Anti Pickpocket Bag: FREE pattern, tutorial, and video sew-along

Step Three: Making the Lining of Your Handbag.

Place one side facing right side up and the other on the top right side, leaving a gap of 6″ on the side.  This is important for a later step.  Zigzag the edges.anti pickpocket bag

We will gather the bottom edge.  The following is the proper technique to gather.

Make a row of large stitches (In my machine #4 is the largest) 1/4″ from the edge.  Stop at the side seam.  Make another 1/4″ above that.

Pull the top threads and gather.  Each side should measure 13  1/2″ in lengthanti pickpocket bag

Turn the lining wrong side out and match the side seams of the lining to the bottom lining piece.  Follow the pattern for the correct placement of the center.anti pickpocket bag Sew at 5/8″ and then make another row of stitches 1/4″ from the seam.  Cut the seam allowance and zigzag.anti pickpocket baganti pickpocket bag

Step Four: Attaching The Zipper to the Facing

Fold and iron the edge of the facing at 5/8″.anti pickpocket bag

Place the zipper and pin the facing on both sides, about 1/8″ from the teeth of the zipper.  The zipper is longer than the facing and this is what we need for this technique.

anti pickpocket bagLeave 5/8″ at the beginning and at the end of the facing without sewing.  Make sure both sides are the same. anti pickpocket bag

Bend the zipper down to expose the facing.  Pin the facing and sew at 5/8″.  The pins are showing where to sew.  Do the other side.  Open the seams. anti pickpocket bag Do the other side.  You will notice the facing will have a tendency to curve.  This is expected and needed for the design.  Open the seams of the facing. anti pickpocket bag

Pin the lining to the facing, the right side of lining to the wrong side of the fabric. You know you have done it well when you open the zipper and you see in the inside right side of the lining with the pockets.  Before you proceed make sure you have the sides of the lining and the facing open.

anti pickpocket bag

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262 Responses to Anti Pickpocket Bag: FREE pattern, tutorial, and video sew-along

  1. Michele Dubois says:

    You say there is a video tutorial but I can’t find the link for that.

  2. Kathy Richardson says:

    RFID Cloth. I really like the purse and the fabric. Something to also think about now-a-days, add RFID material to keep the credit card thieves from taking your info while it is still in your bag. Thank you for sharing all you do. I love your videos and patterns and ideas. Kathy R. Church Hill, Tennessee, USA.

    • Mayra Cecilia says:

      Thank you, Kathy, thank you for letting me know. I will keep an eye out for your comments. I went to Tennesse when I was a teen studying in the USA, we took a road trip. What I loved the most was the warm, golden fields and how kind people were. One lady knitted a coat (wonderful shape) for me without even knowing me, I wore it for years. Maybe I will write about it in a post to remind me of those kind hands.

  3. Tim says:

    When you see the sides of the pockets did you then sew the top of the pocket?

  4. VB says:

    Do you have the instructions written out or just in video format? I don’t always have access to the internet and would like to have written instructions if possible.

    • Mayra Cecilia says:

      Sadly not at the moment. I can only add one file to the app at the time and of certain size. The institutions will remain free on these site for you to go back to whenever you can. Kind Regards,

  5. Sherry says:

    I am not able to get to the page to download the PDF for the anti-pickpocket bag. Can you email it to me? I would really appreciate this.


  6. Victoria Ann Sallese says:

    That was very interesring. I had no idea there is RFID fabric out there. Thank yoju

  7. Marianne says:

    I also got bag-slashed in a foreign country. I would line this bag with Kevlar fabric, and thread a 1/16”-1/8” stainless steel metal cable from the local hardware store through the handle with the end-loop hardware included internally, and connected to a thread of cable through the spine of the bag itself. This is often a feature of concealed-carry handbags. Also, making it a cross-body bag would make it harder for a thief to surprise-grab or to bump-distraction-grab. Those are the two main ways thieves operate. On important internal pockets, I’d make a zig-zag flap entry where only I know the way into the pocket, and I’d leave a booby-prize wallet with a note in it in the main pocket should they find their way into the main pocket somehow: “Sorry, you caught me on the last day of funds. If I catch you in my bag again, I will re-arrange your elbow joints. If I catch you in someone else’s bag, I will also re-arrange your elbow joints. Get a real career, because this one is hard on ALL of your joints, if you get my meaning.” Keep your bags in front if you and your backs to the walls, people. I was stolen from three times overseas in the same country, and all in aggressive, clever ways, and I considered myself pretty preventative. Most thieves use calculated techniques, it pays to study up on prevention and safe, airtight personal boundary-keeping.

  8. Bonnie says:

    Where do you get the metal rings??

  9. Mary Sue Lee says:

    When on tours in foreign lands, i carry a small cross-body bag UNDER my button-front shirt. My phone, currency, passport, etc are completely out of sight to any thief, but easy to access if i need something

  10. BonnieH says:

    I prefer a small shoulder bag worn over my shirt but UNDER a vest, sweater or jacket. Failing that, a vest or lightweight jacket with inside pocket. I know this is very limiting, but it works for me if I just carry a small wallet and cell phone.

    While a friend of mine was traveling in a foreign country, 2 jerks on motor bike buzzed past her and grabbed her purse right off her shoulder. It was hideously traumatic. Amazingly, she was not physically injured, but grossly inconvenienced.

  11. Cynthia A Burns says:

    I was wanting to know, how difficult would it be to lengthen the handles to make this a cross-body bag? I DO NOT trust over-the-shoulder bags.

  12. Sarah says:

    I just finished sewing this bag and it came out great BUT I can’t find the grommets like you used and the plastic ones from Joann’s don’t seem to work with the thickness. When I click the link for the grommets I get a message that says “unable to connect as there are too many redirects. I don’t know what that means but I can’t get to site to purchase….Please Help!

    • Mayra at So Sew Easy says:

      Hi Sarah, you must have a window blocker because I tested the link and it is working fine.

      • Sarah says:

        The link finally worked and took me to Amazon but the grommets there are not the same as the ones you had, require a tool to install and I assume are not removable and reusable. Are these the grommets you are suggesting we use?

        • Mayra at So Sew Easy says:

          HI Sarah i do have a Kam tool, and all the fittings for many sizes of grommets. If you are going to make bags I suggest to use this type of grommets, the removable ones are much more expensive and hard to find.

    • Cynthia A Burns says:

      Have you tried Hobby Lobby?

  13. Danielle S says:

    That bag is lovely and so clever. Makes me realize I really do need something to keep my information safe. Unfortunately there is no way I would ever be able to make one. Definitely not anywhere near that level. Thank you for the wonderful idea though.

  14. Marla says:

    This bag is very pretty. I think you have incorporated features to make it anti-pickpocket. My cousin had a bag similar in style and the thieves used a blade to slit open the bottom and empty her bag while she rode the bus. Needless to say, this is not a good experience. Maybe your bag will be better at keeping them away.

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