DIY: Mansur Gavriel Bucket Bag

Bucket bags... if you haven't seen them yet prepare to see them real soon. The Mansur Gavriel bucket bag was heralded as "the first it bag since the recession" for its sleek, simple, and structured reinvention of a silhouette that has been around for quite some time. The main difference? I'm going with the use of firm leather (vegan leather for the MG version) instead of softer leather in past iterations, which upgraded what basically could have been called a leather reusable shopping bag into a chic cross-body gathered up in a bow. I first heard of this bag when the sound of my coworkers oohing and aahing floated from a nearby computer, but feeling a bit adventurous I didn't think about my credit card. Instead, I thought about my sewing machine. Leather is a totally new territory for me, but this is what I made!

I went with a grey saffiano leather, saffiano meaning it is treated leather with a cross-hatch pattern. I completely respect that the MG version is vegan leather, but that's just not an option for me since it's difficult for me to find the same quality material nor do I know how they bond the inner and outer layers together to create the contrasting colour. Having a much more everyday set of tools, I skipped on the contrasting interior and adjustable strap. Mine is therefore the suede of the leather on the inside and I sized the strap to fit me and left it at that.

Here are the steps and the video tutorial for you.

1. Cut out two pieces of leather for the two halves of the bag
Overall is 16.5" wide, 15.75" tall
Bottom slits are 3.5" from the sides and go 3.5" deep
The bottom edge between the slits is 10" wide
2. Fold the two square flaps inwards at 90 degrees to the bag and clip in place
3. Sew the square flaps down with a machine along the diagonal of the bottom
4. Repeat for both halves of the bag
5. Hand sew the two halves of the bag together along the spine
(use a strong needle and push with something hard instead of your fingers to avoid getting hurt. Some patience is needed, this is a good time to watch a show or video while working)
6. Cut out 6 holes on each side of the bag using an exacto knife
Approximately 2.25" apart, and 0.5" diameter
7. Cut a drawstring that is 36" long, 0.5" wide
8. Cut a strap that is 45" long, 0.75" wide
9. Hang the strap over your shoulder and cut it to the desired length, typically a good fit is for the bag to cover your butt
10. Round out the corners on the ends of the drawstring and strap with scissors
11. Sew a straight stitch down the middle of the drawstring from one end to the other
12. Sew a straight stitch along the outer edge of the strap all the way around
(the stitching just makes it look nicer)
13. Hand sew the strap to the two sides of the bag, again be careful so you dont get hurt!
14. Weave the drawstring through the holes and tie a bow with the loose ends

I brought this bag with me during Toronto Fashion Week earlier this year and it held my gear all day. Now I'm thinking about whether I should make the smaller sizes that MG also has...


Sheer Sweater: Thrifted
White Jeans: Thrifted
Espadrille Loafers: Club Monaco


Allure of Simplicity