I made this bag last year when I could download the pattern for this Nairobi bag from the Hotpatterns newsletter in October 2006,
I used a faux printed green leather to make this bag with some modifications.
The size of the bag I made is 15½ x 11 x 2 inch (39 x 28 x 5 cm)
The pattern came with sewing instructions but I did not follow them because I made some alterations on the pattern so I used the common sense attitude.
I used green faux printed leather, a woven interfacing to support the faux leather, 2 metal teeth zippers, rigilene boning, lining which I interfaced with a fusible stretch interfacing, double sided fusible craft tape, 2 silver metal D-rings with screws, a bag stop and a key ring all from my stash.
I made some minor design changes. First I like my bags with a zipper closure so I redraw the opening for the bag in a more fluent shape so I could attach a zipper to close the bag, see the red lines for the new shape opening.
I also did cut a longer shoulder strap.
To attach the bottom side part I used 3/8 inch (1 cm) seam-allowance instead of the 5/8 inch (1,5cm). This will result in a bit wider/deeper bottom/side part as well as the bag itself.
I wanted to keep the shape of the bag and prevent my bag to collapse , so I used rigilene boning .
I glued the boning all away around the bag between the seam allowances of the bottom/side part start and finish about 5/8 inch ( 1,5cm) from the opening .
Used a double sided fusible tape and fused this tape ( using a Teflon sheet to protect the faux leather) next to the bottom seams, glued the rigilene boning to the tape and top-stitched the seam allowance from the right side . The first stitching line is close to the seam and the next stitching line a bit farther away.
The zipper closure is made of 2 rectangle pieces of fabric and lining the same wide as the upper side opening.
For the closure of the bag I sewed the lining (facing) at the zipper tape next to the teeth, fold the lining away and sewed the zipper at the fabric, pinned the lining bag at the bag opening and sewed the closure/opening part at the bag opening, pivoting at the corners on which I already basted the shoulder strap loops.
Double sided fusible tape is also fused at the seam allowances of both the bag upper part and the part where the zipper was stitched, top-stitched those seams from the outside, fused the tape also at the zipper tape next to the lining and folding the lining over it and hand stitched the facing lining at the bag lining part. This way the top-stitching is only visible from the outside and invisible from the lining part.
The fabric loops for the D-rings are made to measure.
The faux leather fabric is interlined with a woven fusible interfacing , the lining with a stretch fusible interfacing and I did the zipper pocket my way, also placed the pocket lower than the pattern marks. The pattern for the cell phone pocket was too narrow for my cell phone so I adjusted that and skipped the other small pocket. Sewed the cell phone pocket at one side of the bottom side part and added a key ring to the other side which in this picture is not visible.
For both the pockets I used the lining fabric double to add some strength .
For the shoulder strap I did not want to add bulk by using seam allowances on the long sides so I did some testing to get the least bulk at the seams.
I sewed the strap wrong sites together in half with a loose tension large zigzag stitch but only ½ of the zigzag stitch catches the fabric, pulled those two edges from each other and the result was a non bulk shoulder strap.
I wove a piece of cotton twill tape through the shoulder strap with the help of a safety pin and top-stitched the strap along both edges.
The finishing touch was attaching a bag-stop,
Which I glue on every shoulder strap of my bags rtw or self made,to prevent sliding from my shoulder.