Make a Hobo Bag (Sewing pattern & Tutorial)

Make Hobo bag

A hobo bag is a large slouchy bag with a curve between the two ends of the shoulder straps. Here is a tutorial to make a hobo bag in the fabric of your choice

Tutorial to sew a Hobo Bag

Step 1. Fabric pieces needed for the hobo bag.

Fabric pieces for the bag

Cut out 2, 15 inches by 20 inches fabric pieces for the main outer body of the bag. Cut out similar lining pieces. And 22 inch long and 3 inch wide fabric strips for making bag handles.
I interfaced the fabric pieces for the outer bag – even a slouchy bag needs some stiffness. Without interfacing all fabric bags can turn out to be a floppy mess.

Step 2. Handle and fastening.

handle and buttons and elastic piece

You can use a 1 inch webbing as the bag handles or make one with fabric in a matching color. Make handle with the fabric strips (22 inch long and 3 inches wide).The two finished handles should be 1 inch wide and 22 inches long. You can checkout this tutorial to make bag handles.

Step 3. Cut out the top part of the hobo bag

Pattern for the outer body of the hobo bag

The curved part of the bag should be cut out.

Step 4. Cut out the two lining pieces.

Cut the lining pieces

Cut out the lining pieces the same way as you did for the outer pieces.

Step 5. Sew the outer bag

sew side edges of the outer bag pieces

Keep the two outer pieces right sides to the inside and then sew the side edges together.

Step 6. Cut the Base oval shape

Cut out an oval piece as base

Cut the base fabric in the dimension – across 9.5″ and from top to bottom 7.5″.

Step 7. Pleat the bottom edge of the bag

pleat the bag bottom

The pleated edge should match the dimension of the oval. ie. when you sew them together they should the same.

Step 8. Join the oval piece to the pleated edge

From the outside, start sewing the oval to the bottom edge over the pleats.

Turn bag right side in

After you start sewing the oval base, you will have to turn the bag rightside in. It may get difficult to sew further. Now complete sewing the base.

The base finished

hobo bag outer part

The base of the bag is sewn to the bottom part of the bag

Step 9. Sew the lining bag

Lining of the hobo bag

Sew the side edges and the bottom edge of the lining pieces together. Leave 2 or 3 inches unstitched or pluck out the stitches with a seam ripper.

Step 10. Insert the lining bag inside the outer bag

insert the lining bag inside the outer bag

Turn the outer bag right side in. Lining bag right side out. Insert the lining bag inside the outerbag.Pin at the handle edges.

Keep elastic or button loop

You can add magnetic snaps to the lining bag or zipper as bag fastener but I am taking the easy way out with a button and loop. Keep a small piece of elastic loop pinned inside the layers of outer and lining bag. Pin or baste stitch in place.

Insert the handles

insert handles between

The bag handles are also inserted in between the outer and lining bag (Do tuck the handles to the inside – unlike in the picture above; I just wanted to show that the handles are there)

Step 11. Sew the lining and outer bag together

Sew the lining and the outer bags together at the top edge, joining the handles also, at the same time.

The bags sewn together at the top edge

Clip the seam allowance along the top edge every one inch or so, so that the bag will turn smoothly.

Step 12. Turn the bag right side out

hobo bag turned rightside out

Turn the outer bag right side out, through the hole in the lining bag. Turn everything out smoothly. Sew the hole closed – you either slip stitch by hand or just use the sewing machine to stitch the unstitched fabric edges together. Tuck the lining to the inside neatly.
At this point you can top stitch the top edge for a neat and crisp look and the lining will stay put to the inside too.

Step 13. Stitch button to the front of the bag

Hand stitch a corresponding button to the front of the bag.

The slouchy and roomy Hobo bag

Slouchy hobo bag with a button fastening

Now, me, off to the library – the only place I seem to go nowadays.

Related posts : Sewing tutorial for a tote bag; How to make a phone purse

Updated on September 28, 2022 by Sarina Tariq

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