Japanese knot bag sewalong: design modification

By now you may have finished a knot bag and be ready for a slightly different version. I’ve played around with the pattern, and come up with this


The fabric is boiled, foiled wool, leftover from one of my reversible jackets, and therefore meeting my stringent stash busting requirements.


I have therefore made the bag reversible too!DSC05908

All I did was take the existing pattern and extend the sides out straight. I squared off the bottom and sewed it up in the same sequence as the original bag.


Because the fabric is reversible, I didn’t line the bag. I am not convinced that this was a good idea as the bag feels a little flimsy, but that might be in my head, as the fabric is reasonably robust.

I had started out to make the bag into a box shape at the bottom by squaring off the corners, but that idea got lost in the translation. However, I would love to see someone else do this. Looking at the photos, I may just retrofit box corners to this one.

I am currently playing around with one made from a pair of jeans, complete with the pockets. I have run out of time to post here, but if I get it finished before the end of November, I shall do a post for you.

Just in case you think this bag isn’t cool enough, here is another celebrity photo for you. This one is from Stella McCartney’s 2015 collection (thanks to Hélène for this one), which is a bit reminiscent of the one I’ve done, but longer and with a longer handle.


What design modifications can you think of?

Previous sewalong posts are:




24 thoughts on “Japanese knot bag sewalong: design modification

  1. I’ve just tested mine in Claremont this morning and I’m lengthening the handles on the next one as it was a little fiddly getting stuff in and out, it did however look good and went well with what I was wearing 🙂

    1. Thank you for putting this link up, Hélène, this would be an easy bag to replicate. Also the Grainline Studio bag, I think it’s just a matter of having two straight handles the same length and squaring off the pattern. I shall play!

      1. I’ve got a photo of this one, but it’s just a tester. I need to make one in a more lively fabric. I love your version above by the way! Where do I post the photo? I could put it on my Flicker photo stream, or do you have a group on Flicker?

      2. Thanks Trish. There is a FB group, which I’ve linked to in the first post. I haven’t set up a Flickr group, but if you put it on Flickr and send me the link, I can add you to my roundup?

      3. Yes, that’s fine. I want to make another better one too. I would join the Facebook group but belong to MAGAM, and don’t think I could deal with the pressure of two groups 🙂 Now it may take me a while to copy the link. Be back soon.

  2. You ask for variations I can think of:
    You designed one with a straight side. Add to that one a round or square or six sided sewn- in bottom with a stiff lining and you have three different variations
    Another option that I have in mind for my 3 and 6 year-old nieces is very small bags. It will be probably very hard to turn fabric and lining like we did in your bag, but it is possible to sew inside and outsd bag and do the edges with a bias trim or FOE elastic trim

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