The wet, wet Northwest winter gave me an idea -- I could transform the sleeve from an old raincoat or jacket into a weather-proof bag. At a local thrift store I found this well-made (but stained) jacket, originally from the Gap.
A bonus was the pocket on the left sleeve -- just the right size for my cell phone. My first step was too cut off the sleeve and see if my bulky mat would actually fit inside.
Then I put one sleeve inside the other, wrong sides together, and sewed.
I think the diagonal line looks more dynamic than the horizontal one that would have resulted if I'd cut the sleeves straight across. (Or maybe I'm just rationalizing?)
Next, I turned to the top and bottom. When I pushed my mat inside, I had trouble getting it past the top opening. So I ripped open the side seam about 3 inches down, widening the diameter. To finish the opening, I folded over the top about 1 1/2" and made a casing. I threaded the cord from the original jacket through the casing and added a closure.
I wasn't sure what to do at the bottom. If I simply sewed it closed, the end would be too narrow for the mat. Instead, I sewed a cuff back on. It isn't pretty, but it works.
The last step was adding a carrying strap. I used 2 straps from the neck of the original jacket and some black plastic hooks I had on hand.
I sewed them to the bag about 6" from each end. In my stash I found an nylon strap from an old camera bag and attached it to the hooks. Voila!
The bag is easy to carry and fairly fashionable. Only one thing bothers me -- the reverse side of nylon fabric is tacky and tends go stick to the mat. The last thing I need after a yoga class is an angry struggle with my bag! I may try again, this time with a very slick fabric.