21 Dec 2013

Music Bag

This was my first big project. I wanted a briefcase that I could use at work. It should be able to contain a laptop and a block of paper. This meant that it could be relatively small.

I searched the web and found this beautiful bag:

It is made by ORTUS - a japanese leather company. They make extremely good looking bags  which off course costs a lot of money.

A bag with this unusual closure is referred to as a music bag. Most of these bag have a rather long and thin bar as opposed to the one from ORTUS which has a small and thick bar. The thicker bar makes the bag look more solid and less flimsy.

The bar looks like it is made of brass. I looked into making one but as i don't have access to metal working shop i though of something else.

My farther is a carpenter and has a woodturning machine and was kind enough to help be make a bar. It is made from a single piece of yew.

I pretty much copied the design of the bag. The ORTUS bag seems to have a steel bar in the bag to support the structure. I did not find this necessary so I made it without one.


I decided not to line the bag - something i regret now.

As this was my first big project I am very happy with the result. I have used it ever since and it holds up nicely.


  1. Hi there,

    I've been reading your blog for a while and I'm really impressed by your workmanship. May I know if you'll be willing to make a similar music bag as above for sale?

    Best Regards,

    1. Hi Istel, Thank you. I'm very pleased that somebody (other than my friends and family) actually reads my blog :D

      As you know I am in the process of making another briefcase which will take some time to finish.

      If you don't mind a long lead time (2-4 month) I would happily make you a bag. Do you have any special wishes for the bag? I can make almost anything so just tell me exactly what you want and I'll let you know if it is possible.

      Regarding the price I'm very cheap as I do not need much profit as this is only a hobby. So come up with a number that you think is fair and lets take it from there (I will not get offended if your offer is much lower than what I am willing to make it for)

      Also where are you from? Shipping anything from denmark is rather expensive ( around 40 euro) so that needs to be added to the cost.

      Jonas Andersen

    2. Hi Andersen,

      Thanks for the prompt response and I do understand that you're currently making another English briefcase for your friend. I wouldn't mind a 2 months lead time after payment is made from my end via paypal.

      Would you have an email address I could contact you for the pricing, location and design details?

      Best Regards,

    3. Hi, Istel

      Write to me on jonasboandersen@outlook.com

  2. Hi Anderson,

    Have sent you an email. Thanks!

  3. Amazing work! Is there any chance you would be able to send the plans/ drawings to my email address? Or post online?
    Email: jzwelch@gmail.com


    1. Hi James. Thank you. Yes I will put the pattern up within the next couple of days.