The Ada Bag

When Kim Andersson approached me about making a bag using her amazing new Good Hair Day fabric line, I was thrilled! The fabric designs she showed me struck me as a great balance of feminine, whimsical, and polished. I knew right away I wanted to design a bag that shows some personality while still being professional and functional. With lots of pockets! I like pockets.


The Ada bag is named for Ada Lovelace, who is commonly credited with being the first computer programmer, back before computers really even existed. I’m a computer science professor in (part of) my day job, and wanted a name that’s a nod to my geeky roots, appropriate for a bag that has plenty of room for carrying a laptop and accessories of both the computer and non-computer kind! The bag has a built-in laptop sleeve that fits up to 15″ laptops, three front pockets, one back pocket, a large main body, a pocket for documents that fits behind the laptop sleeve, an interior zipper pocket, a pen holder, and a keychain.

And as I was writing up this pattern, it struck me that Ada is an appropriate name for another reason. Writing up sewing patterns has a lot in common with programming a computer: you need to be very precise, describe steps in the correct order, make it readable by other humans, test and “debug” the pattern, and much more… in essence, you’re writing a program, it’s just that it will be run by other humans!

arthurMy pattern for the Ada bag is still a rough draft, but I am very happy to share it now. In my defense, this little guy has been taking up a lot of my attention in the last four weeks (and is also the reason this post is two days late for the blog hop, sorry!).

The pattern is complete, but there may still be some “bugs” in there that need ironing out. Feedback is very welcome!

GHDcharm1For folk still reading, please leave a comment to be entered to win a lovely charm pack of Good Hair Day! You can say anything you want to enter, but I’d love to hear about moments when you feel like your day job and your hobbies have overlapped. I’ll pick a winner at the end of the day on January 24th!

Pattern: The Ada Bag.


bag photo credits: Danielle Collins

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  1. This has beautiful! Great job on this! Congrats on that adorable one, too!

  2. Fabulous bag!! Love the size. How is it possible that you designed this while having a newborn?!?

    • The design and making it came WAY before the baby. Writing up the pattern, though… good thing he spent some time sleeping the last few days!

  3. Diana S.

    You’ve created a lovely bag and I just love the fabrics you chose!

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