Made myself a Compass


It’d be pretty great if I could actually sew a real compass, but today I’m showing off my new Compass Bag. I tried really hard to just pick one of the samples I made and make it my daily bag, but I couldn’t resist the temptation of making another! I think that’s what I love so much about sewing, that going from a few pieces of fabric and bits of hardware to a finished usable item made just for me, is about as good as it gets.


I did manage to go into a bit of a panic and rifled through about half of my canvas weight fabrics before landing on this super simple and classic combo. I was mostly worried about picking out a beautiful canvas weight print only to find it clashing with my favorite orange winter coat (winter is coming!!). So I knew this deep dark Cone Mills denim and Andover Chambray would be perfectly matched.



I adore Alexia’s Print Shop fabric collection, so that made it’s way into the lining along with some of Carolyn Friedlander’s Carkai. They landed near each other in the piles on my work table so it just had to be done, they look amazing together.


For the strap I went with the short fixed length handle version as I think it’ll be easier for winter traveling and general use. Sometimes a cross body strap is too cumbersome in the winter with all the layers you have to wear. But the best part is that by having the swivel clasps, I’m able to easily switch out the strap for whatever kind I like and need depending on the season and what I’m using it for. I think that’s pretty great! Plus the leather should wear like a dream!



Of course I managed to pick out yet another fabric combo that I just have to try, so I’m sure I’ll be making another this week.



Pattern: Compass Bag (large, View B Cargo Pockets with short fixed length handle)
Fabrics: Cone Mills Denim, Andover Chambray (in Denim), Print Shop by Alexia Abegg,
Carkai by Carolyn Friedlander
Leather from my shop \\\ Brass hardware from


23 thoughts on “Made myself a Compass

  1. erin says:

    It’s beautiful and the denim/chambray combo is a great versatile choice!

    1. Anna Graham says:

      Thanks Erin! Yes, I’m all about versatile!

  2. mrs robinson says:

    Such a lovely shape… and a great size too! I love the hardware and leather strap you have used. A great bag!

    1. Anna Graham says:

      Thanks so much! 🙂

  3. glthughes says:

    It’s a beauty. I just recently started sewing & bags are my favorite thing to make, the Compass bag is on my short list of things to make.

    1. Anna Graham says:

      Thank you! Oh fun! Bags are great projects aren’t they?

  4. mariaeb53 says:

    Can hardly wait for my second Making issue!!! I love these fabric choices and leather handles…timeless!

  5. Kaydee says:

    I love this bag so much. The shape of it is perfect! I might try to make a backpack out of it…

  6. Gorgeous, Anna! I love the pattern and that style of bag looks just right for everyday living – not too fancy (because I am in jeans 98% of my life) and room for everything. Do you think it would be possible to make the bag with vinyl or leather on the bottom, rather than fabric? From experience that’s where my bags take the most wear and tear and I’d love to try making one with something more resilient underneath.

    1. Anna Graham says:

      Thank you!!! I agree, I’m not super fancy so this fits in with just about everything. Yes, for sure try vinyl or leather for the base! I think that would be perfect!

  7. Kristie says:

    I love this style! But I do have a question. How long did you make your strap? I do adore a good short strap. Thanks!

    1. Anna Graham says:

      Thanks Kristie! It’s the fixed length as noted in the pattern. 🙂 well, minus the seam allowances since it’s leather.

  8. Jeni says:

    Beautiful combo! And so many great details on this one! 🙂

    1. Anna Graham says:

      Thanks Jeni!!! It’s nice to finally swap to a new bag!

  9. hej anna, a woman cannot have enough bags ;0) this bag is so cute and well made, love this pattern! greetings from denmark Ulrike

  10. Cindy says:

    So gorgeous Anna!! Love the fabrics you chose and looks like a great length!:)

  11. Regina says:

    Love it! Do you know the weight on the denim you used? The lines are nice and crisp, no bulk at all that’s why I ask. I’m always apprehensive with denim, especially with bags. Great bag Anna!!

    1. Anna Graham says:

      Hi Regina,
      The exact denim I used is linked at the bottom of the post. It’s a very nice denim! 🙂

  12. Lori Lindhartsen says:

    You are so good at making bags! I think I have made at least 5 of your bag patterns and have loved each and everyone.

    1. Anna Graham says:

      So glad you’ve had fun making them Lori! 🙂

  13. Melissa E. says:

    This is lovely, found it on Pinterest!

    I’d never heard of Compass, but now want to try one of these with a brass compass-print liner!

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