Sew a Little Suitcase (Tutorial Tested)

I love bags.  No, I don’t mean purses, but bags.  I like totes, bags and carry-alls.  I like their different designs, functionality, and style.  They are also one of my favorite projects to sew because you can use them right away and they don’t need be a perfect fit.

Sidekick Suitcase from

Moto Guzzi Stelvio pannier

I found this great tutorial on how to sew a sidekick suitcase, meant for a child.  It’s a 12-day sew along, and is very detailed with plenty of pictures.  Then I found the perfect customer.  My dad!  He has a new motorcycle and the sidekick suitcase would be perfect for the pannier.  He could buy the coordinating bag, but it’s awfully expensive.  Plus, the one I make will be so much better, right?

This bag was a monster of a project!  It was way beyond my pay grade.  It took me a few tries and many hours.  The first time, I wasn’t precise enough and nothing matched up.  It looked awful.  The second try went much better, but not perfect.  I cut out a lot of the detail to simplify the project.  I bought the stiffest interfacing I could find, which cost me $20.  Although, I should have used the plastic mesh the writer suggested.  I bought the strap for a buck at the dollar store; it was sold as a luggage strap and included the buckle, which the fabric stores sell for $5.

I learned that with big projects like this, you must take it slow.  Measure carefully, lay everything out, and take your time.  I also learned that the bag’s dimensions must be much smaller than the dimensions of the pannier, because when the bag is full it’ll stretch to beyond its intended size.

Dad only ended up getting on pannier, because this project was so much work.  But the result is pretty good.  The bag fits very nicely in the pannier.

Sew Sidekick Bag

Sidekick Bag


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