BDU bag tutorial

Hey everyone! While we’re all anxiously awaiting the PR&P results from last week (no? just me? Am I the only one biting my nails over this?) I’ve decided to do a quick tutorial on how to make the one-shoulder BDU bag.

To make this bag you will need:
A jeans needle (trust me on this!)
A BDU top or any heavy-duty work shirt
1 yard of nylon webbing
Cut through both layers of the top so you have two pieces. I used the left side of the BDU top but I could have easily used the other side with the name tag on it and just reversed everything. I really just didn’t want his name all over the internet 😉


Cut off the bottom right corner. Now you have two diagonal cuts where the strap will go.
Then I serged the top of both pieces (you could also zig zag it if you don’t have a serger). I could have just serged all the way around but for some reason I didn’t, so let’s just pretend I did. Fold down the top of each piece and press it (towards the inside), then sew in the velcro.

Now you need to cut two strips for the shoulder strap. Mine were 3 inches wide. I used the sleeve. I used every inch available on the top and the strap fits around my 8-year-old perfectly. You may need to use more or less depending on the size of the recipient of the bag.
photo-10Sew the two strips into a tube and press. Now you have a strap! Lay the back piece of the bag right side up and pin one end of the strap on the top diagonal, pin the other end of the strap to the bottom diagonal. Now pin the front piece of the bag on top, right side in (like a bag sandwich). Sew all around the bag except for the part where you sewed the velcro.

You could stop there, but to make it more functional we’re going to add some nylon webbing. First fold the end over and sew it down right where the strap and bag meet.
Then decide what you want to fit in the nylon ‘pockets’ and put it where you want it to go. For example I chose a water bottle. I pinned it on both sides so it was very snug, then I sewed the nylon webbing down where the pins were.
A small pocket for sunglasses 🙂 When you’ve added all the little ‘pockets’ you want sew the other end of the nylon webbing to the other end of the strap.
Now give it to a special little man in your life…
And watch his eyes light up!

3 thoughts on “BDU bag tutorial

  1. Ohhh this is fantastic! My boyfriend is always sending me his ‘castoffs’ and leftover ammo bags…they’re such fun utilitarian materials to work with. LOVE this bag

  2. I want to make a messenger bag (the size of a purse, not as big as a messenger backpack) out of my brothers Air Force camo.. Do you have any tips or patterns on how to do it?

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