The VanBag /

Dos problemos:
  • Resorting to carrying a laundry basket to church
  • Too much scrap fabric begging to be used
The obvious solution? A jumbo-sized carryall for - you guessed it - my life. My 'life' (also nicknamed my "junk") can consist of just a paltry bit of Spanish homework and my collection of highlighters, but generally my life/junk is piano books...more piano books...just books...my bible...mooore piano books...and if I'm teaching children's church it will also include our entire schoolroom stuffed in a bag. With a laptop. Even a laundry basket couldn't carry that - much less a jumbo-sized whiteboard!

1. Camper Vans / 2. These pockets / 3. This applique / 4. This humungo bag / 5. This Van Bag (original inspiration) / 6. Messenger Bag Pattern


But if you're going to make a huge bag to hold half your life - it would have to be pretty. And not just pretty...inspiring - happy. Because a happy bag full with maybe unhappy stuff (like anatomy terms) would be so much more happier if it had a happy design...like camper vans! (I'm not being ridiculous, this literally is my train of thought.)

The idea first become an idea in process when I found this Van Bag on pinterest. It was...ummm...niceish...but I was convinced that something with a little more "ummmph" could be stitched together.  

What I used:
  • Cream canvas for the majority of the bag
  • Green, yellow and pink scraps for the "camper van" and pockets (plus other random scraps)
  • This messenger bag pattern (although there's plenty of similar patterns on pinterest like this one)

The Construction:
The only special addition to the pattern was that I machine appliqued the camper van straight on (leaving about 1/4" on the edges for unraveling space). I pretty much just cut out everything as I went along, and all the shapes were geometrical and easy-peasy
The end result a pile of scraps and one day later:

The VanBag! 

I'm really happy about my bag. :)
My new handy-dandy bag to carry my life! (almost as precious to me as Samgar-Nebo) Truth be told, once all my junk is piled in, the straps hurt my shoulder after a while - and there still isn't enough room for my laptop - but it works! Everything stays in without the assistance of irksome zippers, buttons, snaps, et cetera. The best part about it is that it's cute, vintage-ish, and big enough to meet all my random needs.


  1. :) The bag is super cute! You did a great job on it!

    (I loved the pictures, too!)

  2. @ Kara - while sewing it up, I was thinking, "wow - I'm surprised this is turning out so well!" Of course, remembering all of my - *coughs* - other creations...the best of which was our dress sewing day. ;) (remember that nightmare?)

  3. @Bethany! Oh my word! Our "sewing day" WAS a nightmare...but so much fun!
    --Actually, if you will remember, you were much more composed than we other girls. Haha. --The number of times that "Betthhhannyyyy!" or "Bethany! What do I do now?" (sentences which were always moaned in anguish over a horrible blunder) were innumerable. :)

    I do feel sorry for Caroline - having to wear the *cough* dress-turned-pinafore I created. :D


  4. Sew cute! (See what I did there?)

    I love VW's, so I'm particularly fond of your vanbag.


© Everyday Memoirs
Maira Gall