Since then I've seen one or two crafty bloggers convert a regular purse into a similar style bag, and I've been itching to give it a try. Essentially it's just a regular purse with the strap attached to the sides of the bag instead of the top, so really the hardest part is finding a purse style that will work best on your hip.
As luck would have it, I had this small cross-body bag from Beya (which cost a whopping $10) already tucked away in my closet:
Technically you could take a bag like this and just slide the strap over your waist, but I wanted something a bit better.
First I ripped open the seams on the side buckle straps:
Next I cut two three-inch pieces off the purse strap and (messily) hand-stitched them in place on the back of the bag to form belt loops:
If you make these loops between 2.5 and 3 inches long, then you'll have the option of wearing your bag on your own belts, in addition to using the existing bag strap.
Another lucky break: I was able to put the the two square metal side pieces together to make one D-ring clasp/buckle for the bag strap:
So now I have a hip bag I can wear two ways: with the canvas strap over things like skirts or dresses, or on my own leather belts when I wear jeans.
The only issue with wearing the bag on your own belt is that it's then fairly high up on your waist, and if you tend to wear longer t-shirts it will make them ride up:
Shorter shirts are perfect with it, though, and it's not so bulky that you can't wear an over shirt with it, too, if you slide the bag forward a little more:
(Here I've got the bag loaded up with my iPhone, wallet, gum, pill case, and lip gloss. It's *just* big enough for everything I need.)
Of course you could also use the canvas strap to wear the bag lower on your hip, if you don't want it it up so high. The only issue I found there is that the bag wants to slide forward over your crotchal region as you walk, which is super annoying. I fixed this by clipping an extra long bobby pin to the strap right in front of the bag, to keep it from sliding. For a more permanent fix, you might try stitching a small square onto the strap that the bag can't slide past to keep it in place.
I'm still on the lookout for a nicer, leather bag that I can convert into a larger hip bag - maybe one I can even add a leg holster strap to, like this:
Blaster 3.0 Brown, $269 from JungleTribe
Or I'd also like to try adding two hanging straps to a small messenger bag, kind of like this:
Purse Wallet Hipbelt, $120 from stashpack
If you make the hanging straps into two big loops, then you can use your own belts *and* have the bag hang much lower on your hip.
So many fun possibilities!
Well, I hope this helps get some of your creative juices flowing! And if any of you end up modding your own hip bags, please, send me a picture - you know I wanna see!