The Matsuri Bag

Saturday, May 2, 2015

 It's time to introduce you to the second of my two new bag patterns, the Matsuri Bag!

If my spirit animal could be a bag, it would be the Matsuri Bag. I'm a very mercurial person by nature, and that extends to the my choice in bags. My favorite bags are ones that are adaptable and versatile. I carried a crossbody bag at Fall Quilt Market, which worked fine initially, but evolved into an uncomfortable boat anchor as I loaded it up with books, mini charm packs, and pamphlets. So when Quilt Con rolled around, I took a backpack instead, which was more comfortable, but became irritating when I had to constantly take it on and off to access the contents.

The Matsuri Bag converts from a crossbody bag to a backpack with the help of some simple hardware.
I designed the Matsuri Bag for those all-day adventures where your needs may change. Some simple hardware and an a detachable, adjustable strap lets you transform your crossbody bag into a backpack to suit your mood. The bag gets its name from Japanese festivals (the term is also used a lot in the US in conjunction with anime conventions) where you can play games, eat street food, and buy souvenirs.

In addition to it's cool convertible feature, the Matsuri Bag features two gathered side pockets which are perfect for a water bottle, car keys, or your phone.

The two versions Matsuri Bags above were made by yours truly. The bag on the right was made with my scraps left over from my Quilt Market samples for Lizzy House's new collection, Natural History. I'm a scrappy person at heart, and Lizzy's new line begs to be carried everywhere. The bag on the left uses a variety of Carolyn Friedlander prints I also had left over from various projects.

I was very lucky to have several gracious, generous pattern testers who all blew me away with their lovely bags!

First up is Michelle (@chellesquilts) who made her Denise Schmidt print pop with diamond quilting! She even added an ingenious little key fob to the side pocket! Seriously clever.

Next up, Jana (@megmormel) with a lovely Priory Square Matsuri bag, modeled by her daughter! Those big blooms are a perfect focal point for the main panel.

 Chen (@mushyhed), who you may know as Alison Glass's hype girl, made her bag with some of Alison's new Ex Libris and Andover's black chambray. Result: drool-worthy. If you're going to Quilt Market in Minneapolis, keep your eyes peeled for this one in Alison's booth!

Nicole (@nf_merritts) put her Cotton + Steel Mesa canvas to work for her bag. I love the bright contrasting pockets! Her adorable son is also an apparent fan of the finished project. :)

Another awesome mama, Erica (@skynme2), made her Matsuri bag for her petite teenage daughter who needed a backpack that wasn't so traditionally HUGE. I'm only 5' tall myself, so I feel you there, girl. Plus, she used one of my favorite prints by Sarah Watts!

Dyan's (@sew_joyful) Matsuri Bag had me stomping my feet from excitement. I've been head over heels for Rashida Coleman-Hale's rice print canvas since I first saw it. I love the density of the rice on the zipper gusset at watching it tumble down the front panel.

Last, but certainly not least is Tara (@taraceleste) with her cat print Matsuri Bag. This bag (and her amazing photos) totally slay me. As her pictures show, this pattern makes a great "mom bag" for carrying diapers, snacks, drinks, and any other kid essentials. It also doesn't hurt that it's covered in cute kitty faces!

I hope you enjoyed seeing the many faces of the Matsuri Bag! If you'd like to make one for yourself, click the link below to go directly to the product page on my Craftsy shop.

Click Here to Purchase the Matsuri Bag pattern!


  1. That oak Mulberry alexa bag is exactly the bag I have been searching for. Perfect color, perfect size. Now if I used it every day, that would justify the cost, right? Leather Bag Brands

  2. Hi - I really want to buy this pattern - but for some reason, craftsy won't let me. Can I buy it directly from you? enitdk @ gmail . com

    1. What do you mean by Craftsy won't let you? What is the issue you are experiencing?