A new case

I am not sure how accurate the title is but it is just a title.

The idea is for a pen case that looks like a handbag or even a handbag that holds fountain pens. I might add a pocket for a mobile phone and notebook.

The first thing I need is a template for the inside this one also has sides and a base



I think the ends may be better rounded rather than angled like this. I see the end view as a triangular shape.

This is the type of pen slots I intend to use but they will be on the outside of the slope and there will be a lot less maybe five each side.


I will try  rounded corners on the next effort

And like magic here it is






This is a little larger that I had hoped the base is 100 mm wide and it currently stands around 180 mm high. I would like to reduce the height to 160 mm high and get the width to 60 mm but with an taper towards the top down to either 20 mm or 30 mm.

I can see what I want in my mind but I cant explain it very well I think they call it a clamshell bag and it has long handles.

I decided to pull the last model apart as it was not what I was trying to make. This is all that is left.


My next thought was that it could sit on a base like this.



At this point my thoughts were becoming more clear as to the final bag so I started looking at the base.



I made a length of piping to wrap around the base I plan to move the join on to one of the long sides. The base, sides, piping will all be sewn in together.

Back to the inner support for the pen slots. here is my replacement the other one I am keeping for another project. This one has a finer taper and very small rounded corners.


I have also cut the first lining piece for the inside as you can see I have punched two holes for the phone pocket and made a cut to join them together the holes will stop the cut from extending past the holes.


I added some pink leather to the back of the phone pocket and stitched it in place.


This pices of leather will form the backing of the pen slots rather than marking the front of the leather I cut this piece wider than required and used a piece of thread to give two guide lines to help me keep everything in line.


Here is the starting point for the pen slots the first edge was glued in place to start with  after I started sewing I released the first edge. I will sew the two outer edges in final assembly.


As it turns out seven oversize pens will fit easily in this case I need to decide if I am going to make more pen slots on the other side or make a pocket for a notebook.


Sorry for the apparent change in colour it took a long time to sew the pen slots in place and it was dark by the time I had finished.


Here is the base section built around a piece of card like the one above the inner section will be attached to this second piece of card which will then be glued securely to its twin.

I have tacked the base and the piping using black thread to align the holes when the time comes to attach the outer cover it will be done inside out.


I decided eventually to make a second set of pen slots on the other side.


I left the four outer ends loose so I could position the piece in place before fixing it in place which was very lucky but I will come back to that later. As you can see I used a piece of dowel as usual to line up the slots. if you ever use this method remember to switch the long dowel for a short length before sewing the ends closed or you may have to cut the dowel to get it out 🙂

After some gluing and stretching it turned out that I only needed six pen slots rather than seven this is where the luck came into it if I had sewn all of the ends the pen slot section would have been far too large.


Once the glue had set I glued the pen slots and their support to the other base I had cut




Now that I have all of the dimensions I can finish the outer section of this bag / case.


When test fitting the inside of the outer cover I noticed the untidy edges of the cream leather where it met the pink insert.


I think it looks a little better like this.

There appeared to be a line around the webbing of the zip which I followed when gluing the leather to the zip.


Here are all of the components together for the first time I have sewn around the edges of the zip on both sides. The handles have also been sewn in place.

I am a little unhappy about the inside of the handles as the joint is clearly visible I may add some pink leather here


The phone pocket in detail


This is the issue I had with the handles there were a few small gaps where the two edges did not meet when I folded the leather to form the handles.


My solution was to cut some strips of thin pink leather and line the inside of the handles


I used a bone folder to make the creases before adding glue and folding.  To help to avoid lots of joints in the thread I stopped sewing 17 holes from the end and used the same thread to attach the lining and also the handle to the bag.


Finally back to where I started this morning but with both handles re attached


Once I was happy with the handles I made two little covers to hide the joint and after fitting them I glued the inner and outer covers together in preparation for fitting the base. I used the two pieces that covered the joins as my guide for fitting the base having turned the cover inside out I marked a line between the covers. once I had this line I made another line 10 mm down from the first line and transferred a stitch hole from the base. using that mark I punched stitching holes all around from there I sewed all around.


This picture shows the half way point I used a single piece of thread to sew the base in place but I did tack both sides to hold it in place.


This is the base sewn in place


here is the bag with the base sewn in place the inner cover does not go all of the way down as the bottom has to fold over when the bag is turned the right way around.


The inside of the freshly turned bag I added some glue to the fold area before turning the bag the right way around as I wanted a sharp crease.

After this I glued and fitted the pen slots in place this was a little tricky but I got there in the end.

So here is the finished bag.




My original idea was to make a bag that a Lady would be happy to carry but would also carry a number of fountain pens safely.

Was I successful well as I am a man it is hard to say 🙂



2 thoughts on “A new case

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