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Bum/Belt Bag Leather Workshop

Creating depth to this style of bag with side gussets makes your very own finished Bag such an adaptable item to make and use with multiple purposes.

Various Use Options

Bum Bag

Belt Bag

Shoulder Sling Bag

(remove belt) Use as a Clutch Bag, or can also attach to bicycle handle bars or back of bicycle seat.

With lots of Use options, you’ll also have even more options to cut and construct it with an inside seam construction or an outside seam construction (as shown above) which will dictate the general feel and overall look of your finished bag, and really getting you to understand, hands on, how which types of leather (tanning process) and thicknesses informs your final choice for the overall look you’re going for.

So let's look at the two main end/finished visual design characteristics.

Inside or Outside seam construction.

Outside Seam method (black colour bags in photo)

This method of making works best with a firmer feel leather within a thickness range between 1.4 to 2mm depending on its handle (how it feels)

It can also work with leathers with a soft handle as seen in the photo above which is a vegetable tanned pebble grain leather around 2mm thick. This softer leather gives the bag a less rigid look to it. But if you want a more rigid look to your finished bag, then using a leather with a firm handle to it is the way to go. The gusset seams help to give it a firmer structure.

Inside Seam method (natural colour bag in photo)

Generally you’ll be using leather with a Soft handle to it and around a 1.2 to 2mm thickness. The key factor on leather choice is, is the opening wide enough, and the leather soft enough to pull it inside out.

This style with a softer leather means the bag can be worn closer to the body or also fits nicely under outerwear.

With an Inside Seam construction you’ll be stitching the gussets with the flesh side (under side) out facing you. The grain side (top side) is not on show facing you.

Once you’ve stitched both gussets on, nows the time to ‘bag it out’ turn it inside out so the grain side is now on the outside.

As this Bum Bag is much wider than it is tall, it’s easy to bag out, even with slightly firmer leathers. If the item you make is taller than it is wide then the harder it can be to bag it out, or worst case you won’t be able to bag it out at all.

Another advantage of an inside seam construction is you don’t need to burnish your leather edges as they're not on show and can use softer thinner chrome tanned leathers with just the top edges to finish if the leather needs it.

The final choice

What type of hardware will you use to close the front flap?

The three main choices are;

a traditional buckle

a Sam Browne stud

a snap closure

and then what finish will you choose? Brass, Antiqued Brass or Nickel.

So as you can see there are quite a few options for you to make your very own Bum Bag at my Leather Workshop, to make it fit your own personal style and use.

This really is an ‘all skills’ Workshop as you’ll also make the sling belt for your bag as well.

If you'd like to learn how to make your own Leather Belt/Bum Bag you'll find a selection of dates you can book on the website by going to the 'Book Our Workshops' page.

Thanks for reading and looking forward to meeting you at the Workshop.


Richard Williamson

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