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Saturday, 23 May 2015

New Pattern Release: Bodaciously Basic Bucket Bag

Bodaciously Basic Bucket Bag by eSheep Designs
My reversible Bodaciously Basic Bucket Bag in two styles...
On March 13, I wandered over to Shades of Bold and saw Marilyn's totally awesome collection of bucket bags. It's not often that I see something and immediately want to make it, but this time — within a week — I had made my own version of a bucket bag out of waxcloth.

Three weeks later, I had a first draft of my own bucket bag pattern, which I am introducing for sale today: the Bodaciously Basic Bucket Bag! (LOL — I have such a ball naming these things!)

What you actually see here are two reversible bags, in two different styles. (Make this bag and you've instantly got two looks in one — a bargain, right?)

The first "set" of bags — in some wonderful fabric that was gifted to me by my reader Jake — are reversed versions of each other, done with a grommet closure.

Bodaciously Basic Bucket Bag by eSheep Designs
Bodaciously Basic Bucket Bag in grommet style...

The second "set" of bags — in Robert Kaufman fabric from my Craftsy Far East Mystery Box — are also reversed versions of each other, with a "fabric loop" (belt loop type) closure. (By the way, Craftsy's Memorial Day sale is happening right now; I saw similar RK fabric at a great price.)

Bodaciously Basic Bucket Bag by eSheep Designs
Bodaciously Basic Bucket Bag in fabric loop style...

Apart from the reversible feature and the two different closures, you can see that there is an option to add a contrast fabric at the base, two types of pockets and an interesting multi-fabric take on the strap. Let's just say that the number of variables and possible combinations almost allowed this pattern to run away from me, but this is definitely your opportunity to craft a bucket bag that is customized to your particular tastes.

And the truly best part? Bucket bags are so easy to make in the first place! (Hence the "basic" part of the Bodaciously Basic Bucket Bag name.)

The PDF for this bag pattern tops out at 47 pages, with over 125 photos (!) to help you cruise through the project. Included is a fabric planning page for you to print out so that you can keep track of what fabric is being used for what element. (I found it extremely useful given the number of options.) I've also included hints for further customization in case you get hooked on making bucket bags!

Bodaciously Basic Bucket Bag by eSheep Designs
Sample pages from PDF...

Anyone who purchases the pattern between now and next Saturday at 01:00 MDT will be entered into a draw to win back the purchase price!

Pattern Tester Bags

Nekane — my primary pattern proofer/tester — shares her tremendous results here... don't you just love her butterfly (or is it a bee?) embellishment?

Bodaciously Basic Bucket Bag by eSheep Designs crafted by Nekane
Nekane's BBB bag exterior side features a base accent fabric...
(and the afore-mentioned lovely embellishment) 

And the reverse side of her bag is here... I think she has illustrated a good lesson on how to use a fabric with a large print. Sometimes we don't know what to do with such fabric, but here you can see how to achieve great results by featuring an actual print component on each half of the bag. Ingenious!

Bodaciously Basic Bucket Bag by eSheep Designs crafted by Nekane
The interior side features two distinctive leaf patterns... (fabric is IKEA's Gurine)

Krista's bag is — and I didn't even plan this — the one with the fabric loop closure. She apparently took the bag out for a "photo shoot" with water and rock features to play up the fabric's nautical theme. :-)

Bodaciously Basic Bucket Bag by eSheep Designs crafted by Krista
Krista's bright blue toned bag sitting on top of a copy of "American Practical Navigator"...

Krista spoke with me ahead of time about adding a flap to her patch pocket. Nice addition, don't you think? I also noticed that she made herself a cord lock out of her fabric, which you can see in this next photo here of the reverse side of her bag.

Bodaciously Basic Bucket Bag by eSheep Designs crafted by Krista
The reverse side of Krista's bag... 

Many thanks to these two ladies for taking the time to test this pattern thoroughly. Oh, and on theme of "testing", I also want to thank Norma for providing feedback on the first draft of this pattern.

Bodaciously Basic Bucket Bag by eSheep Designs

How Big is this Thing?

The Bodaciously Basic Bucket Bag finishes to an approximate height of 11", with a 10" x 6" base, or 28cm high x 25.5cm x 15cm.

The strap is adjustable to three different lengths to accommodate regular and crossbody use; drop length ranges from 19” (48cm) to 23” (58cm), depending on the style of the bag and the type of ring or swivel snap hook you use to connect the strap. The grommet closure style has the longer drop. (Instructions are provided to make a longer strap if that's your preference.)

Who is this Project For?

Anyone! Truly, nothing is too difficult to do here. The whole idea of a bucket bag is so simple: it’s just an open-ended box in terms of construction. Boxed corners — if you’ve heard of them but have never done them — are simple to do as long as you can refer to a good picture or two. This project will also involve the installation of zippers, snap fasteners and grommets (or eyelets), although — as is my practice — there are options to finish off the bag without any of them if you wish.

Oh, and if you don’t like curves, this bag is for you! All of the sewing is straight lines and the construction pieces are all rectangular in shape, so this is can be considered a beginner project.

How Long Will this Project Take?

It will probably take you longer to decide what to do with this pattern than to sew it up, but let's call it a leisurely weekend project. The more familiar you are with the construction of bucket bags, the faster this will go for you.

What do I Need to Make this Project?

Requirements for this project:
  • 7" (18cm) standard zipper(s) - one for each zippered (optional) pocket
  • 4 metal snap fastener sets for adjustable strap
  • 1/2 yard/metre fusible fleece
  • 1-1/2 yards/metres in total of fabric or approx 5 fat quarters
  • 2 rectangular rings or 2 swivel snap hooks with a 1.25" (3cm) opening
  • Peltex (or equivalent) - 6" x 9" or 15cm x 23cm
  • Twisted cording - about 45" (114cm)
  • 1 circular ring with 1.25" (3cm) opening for optional hanger for keys or bag bling
  • Small amount of hook & loop (aka Velcro) tape for patch pocket closure if desired Decor Bond (or medium weight fusible interfacing of your choice)
  • 14 grommets/eyelets (with setting tools) - 1/4" (6mm) (optional)
  • Cord lock (optional)
  • Pins, clips, ruler, fading marker, your sewing machine's zipper foot, iron, pressing cloth, rotary cutter & mat, etc.
  • Matching/contrasting thread

Want the pattern?
If you can wait for me to send it to you (within 24 hours;
please check your SPAM folder if not in receipt after that time),
use the PayPal button below to purchase this PDF directly from me:

Select PDF Pattern for Purchase

If you want immediate access and don't mind paying a higher price,
you can purchase from my Makerist Shop.

NOTE: Due to the nature of digital products, all PDF sales are final and non-refundable.


If you are "sew" inclined, feel free to make and sell as many Bodaciously Basic Bucket Bags as you care to; I only ask that you credit me and this blog by attaching the following card to the item.

eSheep Designs swing tag


  1. Thank you Rochelle. It's a great pattern and a nice bag!!

  2. This was a great bag to sew, Rochelle! I am really impressed at your quick turn around time on seeing a design you liked and getting it in a pattern format. AND...it's a wonderful format--easy on the eyes, plenty of photos for illustration, and great instructions. Our bag is ready for the beach! :)

    1. Thank you for the endorsement and for your participation! Hope you get good use out of the beach bag.

  3. Woo Hoo, thanks heaps Rochelle, I just got my 'prize'. But really, the real prize is the pattern itself :D I love the vertical pocket and the contrasting 'bum' lol I'm thinking ahead and making these for Christmas presents this year! If I think of it now, I might actually get one made lol



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