This is my take on an anti-pickpocket bag made of fabric with twisted handles. I'm calling it Helsinki and here's the backstory to this design:
As many of our regular readers know, I was recently away on vacation with my family. During the break, we managed to visit the Bernina factory in Switzerland, call in on what I'll argue is the finest fabric shop in the world in Italy, and as a final stop, we went in search of the famous design house, Marimekko, in Finland –all of which I'll be writing about in the near future.
In any case, while we were in Finland, in supposedly one of the safest cities in the world, my teenage daughter was pickpocketed and lost her very, very expensive new iPhone. Needless-to-say, her father was none too happy about this. The small handbag she was carrying was relatively open and the thieves just brushed up against her and it was gone. Poof! We were in a department store and the security cameras got it all on video, but it happened so fast and the perpetrators were gone by the time the tapes were reviewed.
It got me thinking that this can't be a rare occurrence and that I should design an anti-pickpocket bag with internal pockets, secure zippers, and strong straps to keep this thing from happening again. I started designing and as soon as I got home, put this new bag together. I think you'll find it an easy project to follow and the bag will not only be an attractive addition to your wardrobe but also super functional if you're traveling or spending time in crowded places. The twisted fabric handles are relatively unique and very strong. So Helsinki, this one is for you..
Skill Level: Advanced
If you have made a nag with lining and pockets, this project is easy for you to accomplish. If you, however, have never done a bag before, you will find this difficult.
- Secure main zipper with no gaps around the gusset making it is hard for a thief to access.
- Zippered inner pockets for money and valuables.
- Strong twisted fabric handles that will let you hold the bag securely.
- Complete video tutorial and sew-along (links at the end of the article)
- Dimensions 17″ by 11″
Materials for the Anti Pickpocket Bag
- 1 x 20″ zipper
- 2 x 8″ zippers
- 1 yard of fabric, quilting cotton or cotton canvas 60″
- 1 yard of lightweight fusible interfacing
- 1 yard of fleece
- 1 rectangle 10″x 6″ of thick sewable interfacing
- 1/2 yard of lining 60″
- 4 large metal grommets, 1.5″ hole diameter
- 4 x 1 1/4″ metal rings with spring
- Glue E6000
- 1 zipper foot
- serger (optional)
Recommended Fabric Options
Here are some suggestions for potential fabric options.
See the entire sewing tutorial series here:
See next page for free pattern download.