a while back, my buddy Anna from Noodlehead asked if i’d help give her newly revamped Sidekick Tote pattern a once-over as she prepared to re-release it, which she did in late November. i’d sewn the Sidekick Tote before and remembered really enjoying it, so i was game. i didn’t remember the pattern having any stumbling blocks the first time, but PDF patterns have come a long way in the last couple years, so I get why Anna wanted to spruce it up a bit. the diagrams are a little clearer, the cutting instructions and sewing directions are a little easier to follow, that sort of thing. this time i thought it’d be fun to try a bit of hand painting on the fabric, inspired by another Portland crafty lady, Anna Joyce. i’ve admired Anna’s work at various craft shows and boutiques around town. i also follow her on instagram, where i noticed lately she’s been doing a lot of simple but graphic handpainting/stamping onto fabric, and it’s the type where i go “heeeeey i think i could do that!” so i gave it a whirl. for this bag, i went for the sort of messy black painted stripes, a similar look to the ones Anna Joyce does on her scarves. i used some natural canvas duck that i got in the outdoor section of JoAnn (it’s heavy stuff – makes a very substantial bag and i didn’t even interface it!) and painted on it with black fabric paint and a sponge brush, not aiming for perfection at all and just sort of eyeballing the space between stripes. i sewed the bag, then went back in with a pencil tip and some gold metallic paint to add delicate little dots to pretty it up a bit. the top of the bag is just the same canvas fabric, left unpainted. the lining is from carolyn friedlander’s botanics line (on sale here right now – i might have to get more because it looks awesome with everything). i liked how the little gold dots tied in nicely with the lining, which also has gold metallic in it (so pretty in person but always hard to show in photos). the bag hardware is also gold – i got that at fabric depot. it’s a bit tricky to find the hardware listed in the pattern but i found a 1.5” D ring works well for the bottom of the strap. the strap is adjustable, which is nice if you sometimes like a cross body bag and sometimes just want it to go over the shoulder. this is the small version of the tote with the pleated pocket option and bias tape pocket binding. this pattern sews up relatively quickly and Anna guides you to a nice clean finish. i’ve said it before and i’ll say it again – the woman is a genius when it comes to purse designs and patterns! i sent this bag off to Jess as a birthday present, which makes it the second Sidekick Tote that i’ve sent to a Jessica as a birthday present – I did it a couple years ago too! do you know how many Jessicas there are in sewingblogland? A LOT.
you can get your hands on the Sidekick Tote PDF pattern here. Anna has also been working on releasing her patterns in paper and i always get excited to spot one in the wild – keep your eyes open at your local fabric shops!
33 thoughts on “handpainted sidekick tote”
I love creating my own patterns and fabric painting, I really to do it again. This is beautiful! Jess is one lucky lady!
thanks! i love doing it too – it takes a little extra time but it’s so fun.
Smart use of the golden yellow accents! Love the idea to paint it. Truly one of a kind gift. Lucky Jess!
That is a very cool bag my friend! I love the hand painted fabric and those little gold dots are the perfect addition!
Super duper bag. The gold dots are the icing on the cake.
thanks you guys!
Kristin, this bag is amazing! I have to tell you – I think you have a special gift for making really awesome bags. Of course, everything you make is awesome, but your bags are always in the ‘coolest bags i’ve ever seen’ category… and i’m not even that into bags. you make me want to get into bags! so that probably sounds a bit over the top, but it’s true. this bag is completely genius – from the handpainted stripes to the gold dots. i really couldn’t love it more! you should become a bag designer for anthropologie or something. 🙂
oh my gosh rachel, you’re the nicest. thank you!!!! hmmmm designer for anthro sounds pretty freakin’ sweet. 😉
WOW! The painting is PERFECTION!! I love the gold dot detail too and of course I love detail shots! I want to see it up close and personal! I want to get in the items personal space:) I agree with everything Rachel above said!
aw girl, thanks!!! well it lives in california now, so maybe you could pay Jess a visit. haha.
Yeah, Kristin! This is so cool! You are the gold dot girl.
if i ever need to change my blog name, i’m going with “gold dot girl.” 😉
So cute! The gold dots are the perfect touch.
Oh, dang. The hand painting just MAKES it. I love it! I would not have thought to make this bag in canvas (but how easy! and it must not need much interfacing at all!) but with the painting, it’s truly special.
yep, no interfacing! it was tricky to sew – needed a heavy needle and binding clips instead of pins in certain places (and i’m pretty sure i still poked myself a few times), but the sturdiness is worth it.
Oh my goodness! I love this and love how creatively it came together. Those gold dots! Perfect!
nice job- that canvas gives it a really great shape
I LOVE this bag so much, K! The little gold dots are perfection. and it’s SO well made. I’m almost scared to use it, it’s so pristine and awesome! You are a sewing rock star!! Thank you again! 😀
haha you’d better use it! i won’t be offended it if gets a little dirty. you’re so welcome, girl. i’m really glad you like it and i hope you had a great birthday. 🙂
Love this bag! The painted stripes are just perfection.
Wow Kristin! This is so so cool! Love it
that is one extra special handmade gift! gold dots + hand painted stripes + that lining… it’s gorgeous!!
I love how that looks! The painting is very cool.
Oh gosh Kristin! I love love it! The details you added are so great. Very inspiring!!! Thanks again for being all around awesome. 🙂
thanks for making awesome patterns, anna! fun to play around with the details when you have a great design to work with.
I’m not typically a bag person (don’t even carry a purse) but I think I would make an exception for this one! I love, LOVE the handprinted stripes! Thanks for sharing the link to Anna Joyce – loved looking through her work. I so impressed by your creativity in trying it for yourself – I would say it was a huge success! Such a sweet birthday gift too:)
aw such flattery, thanks lucinda! 🙂
I love your fabric!
it came out fabulous. i really enjoy the eye-balled stripes and spaces. and you were right on the gold dots.
did you wash the canvas? i know of another blogger who washes it a few times. i’m wondering how stiff the canvas is.
Those little gold dots are pure genius! Love the bag and I’m with Lucinda, not normally a bag person, but I love this one too!
Beautiful! What kind of paint did you use?
thanks! i just used tulip brand fabric paint for the black stripes, and jacquard metallic gold for the tiny polka dots.