- 1 yd of sport nylon (it's more than enough for 1 bag, but not quite large enough for 2)
- 12 inch nylon zipper
- 3 1/2 yards of 1/16 in. twist cord
- 2 sets of large eyelets
- 1 inch square of leather or non-raveling ribbon or fabric
- small scraps of interfacing or stabilizer
Cut two pieces of sport nylon 1 - 20 long x 18 wide and 1- 18x18
Inserting the Zipper:
Cut along the fold and lay the seam flat.
I'm right handed, so I prefer to have the zipper open from right to left. Turn the top in the direction in which you want to open the zipper and mark it with a sticky dot, or if you intend to decorate the front, now would be a good time to do so.
Forming the Outside Zipper Pocket:
Stitch along the sides and bottom to close the pocket. I added a side seam from the edge of the zipper to the bottom. I wanted to make it impossible for small items to move to the far corners of the pocket.
Use a piece of sport nylon to make a pocket for the inside. My wallet is more rectangular than square, so I cut it about 7.5 inches long by 5.5 inches deep. Hem the pocket on all three sides and use a narrow hem foot finish the top. If you don't have a narrow hem foot, just fold over the edge twice and stitch the fold. Basically, you want a finished edge.
Notice that the sides do not form a 90 degree angle. They angle in just a tad to give the pocket a gap.
Assembling the bag:
Place the right sides of the front and back together. Trim the bottom edges so they are even. Stitch 1/2 inch seams along the sides and bottom. Serge or overcast the seams.
Making the cord openings:
Measure down from the raw edge of the bag 1 1/2 inches. Sew large button holes (an inch or so), parallel to the raw edge, on either side of each side seam. The buttonholes will be the opening through which the cords will enter and exit the casing.
Making the cord casing:
With the bag right-side out, fold the top to the inside 1 inch. The buttonholes will be showing on the outside of the bag. Stitch along the raw edge.
Fold the nylon cord in half, and wrap the cord with clear tape. The tape keeps the cord from fraying while putting it through the casing. Cut the cord in half over the tape.
Thread the cord through the casing, starting at one end and ending up at the buttonhole next to where you started. A bodkin is handy for this, but a safety pin will do. Thread the second piece of cording the same way, but start at the opposite side of the backpack.
Fold a 2 inch piece of of interfacing or stabilizer and place it inside the bag, between the front and back of the bag near the zipper. Make a large buttonhole through all layers of the bag near the outside edge. It will need to be large enough to fit the center of the eyelet. Using the tools suggested on the package, attach the eyelets to the bag. You could skip the button hole, but I thought this would keep the eyelet from tearing through.
Thread the cords through the eyelets. Adjust the length of the cords for comfort. You can tie a large knot at the end of the cord, or fold a piece of leather, or other fabric that won't ravel, over the cords and stitch across the cords several times.