Make a Fabric and Leather Messenger Bag

When and Where

29 Feb 2020 - 14 Mar 2020 (20 hours, 3 weeks)
Days and times
Saturday 09:00 - 16:30
Morley College London Waterloo Centre


Full fee
Concession fee
Senior fee

Quick Facts

Keren Brat
Course code

What you will learn

Ideal for beginners to the subject, learn the basic construction methods required to produce a finished messenger bag in a unisex design. Learn how to combine leather with fabric and gain skills that can be used to develop your own pieces. Working with a provided pattern, you will make a lined bag in soft leather and heavy solid coloured fabric with a zip closure and an across the body Webbing strap with a slider. No previous experience in bag making or leatherwork is required but sewing machine skills are essential.

By the end of the course you will be able to

  • use a commercial pattern to cut different types of materials
  • construct a messenger bag using soft leather and fabric
  • add an interior shell using appropriate materials including linings and interfacings
  • attach suitable fastenings and fittings such as zips, sliders and metal tuck catches
  • follow instructional handouts and diagrams

Class format and activities

Following a commercial pattern, you will practice a variety of seaming and finishing techniques that will enable you to produce simple leather accessories. Teaching is both as a whole class and on an individual, one-to-one basis with technical advice depending on your needs. After examining and discussing samples and examples, the tutor will demonstrate how you can use a domestic sewing machine for stitching these challenging material. The tutor will facilitate group discussions and work with students one-to-one and

In order to ensure that you make the best possible progress on your course, you will have regular feedback from your tutor, in a constructive and supportive environment.

Entry requirements

You do not need previous experience of using this material but basic sewing machine skills are essential. English speaking / reading plus basic numeracy is desirable.

What you need to know before you enrol

• This course is very intensive; punctuality and good attendance are necessary.
• Cutting materials is usually done standing at high tables. If this is difficult for you, please inform your tutor.
• The fashion studios are on the first floor of the Nancy Seear Building.
• There is wheelchair access via a stair-lift.
• Working with leather requires using specialist glue and knives. You will receive Health and Safety instructions for using these. If you have asthma or a breathing problem, please inform your tutor.
Please note: there is no eating or drinking allowed in the fashion studios – this includes any liquids at all.

What you will need for your class

• a basic sewing kit: sharp heavy fabric scissors, pins, tape measure
• notepad and 2/3 colour pens, 2H pencils, sharpener and eraser,
• masking tape, paper scissors
• you will be required to purchase a materials pack from your tutor, containing everything for the course, for no more than £35 per pack. This must be given to the tutor at the start of the course.
• sewing machine bobbins will be available from your tutor for £1, refundable at the end of the course
• paper and card are provided for use in class

What you can do next

The course provides an excellent introduction to using this challenging material or as a refresher or taster of new techniques. You may be interested in our accessories courses including Design and Make a Bag, Leather Accessories short Course,Make a Leather Purse/Wallet . Please consult the course guide.