Made by me / My makes

A tote named Vanja

Vanja tote bag corduroy

The Vanja bag in corduroy

This is the Vanja bag. The story behind her is that I mistakenly ordered some wide wale corduroy off Ebay earlier this year. It was too wide for the pants that I had in mind and thus the fabric has remained untouched in my stash. But a couple of weeks ago I suddenly got the idea to make totes out of the fabric instead. So I drafted a very rough sketch in my note book during a break in a table tennis match that I was covering. I wanted to come up with some kind of a “signature” tote, i.e. a design template that can generate many different versions. The corduroy version in the picture will be a gift to a friend who, like me, loves corduroy.

In the future I plan to make more variations of the Vanja bag, perhaps by using details like colour blocking and top stitching. I think a blue and white navy inspired version would look really nice for instance.

Vanja tote bag corduroy

The lining is made of cotton curtains that I found in a sales bin. Also there is a little pocket inside for things like wallet, cell phone and keys.

Vanja tote bag corduroy

I used magnetic snaps for closure so one doesn’t have to fiddle with a buttonhole when closing the lid. The wooden button on top is purely for decoration purpose.


  • luckylibbet
    November 11, 2008 at 4:06 am

    FABULOUS! The corduroy makes it special. I have wide wale corduroy on hand – meant for pants but too wide a wale – will it work for this?

  • Johanna Lu
    November 12, 2008 at 10:22 am

    Luckylibbet >> I think wide wale corduroy is perfect for bags. To be honest I think it looks better on bags and home dec than on clothes, although I've seen car coats and parkas jackets made in wide wale corduroy that looked pretty cool.


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