shoulder-vest1SHOULDER VEST

The Commuter Bandolier is a comfortable easy-to-wear shoulder vest and can totally tote your possessions in its pouches as you go about your daily routine. Cheerfully strap it on, head out into the world, and start a culture-wide fashion trend.

You will need:

  • 1 yd. [0.90 m] of fashion fabric, 45″[114 cm] wide
  • 1/3 yd. [0.30 m] of pocketing, 45″ [114 cm] wide
  • 2/3 yd. [0.60 m] of fusible interfacing, 45″ [144cm] wide
  • Coordinating thread
  • 2 nylon pocket zippers, 10″ [25 cm] long
  • ¼ yd. [23 cm] of Velcro® fastener, ½” [1.25 cm] wide
  • kraft paper


bag-2Dimensions are given in inches (imperial). **

NOTE: Length and width measurements may be adjusted by slashing through the RED lines and increasing or decreasing the amount needed in proportion.

** Add seam allowances to all pattern pieces.


bag-layout1Cut each pattern piece 2X in fashion fabric.

Cut each pattern piece 1X in fusible interfacing.

(flip pattern)

Cut each pocket piece 2X in pocketing.

Cut interfacing 1″ X 11″ [2.5cm X 28 cm] for each zipper opening.

Cut 1 Velcro hook side – 7″ [18 cm] long.

Cut 3 Velcro loop side – 3″ [7.5 cm] long.


  1. Iron fusible interfacing to the wrong side of the INNER FACING pieces of the vest, following the manufacturer’s directions.
  2. On the OUTER pieces of the shoulder harness and right front piece, center and fuse interfacing to the wrong side of the fabric at the zipper placement.
  3. With right sides together (RST), match the upper pocket piece to the zipper placement on the shoulder harness. Baste in place. Stitch the outline of the pocket opening 10″ [25 cm] long X ½” [1.25 cm] wide, pivoting at the corners.
  4. Slash through center of outlined stitching and cut diagonally into the corners. Pull pocket lining through opening to wrong side of shoulder harness. This opening should form a perfect rectangle. Roll edges of opening between your fingers until each seam is at the edge of the opening. Press so that none of the lining shows on the outside.
  5. Center the zipper with the slider pointing upward behind the opening and baste in place.
  6. Topstitch around the pocket opening to secure the zipper.
  7. Match the remaining pocket lining piece to the upper pocket lining and align raw edges. Pin/baste the perimeter and sew up the pocket bag.
  8. Baste vertical seams of pocket bag to shoulder harness.
  9. Repeat inset zipper application to pocket opening on right front piece, as described above.
  10. Match front and back of shoulder harness with RST. Pin/baste long edges together. Sew seams, catching the pocket bag in the stitching. Turn shoulder harness right side out and press seams flat. Topstitch along the long edges.
  11. Match the vertical seams of the OUTER pieces of the “belt” portion of the vest. Pin/baste each seam and machine-stitch. Press seams open.
  12. Repeat last procedure for the vertical seams of the interfaced INNER pieces of the “belt” portion of the vest.
  13. Position the Velcro® hook vertically 1″ [2.5cm] from raw edge along the right front edge on the INNER portion (allow for seam allowance) with the right side UP. Stitch in place.
  14. Baste shoulder harness to OUTER portion on front and back along top edge, matching up RED dots.
  15. Pin/baste INNER and OUTER “belt” sections with RST and match up seams. Beginning at the center of the bottom edge, sew around the perimeter and pivot at the corners, leaving a 6″ [15cm] opening to turn out. Be certain to catch pocket bag in the stitching. Grade seam allowances and trim corners.
  16. Turn vest right side out and press edges flat. Topstitch around the perimeter to close opening.
  17. On left front, position 3 Velcro® loops horizontally and equally spaced approximately ¼” [0.5 cm] from the front edge on the OUTER section with the right side UP. Stitch in place through all layers.