Textiles & Quilting

My Very Useful Messenger Bag with Stuart Hillard


SAT, 21 May 2022

10:00 – 16:00

Use your favourite fabrics to create this fabulously versatile cross-body bag.


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The perfect cross-body bag, suitable for men and women and a great opportunity to show off your favourite fabrics!  Stuart will introduce you to all the basic bag making techniques, including making a bag with a gusset, internal and external pockets and creating an adjustable shoulder strap.

The course is suitable for most levels of ability, but it is  essential that you know how to use your sewing machine confidently.


About the Day

My Very Useful Messenger Bag will run from 10am until 4pm and includes refreshments throughout the day including fresh coffee, teas and a light lunch.



Essential Information

In this project you will make a zippered pocket, an adjustable shoulder strap and sew on a magnetic bag closure.  (Dimensions: height 10”, width 9”, depth 3”)

You will need to bring:

1/2m fabric (main fabric) for the outer bag.  Stuart used a dark charcoal grey linen texture cotton

One 10” square of fabric (contrast fabric) for the outer front flap.  Stuart used a print featuring zebras.  If your design has an obvious motif you want to “centre” or fussy cut, you might need extra fabric to do so.

1/2m lining fabric.  Stuart used lime jumbo polka dot cotton fabric

One package of Bosal In R Form single sided fusible

60” waist shaper or 2” x 60” of medium weight fusible interfacing

One 8” zip to match outer fabrics

2 rectangular rings with 1 ½” openings

1 rectangular strap slider with 1 ½” opening

1 x faux leather magnetic satchel buckle.  Stuart loves the Prym version, alternatively you could do a button and loop in which case bring a large button or toggle.

Thread to match your fabrics

The workshop takes place in the First Floor Gallery space.  There is a flight of stairs and no lift access.  If you have any access issues, please get in touch to discuss alternative arrangements.

Please note our cancellation policy.

Your Tutor

Your Tutor

Stuart Hillard

Stuart’s career in crafting began over 20 years ago when he started designing quilts and teaching workshops. He started writing for Popular Patchwork magazine, designing many cover quilts but it was his breakout appearance in the first series of “The Great British Sewing Bee” and subsequent co-presenting of the Christmas Special that really launched his career.

Stuart has authored four bestselling sewing books, “Sew Fabulous”, “Use Scraps, Sew Blocks, Make 100 Quilts”, “Simple Shapes, Stunning Quilts” and his newest book, “Bags for Life” was published by Pavilion in Summer 2021. He is a fabric designer and his beautiful designs are available Worldwide. He is a regular guest presenter on Create and Craft TV and Sewing Street TV, has appeared alongside Kirstie Allsopp a number of times on Channel 4 and is a regular on BBC radio. He writes for four craft magazines each month including the market leaders, Sew and Crafts Beautiful. He writes each month for Let’s Get Crafting, sharing his love for yarn and includes a knit crochet or weaving pattern each issue. He is a global ambassador for some of the best loved names in craft, knitting and sewing. When he isn’t knitting, sewing or cooking something, Stuart is likely to be found on the 88 acre farm in North Yorkshire that he and his husband Charlie are renovating.