I started my process of designing my tote bag by remembering the times when bags have been uncomfortable or unpleasant to look at. When designing my tote bag I kept in mind that I love a good pop of color in a bag, and I need it to be able to hold anything. My mood board is a colorful mash up of inspiration from Erin Robertson and Commes Des Garcon. I was truly inspired by the interesting ruffled shapes and the beautiful bright colors. I started to sketch bag designs with the shapes seen in the mood board. I started with six sketches to fully explore some of the possible bag shapes. I re-drew and further thought out three designs, and decided on my favorite one. This tote bag will be a tote bag, backpack hybrid. It will have a draw string at the top to be able to create the lovely ruffled shapes seen in my mood board, and the straps could either be a shoulder length tote bag or be tightened and worn as a backpack. The hardware I chose for the bad is also inspired by the glamour of Erin and Garcon’s design work.
Following the design stage I started by making my pattern and a paper prototype to reveal any issues with the pattern. My pattern revealed the piece I created to be the draw string was half as long as I needed it to be when cutting I adjusted by folding the fabric over twice.
Proceeding I cut out my fabric and assembled it following the steps written out in the pictures above. The final bag is a convertible shoulder tote bag and backpack. It has a double inside pocket perfectly fitted for a laptop or sketchbook, and can be used for any occasion. The purple color and glitter hardware is inspired by my mood board. Additionally, the shape of the tote especially the top ruffle created when the draw string is pulled is inspired by the ruffles and shapes seen in my mood board. This project taught me a variety of new skills and the importance of pressing your seams. As for the cosmetic bag, I used tabs of fake leather to close up the zipper ends and boxed the bottom of the bag two inches in order to create more volume.