bag-and-Wallet/

Step 6: Finish up

If you've basted, now's the time to rip it out. You'll also want to hide your threads by hand sewing them back into the felt. If you don't there's a good chance they'll catch on your zipper. That's it. You've got a new bag or wallet or randomly shaped container.

Enjoy!

got a new bag or wallet or randomly shaped container. Enjoy! http://www.instructables.com/id/Flat-Zipper-Bag-and-Wallet/
got a new bag or wallet or randomly shaped container. Enjoy! http://www.instructables.com/id/Flat-Zipper-Bag-and-Wallet/
got a new bag or wallet or randomly shaped container. Enjoy! http://www.instructables.com/id/Flat-Zipper-Bag-and-Wallet/

http://www.instructables.com/id/Flat-Zipper-Bag-and-Wallet/

got a new bag or wallet or randomly shaped container. Enjoy! http://www.instructables.com/id/Flat-Zipper-Bag-and-Wallet/
got a new bag or wallet or randomly shaped container. Enjoy! http://www.instructables.com/id/Flat-Zipper-Bag-and-Wallet/
got a new bag or wallet or randomly shaped container. Enjoy! http://www.instructables.com/id/Flat-Zipper-Bag-and-Wallet/
Image Notes 1. Purse 2. wallet Step 7: Gallery I've made a few more bags

Image Notes

1. Purse

2. wallet

Step 7: Gallery

I've made a few more bags to use as presents. They're all made from more or less random curves that I adjusted till I got the shapes I wanted. I'm thinking about trying polygons next.

I wanted. I'm thinking about trying polygons next. Image Notes 1. well, maybe one of them

Image Notes

1. well, maybe one of them is for me

2. for my mother

3. for my cousin

http://www.instructables.com/id/Flat-Zipper-Bag-and-Wallet/

maybe one of them is for me 2. for my mother 3. for my cousin http://www.instructables.com/id/Flat-Zipper-Bag-and-Wallet/
http://www.instructables.com/id/Flat-Zipper-Bag-and-Wallet/
http://www.instructables.com/id/Flat-Zipper-Bag-and-Wallet/

http://www.instructables.com/id/Flat-Zipper-Bag-and-Wallet/

http://www.instructables.com/id/Flat-Zipper-Bag-and-Wallet/
http://www.instructables.com/id/Flat-Zipper-Bag-and-Wallet/
http://www.instructables.com/id/Flat-Zipper-Bag-and-Wallet/
http://www.instructables.com/id/Flat-Zipper-Bag-and-Wallet/

http://www.instructables.com/id/Flat-Zipper-Bag-and-Wallet/

http://www.instructables.com/id/Flat-Zipper-Bag-and-Wallet/
http://www.instructables.com/id/Flat-Zipper-Bag-and-Wallet/
Step 8: Gallery, Part II I've made some new bags since the holidays. Here they

Step 8: Gallery, Part II

I've made some new bags since the holidays. Here they are. I'm also included patterns for all the bags since people seem to be interested in trying to make them. I'll probably be adding more as I sew! And, if any of you would like, I'll add photos of bags you make as well.

you would like, I'll add photos of bags you make as well. http://www.instructables.com/id/Flat-Zipper-Bag-and-Wallet/
you would like, I'll add photos of bags you make as well. http://www.instructables.com/id/Flat-Zipper-Bag-and-Wallet/

http://www.instructables.com/id/Flat-Zipper-Bag-and-Wallet/

you would like, I'll add photos of bags you make as well. http://www.instructables.com/id/Flat-Zipper-Bag-and-Wallet/
http://www.instructables.com/id/Flat-Zipper-Bag-and-Wallet/
http://www.instructables.com/id/Flat-Zipper-Bag-and-Wallet/

http://www.instructables.com/id/Flat-Zipper-Bag-and-Wallet/

http://www.instructables.com/id/Flat-Zipper-Bag-and-Wallet/
http://www.instructables.com/id/Flat-Zipper-Bag-and-Wallet/
http://www.instructables.com/id/Flat-Zipper-Bag-and-Wallet/
http://www.instructables.com/id/Flat-Zipper-Bag-and-Wallet/

http://www.instructables.com/id/Flat-Zipper-Bag-and-Wallet/

http://www.instructables.com/id/Flat-Zipper-Bag-and-Wallet/
http://www.instructables.com/id/Flat-Zipper-Bag-and-Wallet/

File Downloads

File Downloads 1.pdf (46 KB) [ NOTE: When saving, if you see .tmp as the file
you see .tmp as the file ext, rename it to '1.pdf'] 2.pdf (68 KB) [ NOTE:
you see .tmp as the file ext, rename it to '2.pdf'] 3.pdf (45 KB) [ NOTE:
you see .tmp as the file ext, rename it to '3.pdf'] 456.pdf (76 KB) [ NOTE:
see .tmp as the file ext, rename it to '456.pdf'] 7.pdf (44 KB) [NOTE: When saving,

Comments

36 comments

g s e r r a n o 7 0 1 s a y s

gserrano701 says:

Sep 10, 2011. 11:46 AM REPLY

Great, thanks for sharing, I'll make mine soon

w a d a s h o p s a y s : Jul 5,

wadashop says:

Jul 5, 2010. 3:38 PM REPLY

Hi, I actually sell them on www.wadashop.com and I didnt know about this Josh. I got the idea from Peru. Mine has different colors and designs. You will love them and they are super cheap.

m o m e n t o m o r i s a y s

momento mori says:

Feb 18, 2010. 4:12 PM REPLY

you should consider selling these on etsy if you havent started already! :D

c y n d e r s a y s : Mar 28, 2008. 4:14

cynder says:

Mar 28, 2008. 4:14 PM REPLY

made some of these! They turned out great. For some, I used boiled woolen blankets, and for some I made my own felt. Now I have been asked to show how it's done to a fibre craft group. I tell them about Instructables, but some are computer shy.

I

r u p a m a g i c s a y s : Feb

rupamagic says:

Feb 15, 2008. 6:52 PM REPLY

Fabulous! Thanks! Now I need to find the time to make this tote! I'll post pics if it's anything better than a disaster. Wish me luck!

s m i t h n s a y s : Feb 15, 2008. 5:51

smithn says:

Feb 15, 2008. 5:51 PM REPLY

wow this is actually pretty useful. I could probably make a pretty cool messenger bag like this with scrap leather. thanks for the idea =D

r u p a m a g i c s a y s : Feb

rupamagic says:

Feb 13, 2008. 9:43 AM REPLY

I

really LOVED the "UM" idea when I saw it on Josh's site, and I actually stared at it for a while trying to figure out how I could make it myself. I would love to

have a LARGE over-the-shoulder tote version of this, but I don't have any drafting software or the understanding of geometry to pull it off. If anyone figures it out, please share the pattern with me! I'm very impressed with the original UM bags and your adaptations. Your instructable was well laid out and easy to follow also, well done!

was well laid out and easy to follow also, well done! j f t e s

jftesser says:

Feb 13, 2008. 4:10 PM REPLY

I'm actually working on an over the shoulder tote right now, so great timing! I'll probably be sewing it tonight and (assuming I get a nice result) I'll post a pdf of the pattern.

I get a nice result) I'll post a pdf of the pattern. j f t e

jftesser says:

Feb 15, 2008. 5:28 PM REPLY

Posted! (I'm not super happy with the bag though, so try this one at your own risk ;)

r u p a m a g i c s a y s : Yahooo!

rupamagic says:

Yahooo!

Feb 13, 2008. 6:15 PM REPLY

a n n g e l 3 6 9 s a y s : Feb

anngel369 says:

Feb 12, 2008. 11:17 PM REPLY

this is so cool! i can't wait to try it out! really great instructions thanks!

j o s h j a k u s s a y s : Feb

joshjakus says:

Feb 12, 2008. 10:44 PM REPLY

Ps., I'm not too stressed about this despite a rampant ripoff problem within the industry, but could everyone who makes a copy please just reference my work as jftesser has? thanks!

j o s h j a k u s s a y s : Feb

joshjakus says:

Feb 12, 2008. 10:40 PM REPLY

Yes, congratulations on the prize! Do I get a cut of the prize money as the original designer of the UM bags? :)

o s i b i s a s a y s : Feb 2, 2008.

osibisa says:

Feb 2, 2008. 8:51 AM REPLY

and yes--congratulations! nice work.

o s i b i s a s a y s : Feb 2, 2008.

osibisa says:

Feb 2, 2008. 8:48 AM REPLY

It does look like a mouse. What about ears? :-) I'm a great mouse-lover--had a number of the white ones as a child.

I can't really make out-- are these are two-way zippers? I'm sure it'll come clear when I can see the thing actually in front of me.

 

Hmm. I have a very long orange velvet thingamajig (for putting a cushion inside). It fits about 4 king-size pillows with space left over--and, here's the best part: the beautiful brass zipper! I brought it at Goodwill mainly for that zipper -knowing it would prove itself as precious- although I'd always thought to build a long narrowish bench to put it on.

hmmm. One thing I thought was interesting, following the trail of crumbs from Joshjakus to treehugger was someone's post about working in a recycled felt factory and becoming very sick--it was attributed to the fibres. She made the point that real wool felt is a renewable resource and stated she wouldn't have the recycled stuff near her, touching it everyday

anyway, I'm thinking these would be great in my thick velvet, maybe with interfacing.

w h i t e o a k a r t s a y s

whiteoakart says:

Jan 24, 2008. 2:06 PM REPLY

congrats on your first place prize!

2:06 PM REPLY congrats on your first place prize! j f t e s s e

jftesser says:

Thanks!

Jan 24, 2008. 8:20 PM REPLY

c a n i d a s a y s : Jan 21, 2008. 3:56

canida says:

Jan 21, 2008. 3:56 PM REPLY

These are fantastic, and your instructions are clear enough that I think I could even follow along! Not sure when I'll get around to it, but will definitely post pictures when I do!

w h i t e o a k a r t s a y s

whiteoakart says:

Dec 19, 2007. 10:43 AM REPLY

You could easily pull this project off for free. When we discard old, beat up coats that are too nasty to donate, I remove the zippers. I have a nice collection of zippers in a variety of lengths and colors. I also collect odds and ends of fabric from surplus stores and fabric stores, as well as old jackets and such. Because the geometry is open to interpretation, this is a great project for funny little odds and ends of material.

a great project for funny little odds and ends of material. c a n i d

canida says:

Jan 21, 2008. 3:42 PM REPLY

What a fantastic idea! Cannibalizing those high-quality zippers seems like such an obvious thing to do, in retrospect. Thanks for the suggestion.

thing to do, in retrospect. Thanks for the suggestion. r e d h e d i

redhedinsanity says:

Dec 21, 2007. 8:34 AM REPLY

This is an awesome idea, so of course I had to make one of my own :) I wanted a wallet that looked more like a cone than a tube, and it worked out. Thanks

for the fun instructable nice too :)

now

I have easy gift ideas! Also, I used regular fabric to make mine, and used fusible interfacing to give it support - though felt is

r e d h e d i n s a n i t y s
r e d h e d i n s a n i t y s

redhedinsanity says:

Dec 22, 2007. 8:30 AM REPLY

yeah, i wanted to see what it would look like with loose objects inside, and that's what i had lying around. :)

j f t e s s e r s a y s : Dec 22,

jftesser says:

Dec 22, 2007. 7:44 AM REPLY

Thanks for the pics! I really like the stripes. Are those puff stars in there?

I really like the stripes. Are those puff stars in there? w h i t e

whiteoakart says:

What does it look like when it is full of stuff? I like it. I am not a bag carrier, but I like a clever design.

Dec 17, 2007. 12:46 AM REPLY

but I like a clever design. Dec 17, 2007. 12:46 AM REPLY j f t e

jftesser says:

Dec 17, 2007. 5:41 AM REPLY

Surprisingly, almost exactly the same. It's not a huge bag (it fits my wallet, ipod, cellphone, coin purse, pens, etc.) but even with heavy stuff inside it keeps its shape really well. I've just made some larger ones, though, and I'm not sure how they'll hold up.

ones, though, and I'm not sure how they'll hold up. b r o d y s

brodysmom says:

Great instructable! I can't wait to make one.

Dec 7, 2007. 8:55 AM REPLY

I can't wait to make one. Dec 7, 2007. 8:55 AM REPLY j f t e

jftesser says:

If you do I'd love to see some pics!

Dec 7, 2007. 11:05 AM REPLY

o m n i b o t s a y s : Dec 7, 2007.

omnibot says:

Dec 7, 2007. 12:58 AM REPLY

Ooohh

I wants!! I also am a baglover.

P e r f e c t l y S q u a r e

PerfectlySquare says:

Dec 6, 2007. 9:45 AM REPLY

Nice project! I really dig the "one-off" nature of these, which will no doubt attract a lot of "Where did you get that?" One a side note, you put the actual instructable together better than 90% of the ones I see here. The instructions are clear and focused; and your pictures are clear, laid out with thought, and outstandingly labeled. If there were a contest for the best laid out Instructable, this would clearly be a finalist. Great job!

Instructable, this would clearly be a finalist. Great job! j f t e s s e

jftesser says:

Thanks a lot!

Dec 6, 2007. 5:21 PM REPLY

r s a y s : Thanks a lot! Dec 6, 2007. 5:21 PM REPLY t

trialex says:

Awesome!

I found these bags too, and also wanted one. I posted about them in the forum here.

Dec 6, 2007. 2:24 PM REPLY

Nice work on working out the shape. I played around in my CAD software for ages trying to get the shape. I didn't have the same results as you - I couldn't get the edges to match up by rotating a curve and alighning.

I liked the "Tote" version, and it took me ages to get the shape. It all fell into place when I found the non-round fillet technique.

http://www.instructables.com/id/Flat-Zipper-Bag-and-Wallet/

Nice work on the project, well documented.

Nice work on the project, well documented. W i l l i z s a y

Williz says:

Heh thats quite cool but I'd use different colours as those are rather drab :P

Dec 6, 2007. 2:40 AM REPLY

as those are rather drab :P Dec 6, 2007. 2:40 AM REPLY j f t e

jftesser says:

What can I say? I like drab ;)

Dec 6, 2007. 6:15 AM REPLY

p i n g e e e s a y s : Dec 6, 2007.

pingeee says:

Dec 6, 2007. 5:55 AM REPLY

I think this is cool

p o c k e t l a m a s a y s :

pocketlama says:

Dec 6, 2007. 12:04 AM REPLY

A++ I would make these in a second except I really need a bag with straps. Good for you for taking the concept and running with it!

G o r i l l a z M i k o s a y

GorillazMiko says:

Dec 5, 2007. 7:41 PM REPLY

it looks like a mouse! haha just a little.

http://www.instructables.com/id/Flat-Zipper-Bag-and-Wallet/