I have been looking for the perfect shopping handbag. After a lot of research, I now realize there is no such thing. Unless you want to walk around with a safety deposit box as a handbag, there is not a completely secure handbag. However, there are certainly a lot of things we can do to make our handbags safer, more secure and functional. I took some of the ideas from our last bag, the Anti Pickpocket Bag, added a few details from your comments and came up with this new shopping handbag that I'm naming Gleam.
I have added RFID shielding fabric and made the bottom stronger. I have kept the handles the same and added a removable pouch big enough for a camera. The zippered internal pockets are hard for pickpockets to get to because they are hidden under the facing. I am using a strong cotton fabric from Marimekko's latest collection and added some rhinestones for bling.
In the last project, I told you about my daughter being pickpocketed while we were on vacation and after being left with a $1,000 in roaming charges to Uruguay in addition to the lost iPhone, I was annoyed and determined to make a bag that can secure not only a phone and wallet, but also guard my electronic information as well. Electronic pickpocketing is a growing problem in crowded places like shopping malls, concerts, public transportation and airports. This new bag has two layers of RFID shielding fabric attached to the main fabric pieces as well as inserted as lining and making up the inner pockets. My own tests have shown that this is the minimum amount required to stop the electronic reader's ability to get the information from my card.
- RFID shielding fabric to protect from electronic pickpocketing.
- Hidden zippered inner pockets for money and valuables.
- Strong twisted fabric handles that will let you hold the bag securely.
- Removable zippered pouch.
- Heavy weight cotton to 1 1/2 yard (I used a print from Marimekko)
- RFID shielded fabric Two (2) linear feet x 59 inch wide (see below)
- Felted wool 1/2 yard (or vinyl)
- Steam-A-Seam 1.5 yard (I love this stuff..)
- Thin fusible interfacing
- Twelve (12) 1/2″ grommets or large eyelets
- Four (4) rings with spring
- Fabric glue/Fast Tak or Easy Tak
- One (1) yard 1/2″ bias tape
- Sew-in 10mm flat back rhinestones
- Two (2) 8″ zippers
- One (1) 14″ zipper
- One (1) metal ring 3/4″ to 1″ in diameter
- Two (2) small lobster claws
About RFID Shielding Fabric
This RFID shielding fabric is silver in color because it uses conductive metals, in this case silver, woven into and coated on the fabric. This metal creates a mesh that conducts the electricity or electromagnetic radiation around your bag or wallet, rather than into it, thus preventing your cards from being read by a thief with a common RFID scanner. The concept is pretty simple if you remember from your high school physics class, the concept of a Faraday cage, where a mesh of wires can shield a person even from lightning. Click on the image or HERE for more info on where to purchase this kind of fabric. You will need two linear feet to do all the double lining detailed in this tutorial. You could do a single layer with one linear foot of fabric which would provide some protection.
RFID stands for Radio-frequency identification which is a very popular technology that uses electromagnetic fields to automatically read, identify and track tags containing electronically stored information. These tags are very common now and you will find them in almost all credit cards, passports, student and employee IDs.
See next page for free pattern download.