It’s not a purse. It’s a man bag.

So, my friend’s husband was having a birthday, as people have been known to do from time to time. And I didn’t have any wrapping paper for the gifts we got him. Wrapping paper is highly overrated.

What to do? What to do? Well, why not make him a man bag to put the gifts in? I have a closet full of leather coats and skirts that have either been given to me or I found at thrift stores. They’re slated to become purses and phone carriers and various other wonders of accessory goodness. I decided that I could just include a man bag in that portfolio.

So, Sunday morning I woke up thinking about this whole idea. I’d only made wallets and dopp kits for men before this. How would it be viewed by this very manly husband of my friend? Well, I’ll tell you what he said when I brought it over to their house (we go to their house almost every week for Sunday dinner). “Oh, that’s a nice purse.” Uhm. Yah.

Anyway, to make this I used the right front pocket panel and one panel with a buttonhole – I didn’t want to deal with making a leather buttonhole, since I wanted to have this done by the time we left for their house. And I wasn’t going to miss church to work on it, which meant I only had a few hours before church and one hour afterward to work on it. This is just a pictorial illustration – had it been an actual tutorial, it would be followed by in-depth instructions for each step.

It actually took longer to figure out how to put something together than it took to make it. Of course, it would have been even faster had I not run into the usual, obligatory hitches in the gitalong. For one, I don’t have the presser foot I need for working with leather, so I had a little more trouble getting it to go correctly. And, there were a couple of thick areas that I had to walk the needle through, and the thread got a little wonky-doodle in those areas. Scratch that. Start again. I took that part out and tried again, slower and more methodically. That worked.

He said he liked it, but he would say that. The plus is that I had fun making it, and felt like I had at least accomplished something. The minus is that it did not come out like I envisioned it; the flap curled up too much on either side of the button strip, and I’m thinking I should have used a snap instead of a button. It was just a little hard to open. If you should want to try this, I’d suggest a snap or velcro. Another thing I think I’d change is to use bias binding along the edges instead of just sewing it up like I did.


5 thoughts on “It’s not a purse. It’s a man bag.

  1. Great job for repurposing leather with the buttonhole included! I’ve heard the man bag called a murse (man purse) My man said, “Don’t even think about it!” 🙂 So I’d have to make it for a give away gift too.


    • yeah, my hubby didn’t want a “murse” either – but he does love the dopp kit and the wallet I made him. I think he’d like one of these man bags, though; he likes to be organized, and he did like the lining and the leather. My friend’s husband uses it for his important papers. Made me feel good to hear that, after he called it a purse. 😆


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