canvas portside duffle

next in the gifting line up, the thing i was most excited to make – a portside duffle!

portside duffle

when Jen of Grainline Studio released her Portside Travel Set pattern a few months ago, i really wanted to get it for a “someday in the future” project (the pattern includes a duffle, dopp kit, and small zippered pouch – awesome value, really, and would make a great wedding/father’s day/graduation gift!).  i exercised restraint and held off on buying the pattern, though – until i drew my brother-in-law’s name for our family gift exchange and i knew it would make a great gift for him.

portside duffle

he’s a tall guy (it’s a huge bag!), he’s a musician (needs to haul stuff around!), and he’s a creative person (appreciates handmade!).  plus i feel like i have a good sense of his taste.  it just seemed like the perfect thing.  when he opened it he seemed to really like it, and didn’t even realize i made it until he saw his initials inside (see below), so it paid off for sure!

portside duffle

i’ve been interested in sewing with heavier materials lately.  i bought a beckel tote for my mother in law for Christmas and the thick canvas and the heavy duty topstitching was fascinating – i bought it at this awesome bazaar in town where i could talk to the woman that sewed it (on an industrial Juki, she said), so this was sort of my chance to put my Bernina 380 to the test and see if i could make something similar in style.

portside duffle

i bought heavy thread, cotton webbing, and a bunch of metal zippers at JoAnn, plus natural and camel colored canvas duck in the outdoor section there.  some of the hardware was harder to find and i had to get it at Mill End.  the bag is lined with yarn dyed essex in leather, which i got as a remnant at Bolt.

portside duffel

my husband said the machine sounded different as i sewed this bag – i honestly don’t think my old machine could have handled the super heavy material!  walking foot, size 16 needle, i pulled out all the tricks to keep it running smoothly.

i quilted the bottom with a layer of batting to help it sit upright if he set it down.

portside duffel

and skipped the dopp kit, but made the little pouch…easy and quick:

portside duffel

i ran into just a couple snags – i think there was a missing pattern mark on the end pieces as to where i should place the straps, and i found the lining a bit too large for the bag, which may have been due to the fact that it’s linen and stretchy versus the decidedly non-stretchy nature of the outer.  not sure, i’d have to make it again to find out.  and my husband has requested one, so it’s on the horizon once he figures out the colors he wants!

portside duffel

pretty fun making such a heavy duty, masculine bag though!  it just feels so LEGIT, you know?  when you finish a project and have that sense of “wow, i actually made that!”, it’s always fun.


27 thoughts on “canvas portside duffle

  1. Kate McIvor says:

    I love this duffel. Your brother-in-law will use it forever. I’m jealous that you’re in portland! What a dream to stop by Mill End and Bolt for some high-quality bits. 🙂

  2. Brooke says:

    I know exactly what you mean! And it is super legit! I know my husband would love one of these and I’m going to put it on my list for his birthday this spring!

  3. carolyn says:

    Can I just say how impressed I am with all your Christmas sewing? Not only does it all look amazing, but I’m super-impressed that you did it at all! You go, girl 🙂
    This really does look fantastic though. I think my machine would die a sudden death if I tried to sew through fabric that thick!

    • kristin says:

      Aw thanks, girl. Too many 1am bedtimes contributed to this (you haven’t even seen the SIX things I sewed for my four nephews!!) but I’m proud of what I accomplished, for sure. 🙂

  4. Teresa says:

    Ooh…I love it! Where did you get your cotton webbing for your straps? I looked at my local fabric shop (in our small town) and no such luck. I’m going to have to order online or head to the big city I guess!

  5. Kelly says:

    Kristin this is so amazing! I love it. Your sewing looks so professional, I’m not surprised he didn’t know it was hand made at first!

  6. gail says:

    it’s so pro!! i can’t believe all your christmas sewing, especially throwing this into the mix – it looks complicated! you’re a machine!

  7. girllikethesea says:

    So amazing!!!! At first glance it looks like leather on the bottom. I love it with your striped shirt. So nautical! I don’t blame the husband for wanting one of his own.

  8. Monica Swift says:

    Kristin!! This is amazing. Sadly, I have doubts that my machine could handle something this substantial, but it definitely makes me want to try to make a few totes… Love the color scheme and quilted bottom. Well done. Maybe you can put the husband off until it suits another holiday 😉

  9. Cherie says:

    Love this so much!! The colors are great and it definitely does not look “homemade” – looks LEGIT! I totally want to make a set for myself too. Wonder if my machine could handle it . . .

  10. Melissa Q. says:

    This duffle is blowing my mind. The fabric choices are perfect and I love the little zipper pouch. It must have taken forever! It’s also really adorable next to the preggo belly.

  11. sewcharleston says:

    Wow! Great job! I can understand why he didn’t think you made it at first! My little Brother Project Runway from Wal-Mart could definitely not handle this bag!

  12. Sage says:

    I love the personal touch you added with his initials! I’m thinking I may copy that idea when I make mine. 🙂 I just bought the pattern and was reading through it tonight to see the lining is hand sewn into the dopp bag and the duffel. I noticed that yours lining looks machine sewn. Is that correct? I’m not a fan of hand sewing because my hand sewing tends to look messy. For a bag that looks to take so much time to make, I don’t want my lining to look sloppy. If you did machine sew the lining, I wondered if you had any tips or if it’s as easy as I imagine it will be? Thank you!

leave a comment > > >

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s