Tutorial: Hip Mama Diaper Bag

This project was frankly inspired by Queen Bee Creations’ diaper bag line. I love the idea of a functional diaper bag that doesn’t look like a diaper bag – and that can also, of course, be used as a regular messenger-style bag if you want.

The bag has a water-resistant vinyl lining to help make cleaning easy – but you can substitute a fabric lining if you want.

This bag’s finished dimensions are: 14″ long, 12″ high, 5″ wide, with a 36″ long strap. You can customize the bag by coming up with your own measurements – just remember to add 1″ for seam allowances.


1 1/4 yards cotton (44/45″ wide) for the exterior
1 yard water-resistant vinyl (44/45″ wide) for the lining
1 1/2 yards heavy-weight interfacing (unless you are using heavy-weight fabric for the exterior; if so, skip the interfacing)
coordinating thread
12″ coordinating zipper
2 metallic snaps
1/2 yard Velcro
5/8 yard 1/4″ elastic


1. Cut out the pieces.

A) Strap: 37″ x 5″. Cut 1 of fabric and 1 of interfacing (I recommend interfacing the strap or adding another layer even if using heavyweight fabric).
B) Front/back/flap piece: 15″ x 13″. Cut 4 of lining, cut 2 of fabric, and cut 2 of interfacing.
C) Side gusset: 6″ x 13″. Cut 2 of fabric, 2 of lining, and 2 of interfacing.
D) Bottom gusset: 6″ x 15″. Cut 1 of fabric, 1 of lining, and 1 of interfacing.
E) Back zippered pocket piece #1: 15″ x 3″. Cut 1 of fabric.
F) Back zippered pocket piece #2: 15″ x 11″. Cut 1 of fabric.
G) Front exterior pocket: 15″ x 9″. Cut 2 from fabric.
H) Side exterior pockets: 6″ x 9″. Cut 4 from fabric.
I) Interior pockets: 17″ x 9″. Cut 2 from lining.

I recommend labeling your pieces with masking tape and marking them with letters corresponding to the list above. This will help you keep track of the pieces.

Also: if you are using a uni-directional fabric (with motifs that all point the same way, as in the fabric I’ve used) take care when laying and cutting your fabric.

2. Apply interfacing (if using).

Fuse or sew interfacing to strap (A), 2 front/back/flap pieces (B), 2 side gusset pieces (C) and 1 bottom gusset piece (D). Attach interfacing to exterior fabric, not lining.

3. Make strap.

Press under 1/2″ on each long side of strap piece (A). Then press under 1/2″ on each short side. Fold strap in half lengthwise, wrong sides together, matching up all pressed edges. Press flat. Keeping all pressed edges even, topstitch a 1/4″ seam on all 4 sides of the strap. Set aside.

4. Make flap.

a) You will need 1 fabric flap piece (B) and 1 lining flap piece (B). On the lining piece, attach smaller halves of metallic snaps to each corner on one long edge. Snaps should be placed so that they are 1″ in from each side of piece.

b) Pin lining piece to fabric piece, right sides together. Sew a 1/2″ seam around three sides, leaving one long edge (the side without the snaps) open. Turn right side out, using turning tool to push out corners. Topstitch a 1/4″ seam around three finished edges. Set aside.

5. Make exterior pockets.

a) Back zippered pocket: Pin piece E to piece F along long edge, right sides together. Using a 1/2″ seam allowance, stitch a 1.5″ long seam at each end. Stitch the remainder of the seam (12″ in the middle) with a long basting stitch. This will be where you insert the zipper. Press seam open. Pin zipper to middle basted section, placing top of zipper and zipper stop close to the ends of the basted section.

Using a zipper foot, attach the zipper. Remove basting thread. Pin wrong side of zippered pocket piece to right side of a back lining piece (B). Topstitch a 1/4″ seam around all four edges. The lining piece will serve as the pocket’s interior.

b) Side pockets: Pin two side exterior pockets (H) together along shorter edge, right sides together. Stitch a 1/2″ seam; trim. Turn, press, and topstitch a 1/4″ seam along edge. Cut a 2″ piece of Velcro. Stitch the fuzzy half to the interior of the pocket, 1/4″ down from the top edge.

Place the pocket piece against one of the interfaced side gusset pieces (C), matching bottom and side edges. Mark placement for other half of Velcro on piece C, then stitch in place. Place pocket piece against gusset piece, with Velcro lined up, and stitch a 1/4″ seam around three edges. Repeat for other side pocket.

c) Front pockets: Pin the two front pocket pieces (G) together along long edge, right sides together. Stitch a 1/2″ seam; trim. Turn, press, and topstitch 1/4″ around all four edges. Attach other halves of metallic snaps to right side of pocket, through both layers. Measure up 5″ from bottom and in 1″ from each side to place snaps. Fold pocket in half width-wise and press, creating a crease down the center. Place the pocket piece against the remaining front fabric piece (B), matching bottom and side edges; pin in place. Topstitch along center crease, to create two front pocket halves. Cut two pieces of Velcro, each 4″ long. Stitch two fuzzy halves to the interior of the pocket, 1/4″ down from top edge, and centering each piece on each side of the center crease. Mark placement for other halves of Velcro on piece B, then stitch in place. Line up Velcro halves and topstitch 1/4″ seam around edges.

6. Assemble bag exterior.

a) Pin interfaced bottom gusset piece (D) to one side gusset piece (C) along short edges, encompassing bottom of side pocket, right sides together. Stitch a 1/2″ seam, beginning and ending 1/2″ from ends. Press open. Repeat for other side gusset piece.

b) Pin back zippered pocket piece to gussets along sides and bottom, through all thicknesses, right sides together, having zipper near the top. Stitch a 1/2″ seam, pinning corners like this:

Repeat for front pocket piece. Turn right side out. You should now have a bag exterior that can stand up on its own. Set exterior aside.

7. Make interior pockets.

a) Turn under 5/8″ on top edge of one interior pocket piece (I) and stitch in place using a 1/2″ seam allowance, forming a casing. Cut a piece of elastic 10″ long, insert it into the casing, and secure at both ends. Repeat for other interior pocket piece (I).

b) Pin wrong side of pocket piece against right side of one lining piece (B), matching bottom and side edges, easing in fullness at bottom by creating pleats or gathers. (It’s pretty much impossible to gather vinyl, so I used pleats across the bottom. If you’re using regular fabric for the lining, do a gathering stitch across the bottom and pull up the threads to fit). Stitch a 1/4″ seam around each side. Repeat for other pocket piece.

c) To create two interior pockets on one piece, fold the whole piece in half width-wise and mark the center line. Topstitch down that center line through all thicknesses.

d) To create three interior pockets on the other piece, measure in 5″ from each side and mark lines. Topstitch down those lines through all thicknesses.

8. Make bag interior.

Follow step 6 to attach side and bottom gussets and assemble the interior of your bag, with one exception: leave a long opening on one of the bottom seams for turning the bag. Do not turn right side out.

9. Finishing the bag.

a) Pin unfinished edge of flap to top edge of back zippered exterior piece, right sides together (lining side facing out). Stitch 1/4″ seam to attach.

b) Slip exterior of bag into lining, right sides together. Pin top edges together through all thicknesses. Stitch a 1/2″ seam. Trim seam.

c) Turn bag right side out by pulling exterior through the opening in lining. Sew up opening in lining. Push lining down into bag. Topstitch 1/4″ seam around top opening edges of bag.

d) Lap each end of strap 1.5″ over sides of bag. Topstitch strap ends to bag in an X pattern to secure.

You’re now ready to rock your new bag!

278 thoughts on “Tutorial: Hip Mama Diaper Bag

  1. Pingback: Hip Mama Diaper Bag « A Mingled Yarn

    • I made this as a diaper bag for my daughter. I lined it in vinyl. It truned our great!! I will let you know how she likes using it when the baby arrives. THe tutorial was very helpful. Thanks.

    • wow this is so pretty and for the next 8 months i will be working on making a bag like this for my coming baby!!!
      thanks for taking the time… just what i was looking for!!

    • Thank you thank you thank you! I have never made a project like this before. It looked so daunting. But your tutorial was great and I was able to finish it in one day! The hardest part was working with the vinyl, but I couldn’t be happier with it. I can’t wait for everyone to ask where I bought it. ; )

    • I just made this bag for my cousin and have showed it to my friends and family and they have asked where I bought it at! =) Thanks for the tutorial, super easy to follow. FYI: I am a beginner sewer, so if I can do it, anyone can!! Thank You!

    • This pattern and tutorial is excellent! I just made this diaper bag for myself as I am expecting a baby in 12 weeks. I couldn’t find a diaper bag that I liked in stores (that didn’t cost upwards of 100 dollars, or was really “babyish”). I am a very beginner at sewing and the task seemed very daunting to me, but I gave it a try and I am amazed by my results!! My sister still doesn’t believe me that I made my bag myself!! How great to be able to pick the fabrics and colours exactly as I want them. Thank you so much!!!! A+++!

    • I am totally lost on step 6… I can’t figure out how I am supposed to layer the fabrics…

      Where does the bottom of the side pocket get layered in? Do the right sides of the bottom gusset and side pocket go together? which piece does the right side of the side gusset (C) face? Also, is the side gusset (C) supposed to be of the liner fabric?

      Please help!


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  3. This is excellent! I don’t carry many diapers, but I’ve been looking for a nice messenger bag pattern. Thanks so much for posting it.

  4. I love this Baag. I hope to start this week. I will use it to tote my”stuff” back and forth to work. Phyllis

  5. I just made this bag for my daughter, who’s expecting . I think she is going to love it . It is a very nice bag and the instructions were very good .

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  9. Lovely bag. I gona make it for my knittings. Because we are travelling lot and a handy bag is nesserary. Thanks for your good informantion.
    AND the titanic “pullover” is marvelous too, I love it.

  10. Just wanted to say thanks so much for doing the tutorial. I made the diaper bag this past weekend for a friend. It came out beautifully (it was so nice, I had a hard time parting with it). I can’t tell you how impressed everyone at the shower was. I was impressed myself because it’s pretty much the nicest thing I’ve ever made. I’ve made the Amy Butler diaper bag a couple of times before, but this one looks nicer, has more features and is more functional. This bag was my first attempt at magnetic snaps and zippered pockets and both went really well. So thanks again. I really appreciate your effort and generosity in sharing the tutorial.

  11. Wow, thanks so much for this tutorial! I’ve had it bookmarked for ages, but finally worked up the courage to actually try it, and my bag came out great! Well, except I totally botched the zipper installation, but we won’t talk about that. It was much easier than I thought it would be, and now I can’t wait to make another one!

  12. Thanks for the tutorial! I bookmarked it a couple months ago, and I finally got around to making my bag this weekend. I love how it turned out! I’m planning on making at least one more for a Christmas present. Thanks again!

  13. What a great tutorial…I’ve had it bookmarked & now am biting the bullet to make a tester for me, and then one for my younger sis… I had purchased a pattern (ok patterns!) but this is so much cuter!

  14. I just made this bag! So fun and fairly easy for a new sewer. I didn’t use the interfacing, so mine is really floppy, but I like the look. The next one I will definitely try the interfacing. Thanks so much for the pattern! I LOVE all the pockets. You are very talented, and I have you bookmarked. Thanks again!

  15. what a nice bag and great tute to boot. think i could make one for myself or do i have to go and have a baby first? at 47, i’m a little long in the tooth for that but would love the bag just the same. whadda ya think?

    thank you so much for sharing the tute and for having such a super duper website!

  16. Just had to comment on the perfect matching of the designs on the outside of the bag.It was excellent. I like your choice of fabric but will probably use something a little easier to match. thanks for the inspiration!

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  18. I wish this had been available a few years ago! Now I’ll just have to settle for making them for friends, since my baby-making days are over. Really lovely bag and fabulous clear instructions.

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  22. My baby is on the way in February, and this tutorial is just what I have been looking for in a diaper bag! I went out and bought some fabric today, and am not-so-patiently waiting for it to finish prewashing so I can get started…

    Thank you so much for your well-written tutorial!

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  33. I just want to say that I finished my bag, and I’m so pleased with it. Thank you for writing such clear instructions. I did something out of character for me, and I read every step and followed it to the T. This is probably the most well done sewing project I’ve ever completed.

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  35. Thanks for your wonderful blog! I am starting to gather the supplies I need to make this bag. As a soon to be lit loving momma I can’t help but notice (and appreciate) that there is room in this bag for a book.

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  37. oops, I posted a comment about this bag on the wrong post I think! thank-you so much for posting this tut and sharing with us! I just made one a hip mama diaper bag and posted about it blogged here if you’d like to take a look!

  38. Just finished my bag, and I love it! Thank you so much for posting this excellent tutorial. I’ve never made anything like this before, and I was able to make my way through it surprisingly easily. Thank you, thank you, thank you! I’ll have the best diaper bag in town!

  39. This was such a well-explained tutorial. Thanks so much for posting it for free. I made the bag for my husband – not as a nappy bag but as a messenger bag, but neither of us were totally happy with how it turned out. We are perfectionists, but if I did it again I’d do a few things differently.

    Firstly, I think you really have to use something thick and sturdy like vinyl for the lining as it holds the shape of the bag. I used material (and very thick interfacing) and it just seems to flop around. Also, my husband and I think that the top edge of the back of the bag (where the flap starts from) needs to have a strip of something fairly sturdy and strong to hold the shape across there. Although maybe this wouldn’t be needed if you used vinyl. Another problem that might have been overcome with vinyl was the elasticised pockets on the inside. After sewing them in, the elastic just pulled in the sides of the bag and then the pocket lay loosely open on the inside. Very frustrating! And finally, we found that when the bag wasn’t full the velcro didn’t line up on the front. The Crumpler messenger bags that are super popular in Australia have their velcro running vertically so that you have a choice of where to fasten it. This is a really good idea and something I’d do next time.

    Ok, I think they’re all our suggested modifications for next time! Hope it helps those of you who are just starting out on this great project.

  40. Hi-I love this tutorial. I’m not a fan of the flap because I don’t like opening and closing it every time I need something. I there a way I can leave out the flap and if so, at what step? Is there a closure like a snap that could close it at the top if there wouldn’t be the flap? Thanks! Jill

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  45. Thanks for this great tutorial! I made a few modifications to the basic pattern: added elastic to one of the side gusset pockets and added a key holder inside. I used cotton for the lining rather than vinyl, so I used a super heavy-duty interfacing on the outer layer for stability. It makes for a sturdy bag, but was a real pain to work with. If I make another one, I’d probably go with a heavier outer fabric and a bit lighter interfacing. Still, I love it and can’t wait until my baby arrives so I can use it!

  46. Great tutorial! I made a few little modifications — made one of the side gusset pockets elasticized, added a key holder inside, used cotton lining instead of vinyl. Added a couple extra inches of elastic to the inside pockets. I used a super heavy-duty interfacing — great stability, but a pain to sew with!

  47. I just finished my bag and I LOVE IT! Thanks SO much for a great tutorial…yes, I had to read each step a million of times before I understood because I’m more than a beginner sewer but this project was VERY do-able! My only suggestion to any other NEW sewing friends is not to get iron-on interfacing!! I couldn’t figure out why my machine wouldn’t work then my mom told me! Funny moment I’ll always remember–but you can’t sew after putting on iron-on interfacing! So, I ended up pulling a lot of the interfacing back or covering it with scraps of material so I could sew! Great bag! Thanks again!

  48. Pingback: 45 Awesome Free Bag Making Tutorials | frugalandthriving.com.au

  49. Thanks for sharing an awesome pattern, and for free as well. I liked this bag better than any of the “Pay” patterns I found. I used cotton for both the liner and the bag. I used a heavy iron on interfacing. The only change that I would make in the future would be to also apply the interfacing to the liner piece of the zipper pocket. This would keep the back from being quite so floppy with just material. I had no problems with velcro gapping. the elastic pockets did pull the liner in somewhat, but the pockets did not sag or droop and this could probably be fixed if it bothered someone by either using interfacing on the front and back liner pieces, or tacking the sides to the outside of the bag. All I can say is I am ticked to death with the way mine turned out and plan to share my finished bag and the link to your tut on my blog!

  50. Thank you for this amazingly detailed pattern. This was my first time working with elastic, velcro, or zippers and the bag came out perfectly. I made it for my friends who are about to have a baby and made it more masculine so that it fit daddy’s style. I just posted it on my blog. I’ll definitely be making more!

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  55. Thanks for the tutorial. Have just finished my bag for a friend. Looks good, Ikea fabric- sturdy and cheap. Plainish outside- white/grey/ black and small bit of orange and a very cool orange inner. Hope that she llkes it.

    I added circular eyelets for the handles to give a bit more mobility. Hope they are sturdy enough.


  56. Thank you for this great Tutorial! It was a life saver! I had a friend come to me and say “Hey you made a quilt, so could you whip up a Diaper Bag…oh and by the way I need it by Dec 22 (this was on Nov. 30).” So in a panic and never being one to back down from a challenge I goggled Diaper Bag tutorial. I fortunately found this one and thought, “I can Do THIS!” I did make a few changes to the original. The request to make a bag came with a few criteria. She wanted her little guys name on it and wanted the pockets on the sides to be big enough to hold a Geber sippy cup and she wanted and adjustable strap. Here’s what it looks like with the changes–http://www.flickr.com/photos/45582087@N02/4206734334/
    Oh and for those that don’t know (like me before this project) magnetic snaps come with a strength rating. Its something to pay attention to because a rating of 8 will not work on this bag! :0
    Thanks again

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  58. Thank you for the wonderful tute! It has been my “me time” for the past little while, and with 3 boys (4 yrs, 2 yrs, and 4 weeks) I needed it! This is going to be perfect for me with 2 in diapers still.

  59. Can someone please help me out! I’m a total noob at sewing and totally lost on the inside pockets! I think I understand the elastic but when I went to topstitch to the larger liner peice I realized that the pocket peices are 17″ and the liner peice is 15″. Am I missing something? Am I supposed to make a tuck somewhere? I am in the middle of making this for a friend PLEASE HELP!

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  63. LOOOOOVE this diaper bag. I’ve made 2 for expectant friends. I know they will Love it too. Step by step instructions are right on and easy to read. Thank you for sharing your talents with the rest of us.

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  71. I trawled almost the whole entire interwebs and this is the best tutorial I found. It was really easy, except the corners which caused a lot of swearing :)

    I’ve made one for a friend who is due in July and will be making one for my sister-in-law as well.

    I have renamed it the nappy bag of swirliness as we don’t call them diapers here and the fabric I picked is a bit swirly.

    I’ve posted a picture of the finished result on my blog if you are interested in having a look.


    Thanks again for the great tutorial

  72. Thank you!!!! A friend of mine made one a few months ago, I bookmarked it… and finally cut it out and finished it this weekend! I LOVE it!! We’re waiting to adopt our son/daughter and I can’t wait to shove it full of newborn diapers and such… Thank you… pics will be up soon on our blog.


  73. Omg! I wanted a cute diaperbag bt ct find what I want w/o spending a buttload so I decided to look into making one. My sister found your webiste and I used your pattern with a few small adjustments it turned out EXACTLY! How I wanted it to thankyou so much for taking the time to poste this tutorial.

  74. I enjoyed making the bag. I use it for all my patchwork things, not baby stuff as I am now a Grandma, and it works brilliant. It holds quite a lot.

  75. Pingback: crafting for baby – a few non-essential items | frugalandthriving.com.au

  76. Wow! Fabulous!! My first time attempting ANYTHING of this sort (new sewer here!) The bag turned out really really well – thank you for the inspiration and great step by step instructions! Cannot wait to make many more!

  77. Pingback: DIY Baby Projects I Hope to Try « Nat's Distractions

  78. I am making this bag for myself (having a baby girl in June). I am trying to figure out what size to cut the flap. Where the sizes and quantities are listed it sounds like there should be 3 cuts of fabric and 3 cuts of lining, right?? I have the rest together except the flap. Please let me know.

    P.S. love the bag so far, I am going to embroider my daughters name on it.

    • Hi Sara –

      Thanks for your email. I’m sorry it’s taken me a while to reply. Yes, you should cut 3 exterior panels for the front, back, and top of the flap, and then 3 lining panels for the interior lining and the flap lining. I hope that helps!

      best, Elizabeth

  79. Pingback: Stuff I want to try (by category) « Lindsay Brunson's Blog

  80. I was looking for a pattern that was simular to my PPB bag that I adore for a friend who is due next month. This is perfect and I will only have to add the extra front flap and zippers for the changing station that is so wonderful about those bags. I am so excited! I will be using contrasting color/patterns of outdoor waterproof table cloths. The closest thing to the glazed material that mine is made of. It will be wonderful. Great tutorial and just what I needed. Thanks

  81. Pingback: Finished: Messenger-style Diaper Bag « Nat's Distractions

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  83. Good Day,

    I just wanted to let you know that I have linked to this lovely tutorial in my blog Made by Lolly and hope to make one some time soon.

  84. I absolutely love this tutorial!!

    I am having a ceasarean tommorow morning to welcome my 4th baby and whipped up one of these today (took just 4 hours) to take my babys clothes into the hospital. The tut was so easy to follow and can’t believe that you are so generous to offer it for free! I would have happily payed for the pleasure of using your amazing pattern! Thank You so much for being so giving!

    I blogged about my new baby bag on my blog, hope you have time to take a look and maybe leave a comment to let me know what you think.
    Hugs Paula xxx

  85. What kind of material did you use? I made this bag with a clear vinyl on top of a solid color (for the inside) because I didnt know what else to use. That made the bag VERY difficult to turn! It came out nice but I was wondering if there was something you might recommend to a beginner :)


  86. Thanks for this! I just used it to make a diaper bag for our new baby due next month. It turned out great, though I didn’t put any vinyl in so it wasn’t as stiff as yours. I am very happy with it and the instructions were wonderful and very clear.
    Thank you!

  87. Just finished making this bag for my daughter coming in November! At first I was really nervous as i am a beginner sewer but i found this tutorial SO easy to follow and I couldnt be happier with the result!

    GREAT tutorial thanks so much for posting! … now I want to make another one! he he

  88. im a mum of two lil girls and trying to find a big stylish nappy bag (esp one tht would fit round my pram handles) is near impossible. the thought of making one sounded scary (only ever made a simple bag before) but now thankyou to your tutorial i feel much more confident and looking forward to making it.
    thankyou so much xx

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  90. I’ve just made this over the last couple of days and I absolutely LOVE it. Thank you so much for sharing the tutorial, this is a great project for Mums-to-be! You’ve been extremely generous.

    I have 2 tips:

    1) If you’re using vinyl (which really gives the bag a good shape without being too bulky), at the point where you leave the gap to turn the bag out, sew the ends very LOOSELY, don’t backstitch on the machine otherwise the vinyl could easily rip when you’re pulling the material through.

    2) Instead of using ordinary interfacing, try using a heavy duty interface like buckram for the base only. Cut it 3/4″ smaller on all edges so that you don’t have to sew into it while attaching the sides of the bag to the bottom. Makes it really sturdy and helps it hold its shape really well.

    I also added a loop on each side for a keychain and dummy. These get sewn in at the point where the lining is being sewn together to form the inner bag (part 8 in the instructions).

  91. I bookmarked this tutorial a long time ago and I think now I will finally try and make it. I found some canvas fabric that I like but it’s 54″ wide. Can I get away with buying less for this pattern since it’s wider? Also, do you think that 100% 10oz Cotton will be heavy enough to skip the interfacing? Thanks for this pattern, cute diaper bags are hard to find!

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  93. I used your pattern to make a diaper bag for my baby and I loved it. It turned out really well. I changed the dimensions and made the strap a bit longer and added a few other things. I’m a stay at home mom and I was just wondering if I could use your pattern to make diaper bags to sell. I would appreciate it if you would email me back. Thanks for the wonderful tutorial.

  94. Thank you so much for your awesome tutorial, your instructions were so easy to follow I just made a bag for myself and absolutely love it. It is the perfect size for everything I need.

  95. Thank you so much for your pattern.

    The instructions were really easy to follow and the bag is the perfect size for everything I carry (a lot more spacious than I thought it was going to be when I cut it out and started making it).

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  98. I just finished making this bag for the first time, and I LOVE it. Thank you so much. This is definitely going on my list of top items to make for baby gifts (though it did take me nearly seven hours all together, so only for good friends!).
    This is really the best tutorial I’ve seen for a diaper bag.
    One small change I made was to attach the strap to the exterior before sewing in the lining, in the same method as you pre-attach the flap – that way the strap comes from between the lining and exterior instead of being sewn on at the end. I went back and forth three times every time I sewed through the strap, which was three times all told, so it shold be sturdy despite having no x through it. (time will tell!)

  99. Love this – seriously. It is cuter/better than any pattern I could find, free or for purchase. Thanks for taking the time to post this and creating the tute!!

  100. Thank you. I made a hip diaper bag yesterday. I used corduroy and PUL, and I would not recommend using either. First PUL does not sew well unless its inside out. Second the corduroy was too thick for multiple layers going threw the machine (I have a White Jean sewing machine and was using jean needles).

    I ended up omitting the front and back and one side exterior pockets due to the layering issues as well as one inside pocket and I still had trouble getting it to sew. Next time I make this pattern I will try regular cotton and perhaps hid the PUL (used in making cloth diapers and mama cloth to prevent liquid seepage) between the layers in place of the interfacing.

  101. Pingback: Diaper Bag! « The Kooymans

  102. Your tutorial is amazing! I just made this bag and absolutely love it! Thank you so much for taking the time to make it perfectly detailed (not too much, not too little)! I’m a beginner sewer and was able to follow it easily. Thanks again!

  103. I just finished this bag and I love it. Hope to makes some for some expecting mother’s I know. However, did I miss the instructions on how to attach the flap and how to attach the inner lining of the back zipper? I read the directions word for word and must have missed these steps. Do you mind filling me in on those steps? Thanks.

  104. I love love love this tutorial!!! I looked over many websites with diaper bag tutorials, and this one has been my absolute fav!!! I’ve cut out all te pieces and am getting ready to iron on the vinyl the them. I am a beginner sewer. Looking through the tutorial, I’ve seemed to lose where to add the flap to the body. Can you explain that part???

  105. Just jumping in to answer the question about the flap. It’s in the tutorial at part 9a. You attach it (right sides/raw edges together) to the exterior bag just before joining it to the lining. The edges are then hidden inside when you turn it all the right way out. Hope this makes sense….I don’t think my tutorial writing could ever be as clear as this one is.

    By the way, I’ve added pictures of my finished bag here – http://uniqueearthling.co.uk/Bags.aspx

    I absolutely love this pattern and can’t wait to get more fabric to make another one.

  106. I found your tutorial when browsing the internet for planned projects and avoiding study! I can’t wait to get started. I have some owl print PUL that I think I will use as a liner, and when my exam is out of the way I shall go on a hunt for for nice material for the outer. I am thinking I may make one for work also, which will never have a nappy in it, but for which pockets would be great.

    Thanks for sharing!!

  107. Pingback: Ellie is looking forward to meeting her new cousin! « Salmon and Souvlaki

  108. I just made this bag for my sister, but now I don’t want to give it to her! I was so impressed with myself. The tutorial was so great. I’m going to make one for myself when I need it. Thank you so much!

  109. Great Pattern! I have made one for me and one as a gift and everyone loves them! I have had a few offers from people wanting to pay me to make bags for them. Just wanted to know if you were ok with people selling items they make from your pattern. I’ve made a few tweeks but its still based on your pattern. Thanks!

  110. I love this pattern! It is the perfect size bag to carry every day for me and all the stuff I need for my 1-yo, but without looking like a diaper bag. I consider myself an advanced beginner and your tutorial was wonderful, easier than a store bought pattern. I am now making a second one for a spare, and directed my pregnant sister-in-law to your website for the pattern. Thank you thank you!!!

  111. I have now started my bag and am very excited at how good it will look!! The tutorial is great, and broken into nice small bits and so I feel like I am whizzing through it.

    I am adding ‘buggy straps’ (made from interfaced lining fabric at the same width as the main strap, which I will attach to the inside of the bag, and which are adjustable with a large buckle with which to attach them to the buggy handle) and also another full width velcro-closed pocket to the back (to come to a couple of inches below the zipped pocket) to be able to place a change mat directly into for easy access (my current nappy bag has this feature and I find it really handy).

    Will be directing an expectant friend to your tutorial.

    Thanks again.

    • Where did you find the pattern? I read the entire tutorial and I can’t find it! Thanks!

  112. Hi There,
    This pattern is awesome! I have made 6 or 7 of these bags now, and they are a big hit with my friends. My bag is in year two of heavy usage, and despite the fact I chose not to use vinyl, the interfaced cotton is standing up well to my two kiddos. This bag is roomy enough for cloth diapers, which is nice because many diaper bags don’t have adequate space.
    I’d like to sell some bags. Could you contact me about this?
    Thanks again for sharing a wonderful design with us mommas:)

  113. I am currently attempting to attach the zipper…kind of nervous because I’ve never done a zipper before. My zipper is actually 22 inches long. Can I still use it? Thanks!

  114. I’ve had three diaper bags in the past year, and the one I made from your pattern is my favorite by far! I’ve made two in different fabrics, and they hold up incredibly well even without using vinyl. A tip for others, I used fusible fleece interfacing when I used a printed cotton for more stability, and it gives the bag a polished, store-bought look. Also, I covered a piece of heavy cardboard in fabric and placed it in the bottom of the bag for additional support.
    Thank you thank you for the pattern! I agree with one post that it’s more stylish and easier than the store bought patterns I’ve used

  115. Wow! What an excellent tutorial! I sewed a messenger bag recently using a commercial pattern, and it was sooooo difficult! Came out great, but your tute is much easier to follow, and the bag is every bit as good. Thanks so much for sharing!

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  117. I am a mom of two and lose my phone and keys so easily in the bag I have now. I can’t wait to try this pattern out once i pick up my sewing machine! I am such a fan of how many pockets this bag has!

    I am also curious on your thoughts about people selling their finished bags from this tutorial/pattern. I have not been able to find a copyright on your blog.

    Thank you for a great tutorial and I hope to hear from you soon! :D

    – dcampbell1585 at yahoo dot com

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  119. Great Tutorial and design. It is a perfect size and shape. I tweeked it a bit with smaller interior pockets on one side for small items, such as lip balm, hand sanitizer, etc. I also did velcro so I can adjust the flap depending on how full it gets! :-) I did the interior in commercial grade patent-leather-like vinyl upholstery for easy clean up! I added an adjustable 2″ nylon strap. Thanks for sharing your tutorial http://www.flickr.com/photos/65564763@N07/sets/72157627146082961/

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  121. Hi! I also made the bag as a total beginner (my first encounter with a sewing machine was in the middle of June, 2 months ago and I have a 6 month old baby so I don’t have a lot of free time to learn) and it wasn’t too hard. It took me 10 and a half hours (only cutting the materials took me 2 1/2 hours!) but now I have an original, unique diaper bag! Thanks a lot for the tutorial!


  122. Jessica, for step 6 after attaching the bottom gusset to the side gussets, I took either the front or back piece and pinned the bottom of it to the bottom gusset. Then I pinned the sides gussets to the sides of the back/front piece.

    It got tricky when it came time to sew. I started at the top of the bag and went down the side. I made sure the bottom of the bag/bottom gusset was folded as much as it could out of the way so I could sew close to the corner. Then I turned and folded it the other way so I could sew the bottom, then went up the other side, etc. I sorta ignored the pinning the corners like “this” reference in the instructions. It worked out just fine.

  123. I just finished making this bag for my daughter’s baby (due in about 3 weeks).
    I added a piece of plastic craft mesh to the base and attached with a few stitches to make it sit square on the floor as I made the bag out of cotton fabric. With heavy duty interfacing and the mesh… wow! I can’t wait to show her tomorrow.

  124. Thanks so much for this tutorial. I think it’s the best out there where diaper bags are concerned, and I’ve been looking for a while. I made the first bag for my friend who had her baby 5 weeks ago, and now made the second for myself – I’m due with my first baby in about 6 weeks.

    Lots of friends and a few strangers have asked me and my friend about the bag, but unfortunately lots of them also don’t read English very well or understand inches. So I’ve posted a German version of your tutorial with centimeters on my blog. I don’t get many visitors at all there, but I thought this way I could point the people interested to your tutorial and help them understand it, too. I give full credit of course. Please let me know if this is ok with you. I don’t plan to make and sell (too much work!), and I would refer anyone to you who would ask about that option.


    Thanks again!
    Eva from Münster

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  126. This is one of the best tutorials I’ve ever followed. I made an orange/white/grey diaper bag and thoroughly enjoyed following along and watching the bag come together. I added adjustable backpack straps, used canvas belting for the messenger strap and made it adjustable as well, used nylon for the lining, and replaced the 2 magnetic snaps with an 8″ long strip of velcro. Thank you, thank you, THANK YOU!!

  127. Thanks so much for the brilliant tutorial, the bag came together really well. I’ve just made it for an expectant neighbour. I used Amy Butler Soul Blossoms Peacock Feathers fabric and it looks lovely.
    Pictures on Flickr

    Hip Mama Diaper Bag

  128. Pingback: Hooray for Baby Maria! (August, September, October, November Sewing) « Salmon and Souvlaki

  129. Pingback: Hip Mama Diaper Bag | Free Purse, Bag & Tote Patterns and Tutorials

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  133. Hi! I wanted to thank you for sharing this tutorial on such a great bag. :-)

    As some mentioned in the previous comments (which I read AFTER I sewed this), the measurement of elastic is probably too small for flimsier fabrics and will make the lining be pulled inward. I would use a longer amount of elastic next time. I also added interfacing to the lining of the zippered pocket to give more sturdiness to the back of the bag.

  134. What an awsome tutorial! I am fairly good at sewing but with your instructions it looks like it was done by a pro!! I was a little nervous about working with vinyl but it was super easy! ALSO I will never fight a zipper AGAIN!! That was the easiest thing I have ever done! I actually passed the zipper instruction on to my mom, who is awsome at sewing and she was impressed!! I am so proud of my bag I can’t wait till my baby is born (6 more weeks!!) so I can show off my new bag!! I used duct for the outer layer and lined it with interfacing and it really looks like something I paid over $75 for! Thanks AGAIN!!

  135. Pingback: 45 Awesome Free Bag Making Tutorials : frugalandthriving.com.au

  136. Pingback: Hip Mama Diaper Bag | Unique Earthling

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  138. Love, love the bag pattern thanks! I made a couple modifications. I liked the snaps in between 2 layers of fabric on the front pockets so the backs of the snaps weren’t accessible from inside the pockets, but did end up sewing a circle around the snap before attaching the pocket to make it a little more sturdy.

    I also have made other bags before and liked the idea of having the straps sewn into the sides of the bag instead of sewing them on the outside (I don’t love the look of my attempt to sew an X via topstitching). I basted them into place before the final stage of sewing the lining and bag together and it worked perfectly.

  139. Pingback: Show us your baby changing/diaper bag - Page 3 - BabyandBump

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  141. Such a nice bag. It was so easy with the tutorial. I made it in camo twill with orange rip stop lining so my son in-law would have something that wasn’t so babyish. Thanks!!

  142. Many thanks for your tutorial. I’ve just finished making the bag as a gift for a friend who is going to give birth in a few days. I can’t believe I managed to make something like this!

  143. Thanks for this tutorial! I do have a question. I’m starting to cut my fabric and am confused about piece B. It says cut 4 lining, 2 fabric, and 2 interfacing. Why is it not cut 3 lining and 3 fabric? 3 seems right because there is a front, back and flap. Thanks for the help in advance!

  144. I am in the UK and found this pattern online. I am expecting my first baby in 2 weeks and finished making this bag yesterday out of oil cloth/vinyl and recycled TOMS flags.. I’m not amazing at sewing but this pattern was really helpful and easy to understand.. I can’t wait to start using it! Thanks for sharing the pattern! :)

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  146. Pingback: I made a diaper bag! | jennysold

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  148. Pingback: Diaper Bag for Baby E | Crafts by Wendy

  149. Pingback: Messenger style diaper bag « TACrafty

  150. At first, I was a little hesitant to try making this bag. (There are so many steps!)
    But I’m not exactly a newbie with a sewing machine, so I figured that if some of these other ladies could do it, then so could I!
    It turned out so cute!
    Thank you so much!

  151. Pingback: Tons of Tutes- For Baby & Mama

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  153. Pingback: Hip Mama Diaper Bag | Absolutely Moms Blog

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  155. WOW! This is exactly what I’ve been searching for! Your bag is totally awesome, and your tutorial is very well written. The photos are a huge help. I am truly grateful that you took the time to do this and share it with us. I will be making this as a gift for a friend’s baby shower. I know she’ll love it!

    • PS: I just finished this bag and can’t believe that I made it! It looks totally professional! I made a few small changes – I did an adjustable nylon webbing strap, used plastic snaps instead of velcro for the pockets, lined the outside pockets with Insul-Brite and laminated cotton, and made the interior of laminated cotton with a coordinating home dec fabric flap liner. I added an interior key fob with a plastic snap (love those things). I made my pocket elastic about 14″ so that it wouldn’t pull too much (after learning that from my first bag). I almost don’t want to part with it! My husband asked me to make him one to use as a camera bag.

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  157. Pingback: An Unconventional Baby Registry: 34 Things You NEED (or should make) Before Baby Comes | More With Less Mom

  158. Pingback: Fab AND finished ~ Madie’s diaper bag | Sleepy Owl Studio

  159. I am making the diaper bag using cotton fabric for both the outer bag and lining. What kind of Pellon should I use for the interfacing?

  160. Hip Mama Diaper bag: I am confused as you have the side pockets made and say place the pocket piece against one of the interfaced side gusset pieces, but I don’t see directions for making the side gussets. HELP!!

  161. Just made your bag today. Thank you for the tutorial. I was intimidated before I started but found your instructions made it a breeze. Made the bag exactly the way you recommended, thanks so much!

  162. Pingback: Hip Mama Diaper Bag | E Coach Diaper Bags

  163. Pingback: Diaper Bag « NiriNihu

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  165. I love my bag! I did make a couple tiny adjustments, I fully lined the back pocket because I am OCD like that, and I only put elastic in 1 side of the bag and made my strap adjustable, otherwise I followed the directions to the letter and it was wonderful! Thank you for the great tutorial, I love my new bag!

  166. Pingback: Hip Mama Diaper Bag from A Mingled Yarn « Stacey in Stitches

  167. Please help me. I got all the way to the end, pulled the exterior out through the lining and all is great except I sewed the flap inside the lining. What did I do wrong? How can I fix it?

  168. Hi,
    I’ve just used this pattern to make a useful bag for myself, out of pieces of old army uniform my boyfriend gave me, so it’s got an unusual two-tone camouflage look! I wish I knew how to send you a picture.
    My only worry while making it is that 10 inches of elastic seems rather short for the pocket pieces; my finished pocketed-lining-piece is a lot more pulled-in than the one in your photo. This means the whole lining is pulled in in the finished bag. I think it’ll be fine when I’ve got the pockets full of stuff but it just doesn’t look like your photo (at step 7) – 10 inches of elastic stretched over a piece of fabric 15 inches wide would pull the fabric in – your photo looks like the elastic must be at least 14 inches, assuming the material isn’t nailed to the work surface?! I don’t think I measured anything wrong; it all fits together. Well nevermind; I love the bag! Thanks!

  169. Pingback: Top 10 Great Ideas for Making your Own Handmade Bag

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  171. EEK! I love my new bag. It is a dad friendly diaper bag made out of gold flecked brown tween and lined with plaid cotton that reminds me of old wrangler cowboy shirts. Great tutorial, most professional looking thing I’ve ever made, and if I can do it, anyone can! First zipper ever too!

  172. Hello,

    This tutorial is fantastic. I was also wondering about sewing to sell a modified version of your design.

  173. Pingback: Hunter’s bag-my first project made not using a print pattern | mamasewbusy

  174. Pingback: Nappy/Diaper Bag ( Large) | Absolutely Moms Blog

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  176. Pingback: Diaper Backpack DIY | ambitionistas

  177. HI! I made a diaper bag for my cousin sister following your tutorial and it turned out great.. She loved it. I’d like for you to visit my facebook page and see the picture of the bag. My profile name is ‘Sarah Sew’. Thanks and hugs!!!!

  178. I’ve made this bag twice, and I’m getting ready to make #3. I used cotton for the 1st and it fell apart pretty quickly. I used cotton Duck on the 2nd. I replaced the snaps with Velcro, and made 2 double pocket pieces on the inside rather than the 3 pocket one. My sister gets complimented on it every time she goes out. Fantastic tutorial!

  179. Pingback: Friday Finds – a list of 18 free tutorials for Diaper/Nappy Bags | a little bird made me

  180. Hello, I’m from Argentina and I love your bag. I’ve been doing things for selling for a year now and a diaper bag was in my mind since the beginning. I found yours and I adapted it a little bit. Now I’m selling them and my customers love them. Thanks a lot!!!

  181. Pingback: Hip Mama Diaper Bag | Thomasina Cummings Designs - Crochet patterns for all occasions

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  184. Pingback: September Sewing: Hooray for Steph and Baby #2! | Salmon and Souvlaki

  185. Great bag! I made a couple of changes though… I added 2″ to the width of the side pocket pieces then pleated the bottom so it would hold a bottle more easily; I also added velcro flaps to them. I then lined the sides and side pockets with insul-bright to help keep bottles cold/warm. Husband is impressed!

  186. Pingback: Hip Mama Diaper Bag - We Love Moms

  187. Pingback: Top nappy bag patterns | Ten Poppies

  188. Pingback: Hip Mama Diaper Bag @Love-To-Sew.com

  189. Pingback: Baby Gear Filled Nest « studiocharm

  190. Pingback: Hip Mama Diaper (Nappy) Bag | Thomasina Cummings Designs

  191. Pingback: Messenger Diaper Bag! | Gluesticks

  192. Pingback: Hip Mama Diaper (Nappy) Bag - Thomasina Cummings Designs

  193. I love the bag, and look forward to making one…I am going to use “Stiff Stuff” from Lazy Girl Designs to make the bag stand and not flop… My daughter is due in September, and I want to make her one of these type bags for her…Thank you for the Tutorial!

  194. Pingback: The Perfect Diaper Bag! - Skirt Fixation

  195. Pingback: Stylish Diaper Bag for the Hip Mama « Sewing Shop Blog

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  197. Pingback: Diaper bag | Made by Metteks

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