Paparazzi {camera} Bag

Today, I’m pleased to introduce you to the Paparazzi Bag PDF sewing pattern (also available on paper!)! It is available now in my pattern shop! This bag was specifically created to be a camera bag, but of course would make a great purse! I’ve seen a lot of store-bought camera bags, but most of them are messenger-style with a flap. I wanted a camera-bag that was a bit more stylish, that looked like a purse but with the functionality of a camera bag.


I am not a photographer by any means; I wanted a bag that I could take to Quilt Market that would help me organize my things better. I’m a little embarrassed to admit that I just throw my camera in a bag with all my other essentials; it’s not organized at all and it’s not fun having to shift around for what I need. The bag has outer compartments for personal items (two front flap pockets, and there is also a zippered pocket on the back of the bag), and inside is perfect for storing your camera, and there is also room for a lens and flash.

The beauty of this pattern is that there is 1/2″ foam sewn directly inside the front/back of the bag. There is also a removable padded bottom and three divider panels (also all made with 1/2″ foam). The lining of the bag has hook and loop (or velcro) with which to attach the divider panels, so they stay in place. The dividers can be moved around inside the bag to wrap snugly around your camera equipment, preventing it from being jostled around in the bag.
The thing that I found most convenient were the invisible magnetic snaps, which I used for the first time in this bag. My Sew Sweetness Purseware is now available, including invisible magnetic snaps. Some of my pattern testers used sew-in magnetic snaps from Joann’s, and for the most part these did not seem to be strong enough. There are three sets of the snaps that comprise the top closure, and there is also a set each on the front flaps. I’ve been using my bag for a few weeks now, and I love this feature. I have my cell phone in one of the front flap pockets, and it’s so convenient to reach for it (no more roaming around my bag looking for my phone), pop it out, then close. I love the tight close of the magnets and also it’s nice that once the magnets get near each other, they’re already closing.


For my bag, I used fabric from Tula Pink’s ‘Prince Charming’ line. I tried my best to fussy-cut around the frogs, especially for the front pockets, and I think I might have done too good of a job, because in some photos that I took of this bag, I could hardly make out the front pockets. I suppose this is both a good and a bad thing…in person, though, the bag is extremely striking! I always use Aurifil 40wt. thread; especially when working with layers of interfacing, I feel that it gives the layers a tighter hold and you don’t see threads on your seams (maybe you know what I mean).

Thank you so much to all of my testers who again turned in some great work! I am grateful and amazed at all the little things they catch in the pattern, so they are definitely doing a great job! Many of them finished very quickly, and I was surprised because this is a pattern with a lot going on. I had a couple of comments that although there was a lot to the pattern, it was not incredibly difficult. Most clocked the pattern skill level in at intermediate-advanced.
Carrie made this fantastic bag in fuchsia swirl! I think her bag looks fantastic, great work Carrie, I’m lovin’ this!
Joyce made this awesome version in ‘Bazaar Style’ from Art Gallery Fabrics. She did an awesome job (first one finished!), and she also wrote a review of this pattern on her blog! Check it out!
Shannon made this great version in out-of-print Amy Butler fabrics! Shannon did add the front exterior pockets to hers, but I just wanted to show the back view of her bag so you could see the beautiful fabric and zipper detail!
Penny of Pieces of Me made this really groovy bag…and look there’s some polka dots! She did a really awesome job, and the shape of the bag is perfect! Penny is always making me crack up with her funny stories, and the assembly of this bag was no different (it involves magnets, a broken Pyrex, and a refrigerator door).
Kelly made this awesome bag…another version in Art Gallery Fabrics! She did a wonderful job, and you can see how crisp and pretty the bag looks! You can check out her full review of the pattern on her blog, My Scrappy Stuff!
Marcia made her bag in a great tweed, and I just wanted to show you the inside of her bag because she did a really fantastic job…love that she was able to find a coordinating color in the hook and loop closure, and she switched out to regular magnetic snaps. And there’s some of her equipment inside! Great job Marcia!
Maria made this gorgeous version with Moda ‘Little Black Dress’ fabrics. I think it looks very posh, and the bag looks just great without front pockets too, which you can see here!
Becca from Southerners in the Great White North made this awesome version in houndstooth with eye-popping red! I also like that she split up the front pocket fabrics so that they were framed in the red as well! Great job Becca!
Dawn made this bright spring version in funky Michael Miller fabrics! I love this photo that she sent me with the exterior pockets partly open…you get a peak of the wonderful lining that she used! Great job on the bag, Dawn!!
Kelleigh made this great bag in upholstery fabric. She said that her camera bags usually take a beating, so she wanted to use something that would be really sturdy! It looks great and the green with the main fabric is just gorgeous!
Erin made her bag in Ikea fabric, and I just absolutely had to show the back of her bag because I am in love with what she’s done…and love the black solid with it. Isn’t her bag amazing?!
Jane made her bag in some graphic bird and heart fabrics. I think it’s totally cute! You can see that the pockets are very evenly placed, and she did a great job in overall construction…I also love the stripes on the top band and straps!
Kimi made this great bag in Kawaii fabrics, with Pearl Bracelets on the top band and straps. If I recall correctly, the first bag Kimi ever made was my free Red Poppy Bag pattern, and you can tell that she is ever-fearless in completing this one as well! Go Kimi!!
Natasha of House Full of Nicholes made this super awesome neuitral bag. I absolutely love the print, and the gray really makes it pop! Wonderful job, and those pockets look perfect!!
Debbie made this bag with a great pop of color on the top band and straps! The front pockets look beautiful, well done Debbie!
Sharon made this awesome bag and you can see by her contrasting fabrics that her pockets clearly stand out (as opposed to my hidden-frog ones, lol!). I love that she mixed all these prints, and the bag looks gorgeous!
Chelsey made this great version and she had the great idea to make the pocket side panels and flaps a different fabric from the actual pockets…super idea! I really love what she’s done with this one!
Thank you again to everyone that tested for me! If you liked what you saw, the pattern is available right now in my pattern shop. I’m really excited about my bag, which can be clearly seen by the fact that I’m actually using it (I seldom change out bags…I get really comfortable with one and use it for at least 6 months or more. Makes for a lot of bags laying around at my house, haha).

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