Purses are one-size-fits all, and they’re so easy to customize, making them a perfect project for beginners to tackle. Check out this collection of 10 unique (and free!) purse patterns, and feel free to personalize them to your liking by adding pockets, adjusting straps and more.
Photo via Choly Knight
1. Boom Box Bag w/ Piping & Inner Pockets
As the designer claims, this bag was designed with retro technology in mind: basically, it’s a gusset style bag, with detachable straps, lots and lots of pockets and piping details. Isn’t it fun?
Photo via So Sew Easy
2. Zipper Top Tote Bag
Here’s the perfect professional-quality purse pattern. It includes lots of pockets on the outside and on the inside, which help keep everything in its place. Utilizing pre-made handles and twist-locks to achieve that fancy store-bought look a bag should have, this free purse sewing pattern makes great use of some contrasting splashes of color here and there.
Photo via Lisa Ratford
3. Good-To-Go Messenger Bag
This is a pattern that comes in two sizes — what about using it for a “mom and daughter” pair of purses? It’s fully lined, closed by a magnetic snap and comes with a tiny pocket on the inside.
Photo via Tutorial Girl
4. Recycle Cargo Pants to a Messenger Bag
I think one of the most recycled garments is cargo pants, because of their fun yet practical pockets. Take an old pair in a boring color, add fabric in a contrasting color for the lining, and you’ll end up with deluxe, custom messenger bag!
Photo via Wesens-art
5. “Sometimes” Bag
Sometimes you just need to fit in your handbag some important letter-sized (or A4-sized, if you live on the other side of the pond), without crumpling them. Here’s the answer: sew this “sometimes” bag, which will hold them in a separate compartment, keeping your letters safe! Other interesting features of this free purse pattern include several inner pockets and detachable straps.
Photo via Sew Some Stuff
6. The Cover Girl Bag
This easy squared bag shows you how choosing the right fabric can do a huge difference! The purse pattern in itself is beginner-friendly and fast to put together. Choosing a contrasting fabric for the handles and a black-and-white checkered print for the main fabric will have people asking you “where did you buy your cool bag?”
Photo via Couture Academic
7. Sweetheart Bag
What do I like about this bag? It has a fabulous shape, thanks to darts, and it’s stylish enough for a night on the town.
Photo via stephanickety
8. Origami Bag
This bag can carry a huge lot of things: the designer says she rolls four beach towels in it, sometimes she uses for her 17.8″ laptop and it would be perfect even as a diaper bag. If you think to use it as a regular handbag, you’d probably have to sew in some inside pockets or you might find yourself digging in it to find anything, like a modern Mary Poppins!
Photo via Swoon Patterns
9. Swoon Ethel Tote Bag
A nice gusset bag featuring an exterior slip pocket split into two smaller sections, which gains more body thanks to a layer of foam interfacing, sandwiched between the outside fabric and the lining. Play with different fabrics to create your own version, personalize it by embroidering or stenciling something onto the outside.
Photo via Choly Knight
10. Raven Boho Bag
Another bag without top closures, this time featuring a zippered pocket on the outside (I would add another one on the lining, but I’m obsessed by pockets!). This pattern includes instructions for the front decoration, made by painting or appliqué. Use a vinyl fabric for the handles and the gusset for a store-bought look.