Peg Bag Pattern – Free Bag Tutorial

Peg bag pattern

Peg bag pattern

This peg bag pattern is easy to make and I feel that it is another project for those who wish to craft for charity or Christmas stalls.  Or to make for yourself, of course!  It can be used as a peg bag for hanging out your washing or it can be hung from a hanger to hold your socks or tights.  The bag is very approximately 11″ wide by 11″ long.

I’ve seen peg bags with applique washing lines and clothes on them, but I have gone for a much simpler strip of lace around the neckline.  It is intended to look like a small dress – but with a very large neckline so that you can easily pull out pegs or socks from within the bag.  Lace is also a great way of covering imperfections in the neckline!

To buy the kit click on peg bag kit.




Cutting requirements for the peg bag pattern

I have used a 13″ strip cut across the width of fabric for the outer fabric and the lining fabric.  In addition you will need about 28″ of lace.  Cut one of each template in outer fabric and one of each in the lining fabric.  You will also need two strips about 1″ by 9″ in the lining fabric for the tapes.

Click here for the peg bag front template

Click here for the peg bag back template

Pin the template to the fabric

Pin the template to the fabric

Cut the fabric

Lay your strip of fabric out across the length and fold back about 13″ at the end so that you have two layers of fabric for that 13″ stretch.  Pin one of the templates in place with the right hand edge of the template lined up with the fold in the fabric.

Cut one in the outer fabric (the sky fabric) and one in the lining fabric (Liberty Art fabric).

Make a new fold for the 2nd template

Make a new fold for the 2nd template

Fold the strip of fabric over by 13″ again to create a new fold and pin the other template to it, again matching the right hand edge of the template with the fold line.

From the scraps of the lining fabric cut two strips about 1″ by 9″ for the tapes.

Sew the outer front and back together

Sew the outer front and back together

Assemble the peg bag

Place the two sections of outer fabric (back and front of bag) with right sides together.  Sew from the edge of the neckline across the shoulder, down each side, across the bottom and up the other side.  This creates a pouch.

Repeat with the lining fabric but this time sew across the shoulders and down the sides only – do not sew across the bottom of the bag lining.  This creates a tube.

Clip into the seams

Clip into the seams

Clip the corners where the fabric sticks out and clip into the seam on the inward curve of the seams.

This will help to make the bag lie flat when you turn the sections right side out.

Turn the outer bag right side out but leave the lining bag wrong side out.

Make the tape

Make the tape

Sew the two tapes

Lay the strips for the tapes with right side down.  Fold the edges in to the middle along the length.  Then fold the strip in half along the length so that the raw edges are completely concealed.  Sew along the strip to hold in place.  One end of each tape will be concealed within the seams.  I usually tie a simple knot in the other end to prevent fraying.

Pin the tapes in place

Pin the tapes in place

Lay the tapes on the neckline of the lining fabric about 2″ either side of the central point.  One end of each tape will lie on the neckline while the other end lies down the back of the section.

Pull the lining over the outer bag

Pull the lining over the outer bag

Join the two sections of the peg bag pattern

Pull the bag lining down over the top of the outer section, matching the neckline particularly.  The tapes are now lying between the two bag sections.

Sew around the complete neckline so that the two bag sections are joined together.  I found the two shoulder sections a bit fiddly to sew – just where the back and front pieces are joined.  You need to sew these bits slowly so that you can ease the fabric as you go.  Don’t forget that the lace will cover the occasional bump in the fabric – although I’m sure that you are a more careful sewer than I am so you won’t have any bumps!

Pull the lining up

Pull the lining up

Pull the lining bag up over the top of the bag sections so that you can sew the hemline of this section.

Sew the hemline

Sew the hemline

Turn under the two edges to make a small seam along the hemline and sew this in place.

Push the lining back inside the outer bag, pushing into the corners of the sleeves and hemlines to make a good fit.

Topstitch the neckline

Topstitch the neckline

Pin around the neckline and sew a line of topstitching to keep the two layers in place.

Sew lace around the neckline

Sew lace around the neckline

Add the lace

That’s the peg bag pattern complete apart from the embellishment.  For this I have used lace for three reasons:  it looks like clouds on the sky fabric, looks like a pretty collar on the dress shape and hides any imperfections in the neckline.

The lace is sewn on by hand.  I began at the back of the neckline to hide the join of the two ends, although in fact the lace is easy enough to join so the join doesn’t really show up anyway.

Peg bag on the line

Peg bag on the line

You can see the peg bag pattern in action here with the tapes used to tie it to the washing line.

I hope that you’ll find this a useful pattern whether you make it for yourself or for your charity sewing.

Here’s the video:

Portmeirion village

Portmeirion village

Last week I promised you a little more on my Welsh trip.  One of the highlights of the trip was a look around Portmeirion.  This is an extraordinary village built on a peninsular in North Wales.

The architect, Sir Clough Williams-Ellis, wanted to show that beautiful buildings could be built to highlight the natural landscape.  He was heavily influenced by Italian architecture and the result is a gorgeous village – although I wouldn’t want to live there and have to cope with all the hordes of tourists!

The Prisoner

The Prisoner

The village has been used in countless films and TV programmes.  Perhaps the most famous of these was The Prisoner, filmed in the 1960’s.  You can get the feeling of this looking through the bars on to the river.

 

Hint of Colour Clutch Bag Pattern

Hint of colour clutch bag

Hint of colour clutch bag

I’ve made the Hint of Colour clutch bag using a technique that I think gives a gorgeous bag.  I’ve made it in various different styles before, but the clutch bag is probably the easiest of bag designs to show you the technique.  This purse measures approximately 8.1/2″ by 6.1/2″ and you can buy it as a kit here.

I’ve used 3/4 yard of pink fabric and 1/2 yard of black.  The pink is an Ebor fabric going by the delightful name of Sangria.  For the black I have used cotton canvas, slightly stronger than normal quilting cotton but just as easy to use.




Cutting requirements for the hint of colour clutch bag

It is actually best to make two of these at a time to save fabric wastage.

1.1/2″ strips:  nine pink, ten black

9″ by 20″ rectangles:  one pink and one wadding for each bag

One button and about 6″ of ribbon for each bag.

Sew the strips together

Sew the strips together

Make the striped panel

Sew the strips of black and pink fabric together along the length, beginning and ending with black.  Press the seam allowances all in one direction.

This is not only the easiest way to press them, but also makes the sewing much easier as well.

Cut this panel into two 20″ lengths.  You actually only need one of these 20″ lengths for one hint of colour clutch bag, but if you make a second purse at the same time then you can use up all the fabric strips.  The instructions following are for one bag only from now on.

Form the pleats

Form the pleats

Form the pleats

Place the panel with the stripes running vertically.  Working from right to left, grip the pink/black seam and pull it across to the next black stripe.

Pull the black across the pink

Pull the black across the pink

With your left hand, gently push the pink to make sure that it is lying flat.  Pin the pleat in place.  Continue down each stripe.

Pleat across all the pink stripes

Pleat across all the pink stripes

Basically you are folding the black stripes across the pink stripes so that only black shows on the top side of the panel.

You will need to form nine pleats, one to cover each pink stripe.

Sew a zigzag stitch just inside the top and the bottom edges to hold the pleats in place.  You need to sew from the right edge to the left edge so that you are following the folds of the pleats.  Otherwise you might find your sewing machine foot pushing against the pleats as you sew.

Zigzag lines across the middle

Zigzag line across the middle

Zigzag line across the middle

Here I have a slight problem because I had started out planning a larger bag.  For this I had planned one fold in the pleated panel, with a pink square added at the bottom to form the third section of the clutch bag.

However this gave me a bag that was too deep and didn’t look right.  I decided to fold the pleated panel twice and forget about the extra pink square.  Unfortunately the video and my photos had already been taken with a line of zigzag stitching across the middle.

What I should have done is added a line of zigzag 7″ from the bottom and a further line 14″ from the bottom.  This holds the pleats in place along the lines where the panel will be folded.  You will then have two sections of 7″ for the pouch of the bag and one of 6″ for the flap.

Press the pleats with a steam iron, removing the pins as you go.

Layer the bag sections

Layer the bag sections

Add the lining and wadding

Measure the width of your pleated panel.  In theory it should be 10.1/2″, but in fact mine was 9″.  This is because you lose a little width with all the folds in the pleating.  Cut a rectangle of wadding and pink fabric to your final measurements – 9″ by 20″ in my case.

Lay the wadding down first with the pink rectangle on top of it, right side up.  Place the pleated panel on top with right side down, so that the pink and the pleats are right sides together.

Leave a gap in the seam

Leave a gap in the seam

Sew around three and a half sides, leaving a gap to turn the bag right side out.  I have left the gap in the middle of one of the long edges.  It is easier to slipstitch the gap closed along a black strip rather than across the pleats in the short ends.

Trim the seam allowances and clip across the corners to reduce bulk in the corners.

Slipstitch across the gap

Slipstitch across the gap

Push the bag through the gap to turn it right side out.  Turn under a small hem across the gap and slipstitch in place.  Press.

Slipstitch the two edges

Slipstitch the two edges

Fold the sections

Fold the bag across the 7″ line to create the pouch of the hint of colour clutch bag.

Sew the two edges together on each side.  I tried to use my machine but there was too much bulk so I hand stitched the seam.

Fold the flap down

Fold the flap down

Fold the flap down over the pouch of the bag.  It should finish about 1″ above the bottom of the bag.  This is intentional so that there is room for a fastener.  I have used a button on the flap with a ribbon loop beneath it on the pouch.

The beauty of this bag is that it’s simple to make and just hints of colour show through the black, particularly when you have something in the bag.  You can use any colour combinations to match an outfit, but I think that you do need to have a good contrast between the fabrics for it to be effective.

You might be interested in other bag patterns on my free bag patterns page.

Here’s the video:

Thank you so much for all the comments and emails that I received with regard to my addition of small projects to the weekly emails.  I hope that this pattern has proved to be helpful to you.  It certainly could be made for a Christmas gift, which I know many of you are looking for.

Chateau Impney

Chateau Impney

And I haven’t forsaken the travel section!  The photo this week is of a hotel called Chateau Impney.  The building has a fairytale castle look to it and it is set in beautiful parkland.

I have admired it from afar for many years so I was delighted when a friend offered to take me there to have a look around.  We thought that we would have a coffee and then a walk in the parkland.  Unfortunately nobody seemed interested in serving us coffee so we had to make do with just the walk in the park bit – but it was lovely to have seen the chateau from close up after all these years of admiring it from a distance.

 

Tote Bag with Gusset – Free Pattern

Tote bag with gusset

Tote bag with gusset

For this tote bag with gusset I have created the gusset through folding rather than by sewing an extra panel into the bag.  It is quick and easy to make and the gusset is perfectly adequate for making the bottom of the bag that bit flatter, so that a bottle would stand upright more easily in it.

Cutting requirements for the tote bag with gusset

Closer view of the bottom corner

Closer view of the bottom corner

Outer bag:  two 18″ squares.  I have used two different fabrics for this

Bag lining:  two 18″ squares.  Again, I have used two different fabrics here

Straps:  two 2.1/2″ strips cut across the width of fabric.  I have used one strip each of the two outer bag fabrics

Facing:  one 2.1/2″ strip. This shows at the top of the bag so it needs to be in a co ordinating fabric.




Mark a line on the bottom corner

Mark a line on the bottom corner

Making the outer bag

With right sides together, sew the two squares together on three sides – these will be the sides and the bottom of the tote bag.

On one side seam, mark a line 1″ from the bottom seam and extending 1″ from the side seam.  Do this to both sides of the bag.  Note that the two squares are still right sides together at this stage.

Form a triangle with the marked line as the base

Form a triangle with the marked line as the base

Pull the two squares apart from each other at the bottom corner.  You need to form a triangle with the marked line running along the base of the triangle and the seam line running up the middle of the triangle.  The corner of the bag will be the top of the triangle.  One half of the triangle will be the back fabric of the bag (black in the photo) and the other half will be the front (hot air balloon fabric).  Sew a seam along the base of the triangle.

Fold the triangle along the bottom seam line

Fold the triangle along the bottom seam line

Fold the triangle down so that the triangle runs along the bottom seam of the bag.  Slipstitch the top of the triangle to the seam allowance.  This is only to hold it in place – it doesn’t need to be strong. Do this to both bottom corners of the tote bag.

Now you can turn the outer bag right side out.

Make a gusset in the lining

Make a gusset in the lining

Making the bag lining

This is basically the same as making the outer bag.  Once again I have used two different fabrics in the hope that the photos will be more clear.  Sew the two squares together on three sides, mark a line for the gusset, sew along the line and slipstitch the top of the triangle in place.  The lining fabrics are still right sides together at this stage.

Make the bag straps

Make the bag straps

Making the tote bag straps

With right sides together, sew the two 2.1/2″ strips together on each side to form a tube.  Cut the tube in half so that you have two tubes about 20″ long.  Fold the top of the strap back along the strap so that you can turn it right side out.  Press and then sew a seam 1/4″ from either side to hold the fabrics in place.

Assembling the tote bag with gusset

Pin the straps to the outer bag

Pin the straps to the outer bag

Now you just have to put it all together!

Turn the outer bag so that it’s right side out.  Leave the lining so that it’s right sides together.  Tuck the lining into the outer bag and line up the two fabrics around the top of the bag.

Pin one strap to the front of the bag and one to the back of the bag, making sure that you only catch the two layers of fabric with each strap.  Sew all round the top of the bag to secure the outer bag, lining and straps in place.

Add the facing

Add the facing

Add the facing to the bag

Measure the length around the top of the bag.  In my case it was 35″.  Take the facing strip and cut a length 1/2″ longer (35.1/2″ for my bag).  Sew the two ends together to make a loop.

Place this loop around the top of the bag (on the outside) so that the top edge is in line with the top of the bag.  Sew in place.

Finally, flip the facing inside towards the lining.  Turn under a small hem and slipstitch in place just inside the seam line.  This means that you have enclosed all the seam allowance and have a neat finish to the top of the tote bag with gusset.

It takes slightly longer to make a bag this way, but it does give a very professional looking bag – and it will help your bottles to stand upright more easily.

Here’s the video:

Christmas Sweet Bag – Homemade

 

Christmas sweet bag

Christmas sweet bag

The Christmas sweet bag is I think the first time that I have managed to produce a festive project in July, in keeping with the Christmas in July trend which gives crafters plenty of time to make things for Christmas.  This is a very simple and easy to make bag, so that may be why I managed it now!  It would be great for either sweets or small trinkets and measures about 6″ square and a couple of inches high.

Cutting requirements for the Christmas sweet bag

10″ squares:  one each in green and red

cord:  about 40″of matching cord or ribbon

Place squares right sides together

Place squares right sides together

Making the Christmas sweet bag

Place the two squares with right sides together and sew around three and a half edges.  Clip the corners and turn the bag right side out through the gap in the stitching.

Close the gap with a small seam

Close the gap with a small seam

Turn under a small hem on the unsewn part of the seam and press in place.  Top stitch all round the edge to hold the seam in place.

Lay the square out so that the side that you wish to be the outside is on top – in my case that’s the red.

Turn a corner in towards the middle

Turn a corner in towards the middle

Lay the cord across a corner and fold the corner in towards the middle.  If you measure both sides of the folded section at 2.1/2″ then you’ll be sure that the turned in triangle is even.

Obviously in normal times the cord would have matched the fabrics, but most of my stuff is packed away ready for the move and all I could find was this pink cord – which is totally inappropriate, but illustrates the technique for making the bag.

Repeat with all 4 corners

Repeat with all 4 corners

Sew across the corner just inside the cord, but making sure that you don’t catch the cord in the stitching.  Backstitch at each end of this seam.

Repeat with the other three corners.

Slowly pull the cord from 2 sides

Slowly pull the cord from 2 sides

Tie the two ends of the cord together so make sure that they don’t slip out from inside those folded corners.  Slowly begin to pull the cord from two sides to draw up the sides of the Christmas sweet bag.

Christmas sweet bag with folds outside

Christmas sweet bag with folds outside

Keep tightening the cord until you feel that the bag is as tight as you wish it to be.  In the photo at the top I have the edges of the bag (between the folds) inside the cord so that they form folds within the bag, but you can see it here where I have pushed the edges to the outside -it’s up to you which way you prefer to arrange the fabric in your Christmas sweet bag.

I haven’t sewn the red folds in place on either of these versions, but you may wish to do so in order to make the bag more secure.  It really depends what you will be putting in the bag.

Here’s the video:

Thanks for visiting my blog.

I hope to see you again soon.

Rose

Tote Bag With Outside Pockets

 

Tote bag with outer pocket

Tote bag with outer pocket

I made this tote bag with outside pockets partly because I haven’t shown one on the website before and partly because tote bags are going to be the Quilt Guild’s tombola prizes at this year’s Festival of Quilts.  They are hoping to get 3,000 tote bags sent to them so that they can give away lots and lots of them at the Festival.  The rules are that they must be no bigger than 21″ square, must have firmly attached handles and must lie flat.  That last stipulation is totally understandable when you think of the piles and piles of tote bags they are going to end up with.

They can be made any way you wish and quilted, embroidered or appliqued as much as you like.  So if anyone in the UK has some spare fabric hanging around (as if!), do get tote bag making.  They need to be in by the end of July and if you email me I’ll give you the address to send them to.

So back to my tote bag with outside pockets pattern.  I’ve made it absolutely plain so that it will be more easy to see what I have done – blue for the outside, yellow for the lining and white for the pocket.

Cutting requirements for the tote bag with outer pocket

Blue fabric:  two 7.1/2″ by 16.1/2″ rectangles, one 2.1/2″ by 16.1/2″ rectangle, one 16.1/2″ square, one 2.1/2″ strip cut across the width of fabric

Yellow fabric:  two 16.1/2″ squares, one 2.1/2″ strip cut across the width of fabric

White fabric:  one 3.1/2″ by 11.1/2″ rectangle – this is what I actually used, although I would recommend a 4.1/2″ rectangle – see below

Layout for the front bag panel

Layout for the front bag panel

Making the outer tote bag

Hem one 3.1/2″ edge of the white rectangle by turning under a small hem twice to bury the raw edges and sew in place.  This will be the top of the pocket.

Lay out the blue rectangles:  one 7.1/2″ panel on each side with a 2.1/2″ strip in the middle.

Place the white rectangle along the right hand side of one of the blue 7.1/2″ rectangles, right sides together, lining up the bottom edges.

 

Sew the 2.1/2" blue rectangle to it

Sew the 2.1/2″ blue rectangle to it

Open out the panel

Open out the panel

Flip the 2.1/2″ blue rectangle on top with wrong side up.

Sew along the right hand edge to secure the three layers.

Press the seam and open out the panel.  As you can see the white extends beyond the blue.  This is so that the pocket isn’t tight against the blue, giving you room to put things in the pocket.  Hindsight being a wonderful thing, I wish that I had made the white rectangle 4.1/2″ wide to make the pocket a bit bigger.

Add the final blue rectangle

Add the final blue rectangle

Press the white fabric flat with your fingers

Press the white fabric flat with your fingers

Lay the final blue rectangle on the panel with wrong side up.  Make sure that the right hand edge of the white fabric is in line with the right hand edge of the panel – it will pouch up a bit, but that is intentional.

Sew down the right hand edge to join all the layers together.  Press the seam and open out the panel.  Flatten the white rectangle out with your fingers.  It will extend a little beyond each seam line.

Pin the overlap of white at the bottom

Pin the overlap of white at the bottom

Lay the blue square on top

Lay the blue square on top

Flatten the sides of the white fabric down the length and pin in place along the bottom edge.

That’s the front panel of the tote bag complete.  The 16.1/2″ blue square is the back panel.  Lay this right sides together on the front panel and sew together on three edges – the two sides and the bottom – to make a pouch.  Turn right side out and press.

Sew the strips together down the sides to form a tube

Sew the strips together down the sides to form a tube

Press and top stitch the sides

Press and top stitch the sides

Making the tote bag straps

Place the blue and yellow strips with right sides together and sew along both long edges to form a tube.  Cut in half so that you have two equal lengths for the two straps.  Turn the top down and pull through to turn the tubes right side out.  Press and top stitch the sides.  This holds the layers straight and also gives a little strengthening to the tote bag straps.

Pin the straps to the outer bag

Pin the straps to the outer bag

Assembling the tote bag with outside pockets

Pin the straps to the outer bag with right sides together.  I’ve pinned mine so that each one is about 1″ from the central strip of the front panel.  Then do the same with the other strap, pinning it to the back panel of the bag.

Sew the two yellow squares of the lining together along the sides only to form a tube.

Pull the lining over the outer bag

Pull the lining over the outer bag

With right sides together, pull the tube of lining down over the outer bag.

Line up the top edges, pin and sew around the top of the bag to secure the outer bag, lining and straps together.

Pull the lining away from the outer bag

Pull the lining away from the outer bag

Pull the lining up and away from the outer bag.  The bottom of the lining (at the right of the photo) is completely open which is obviously not very useful in a bag.  Turn under a small seam across this edge and sew the two sides together to close the gap.

Push the lining back inside the bag and top stitch around the top of the bag to hold the layers in place.  That’s your tote bag with outside pockets finished and ready for use.

Here’s the video:

Thanks for visiting my blog.

I hope to see you again soon.

Rose

 

Secure Tote Bag Pattern

Secure tote bag pattern

Secure tote bag pattern

This secure tote bag pattern is so unusual that it really took my fancy when I saw it.  There is a basic rectangle section for the bag itself and then the strap has a gap in it for you to put things in the bag and take them out – but the neat part is that by using a bracelet or something similar you can close off the gap to make the contents of the bag secure.

Requirements for the secure tote bag pattern

Requirements for the secure tote bag pattern

Fabric requirements for the secure tote bag

Top fabric: two panels of fabric 10″ by 15″. This is the light fabric in the photo. You will also need a strip 1″ wide by about 4.1/2″ long for the loop.

Strap fabric:  two panels of fabric 10″ wide cut across the width of fabric. This is the dark fabric in the photo.

Bracelet or hair scrunchy or something similar that’s elastic to use in the strap.

Fold the edges in to the middle

Fold the edges in to the middle

Pin the loop to the lower rectangle

Pin the loop to the lower rectangle

Make the secure tote bag section

Begin with the loop – fold in both long edges of the fabric to the middle and then fold the strip in half so that all the raw edges are buried.  Top stitch along the length to hold the layers in place.

Place the two top fabric sections with right sides together and place the loop so that the raw edges of the loop are in line with the edge – it’s not very easy to see in the photo, but it’s about 2″ down from the top on the left hand side.

Turn the tote bag right side out

Turn the tote bag right side out

Sew the sides and the bottom of the rectangles together, leaving the top open to form a pouch.

Turn the pouch right side out and press.

Use pins to mark the gap

Use pins to mark the gap

Make the secure tote bag strap

Place the two strap sections of fabric with right sides together.  Place a tape measure alongside the fabric and place a pin at 16″ from the top and another at 24″ from the top.  The stretch between the two pins will mark the gap in the strap.

Mark a line from the pin to the left of the corner

Mark a line from the pin to the left of the corner

Cut along the line and discard the fabric to the left

Cut along the line and discard the fabric to the left

Using your ruler, mark a line from the 24″ pin to about 2″ to the left of the bottom right hand corner of the rectangle.  Cut along this line and discard the fabric to the left of the cut.

Sew the two pieces of strap fabric together down the left hand side from the top to the first marker pin.

Leave a gap between the pins and then begin sewing again from the second pin along the diagonal line, across the 2″ or so at the bottom and up the right hand side.  Leave the top open to form another pouch.

Turn under a small double hem along both pieces of fabric at the gap so that the raw edges are hidden.

Pull the strap fabric over the top fabric

Pull the strap fabric over the top fabric

Fold the strap down towards the loop

Fold the strap down towards the loop

Assembling the secure tote bag

With the strap section still wrong side out, pull it up over the bag section, so that the top fabric and strap fabric are right sides together.  Line up the top edges of both fabrics with each other.  Pin and sew the two layers together all round the top.

Putting your hand through the gap, pull the sections of the bag out so that everything is right sides out and press.

Pull the bracelet up onto the strap .

Push the strap through the loop

Push the strap through the loop

Push the end of the strap through the loop and tie it in a knot.  Your secure tote bag is now ready for use.  You can put items into the bag through the gap in the strap, and then pull the bracelet across that section of the strap to close the gap.  Neat, isn’t it!

In the video, I have referred to the strap as the lining – just ignore me and assume that it’s all strap!  Here’s the video:

If you want to see any other tote bag patterns, you can click here.

Thanks for visiting my blog.

I hope to see you again soon.

Rose

 

 

African Purse Pattern

African purse pattern

African purse pattern

Some of my African fabric has a design of squares which makes it perfect for a simple African purse pattern.  The squares are not necessary for the pattern, but they do help to make a pretty purse.  Usually when I make a clutch bag I layer the fabric and then fold it in thirds so that the front of the pouch part consists of three layers.  For this purse pattern, I have used a single layer of fabric for the front of the pouch and it makes for a very simple and quick project.

Cutting requirements for the African purse pattern

6.3/4″ by 12″ rectangle in top fabric, wadding and lining fabric

6.3/4″ by 5.1/2″ rectangle in contrasting fabric for front of pouch

2″ strip of binding fabric about 45″ long

1″ by 4″ strip of fabric for button loop

button

Layer the fabric for the puse pattern

Layer the fabric for the purse pattern

Make a loop for the button

Make a loop for the button

Making the African purse pattern

Lay the lining fabric with right side down.  Add the wadding and then the top fabric with right side up – the same layering as for any quilt.  Pin to secure the layers.

Make a loop for the button:  fold the edges of the strip in to the middle and then fold in half so that all the raw edges are concealed.  Sew along the strip to keep the folds in place.

Add the small rectangle and the button loop

Add the small rectangle and the button loop

Sew the binding all round

Sew the binding all round

Turn under a small double hem on one 6.3/4″ edge of the fabric for the front of the pouch.  Sew in place.  Place this rectangle on the lining fabric with right side up.  Make sure that the hemmed edge is at the top.  Place the button loop in the middle of the bottom edge, on top of all the layers.  Pin.

Fold the binding strip in half along the length and press.  Place this on the top of the African purse pattern fabrics with the fold towards the middle and all the raw edges in line – just like any binding for a quilt.

Slipstitch the binding in place

Slipstitch the binding in place

Sew the binding in place and then flip to the other side to slip stitch in place.  I’ve chosen to have the hand sewing on the outside of the purse mainly because I wanted the purse lining to be on top when I was machine sewing the binding on – that way I felt that the button loop would be more secure, and also I could make sure that the loop stayed in place while I was sewing.

Sew the button on the front

Sew the button on the front

Fold the purse in half, pull the button loop out so that it is visible and sew a button in place to secure the flap.  It really hasn’t taken me long to make this African purse pattern and I think it will make a great small gift for someone at Christmas.  If you wanted to make the pouch more secure you could add a zip or a button to secure the front of the pouch to the lining, but I have made the most simple version here.

 

Here’s the video:

Drawstring Bag Tutorial

Drawstring bag tutorial

Drawstring bag tutorial

I’ve written this drawstring bag tutorial because during my recent travels I decided that I could do better than using a plastic carrier bag to pack my shoes in.  I have made three of these shoe bags (you’ll see why later) and they are roughly 14″ by 9″.  I’ve made them in two colours which I hope will make it easier to see what I’ve done.

Use your own shoes to decide on size

Use your own shoes to decide on size

Cutting requirements

I’ve used a 9″ strip of two different fabrics cut across the width of fabric.

For the drawstring I needed about 20″ for each drawstring bag.

I used my own shoes to decide on the largest size of drawstring bag that I would need – if you wear shoes with 5″ heels you will obviously need to make a different size.

I decided on a length of 14″ for this drawstring bag tutorial – that way I could cut three bag panels from each width of fabric.

Place fabric with wrong sides together

Place fabric with wrong sides together

Turn wrong side out and sew another seam

Turn wrong side out and sew another seam

Drawstring bag tutorial

In order to make the bags neat and tidy on the inside, I have used a French seam, so the first step is to place two pieces of fabric with wrong sides together.  Sew a 1/4″ seam on three sides, leaving one of the short sides open.

Turn the bag inside out and sew another 1/4″ seam around the same three sides.  This will enclose the raw edges so that you don’t get any fraying inside the drawstring bag.

Turn under a hem on the top of the drawstring bag

Turn under a hem on the top of the drawstring bag

Turn under a small double hem around the top of the bag to enclose the raw edges.  You could either sew this hem by machine or by hand.  I chose machine as it’s quicker.

Add the ribbon to the top of the bag

Add the ribbon to the top of the bag

That’s the shoe bag complete – now it’s just a question of making the drawstring part.

Rather than making a tube around the top of the bag and threading ribbon through it as I did for the plastic bag holder, I wanted a nice feminine touch for this bag.  I’ve used some lace with ribbon already threaded – I’m pretty sure that there is a name for it, but I can’t think what it is.

Completed and filled drawstring bag

Completed and filled drawstring bag

Turn under the raw edge of the lace and pin the lace all round the top of the bag.  Sew both above and below the ribbon to make sure that the lace is fastened securely.

I hope that you’ve found this drawstring bag tutorial helpful – this would also make a great gift bag.  I can think of all sorts of things that I could store in these bags besides my shoes.

Thanks for visiting my blog.

I hope to see you again soon.

Rose

African Fabric Tote Bag

 

African fabric tote bag

African fabric tote bag

African fabric

African fabric

This African fabric tote bag is the first project that I have made with the fabric that I brought back from Zimbabwe.  I agonised for ages before I cut it, but in the end I decided to cut the individual designs and sew them as separate blocks.  This also means, of course, that I can make the fabric last longer!

The bits that I cut are about 7″ wide, but there’s no point me giving a detailed tutorial here because obviously you are likely to have different sized blocks of any fabric that you wish to showcase.

Sew black strips between the designs

Sew black strips between the designs

Sew black strips down the sides

Sew black strips down the sides

What I did basically was sew 2″ black strips above and below the designs and 4″ strips of black on the sides.  I was aiming to get two panels the same size so that they could be the front and back of my African fabric tote bag.

I ended up with two panels 15″ by 16.1/2″, so I cut two lining panels the same size.

Sew the bag straps with right sides together

Sew the bag straps with right sides together

Turn the straps right side out

Turn the straps right side out

The bag panels I placed right sides together and sewed the sides and the bottom to make a pouch.

The lining panels I placed right sides together and sewed the sides only to make a tube.

Make the straps for the African fabric tote bag

Cut a 2.1/2″ strip each of black and of lining fabric across the width of fabric. Place right sides together and sew a seam down each side to create a tube.  Cut in half to create two straps.  Pull the straps down over themselves to turn them right side out.  Press and then topstitch down each side of each strap to hold the layers in place.

Pin the straps to the tote bag

Pin the straps to the tote bag

Check the straps are the right way round

Check the straps are the right way round

Assembling the African fabric tote bag

Turn the black bag panels right side out and press.  Pin the straps to the top of the bag with right sides together.  On the right you can see how to check that you have the straps positioned correctly.

I find it best to pin each part of the strap with two pins pointing vertically up.  This helps stop the straps from moving when you are sewing them.

Pull the lining over the bag and straps

Pull the lining over the bag and straps

Pull the lining away from the bag

Pull the lining away from the bag

With the lining still having right sides together, pull the tube down over the top of the bag and straps and line up all the raw edges at the top.  Sew all round the top – I find it safest to use a 1/2″ seam here to ensure that all the layers are caught in the stitching.

Pull the lining out away from the bag.  You’ll see that what will be the bottom of the lining is still open.

Sew the bottom of the lining

Sew the bottom of the lining

Turn under a small hem all the way round the bottom of the lining and sew a small seam across it to close the gap (this was the other end of the tube created by sewing only the sides of the lining).

Push the lining back inside the bag, gently pushing the corners out.  Top stitch around the top of the bag to hold the layers in place.

That completes my African fabric tote bag – I still have plenty more fabric and will try to be a little more adventurous with the next project!

Here’s the video:

Thanks for visiting my blog.

I hope to see you again soon.

Rose

Single Bottle Bag Pattern


 

Bottle bag

Bottle bag

A bottle is always an acceptable gift (certainly is to me, anyway!) but giving it in a handmade bottle bag can make it a really special gift.  Plus it protects the bottle while in transit from you to the intended recipient.  This bottle cover pattern is for a single bottle.  It was difficult getting a photo that showed you the full bottle bag, but basically the main bag is made from alternating strips of black and white.  The lining is blue and the binding at the top of the bag is the same blue fabric.  There are two full width handles for added strength and the bottom of the bag is flat so that the bottle will stand upright.

Cutting requirements for the wine bag pattern

Top fabric:  six strips 2.1/2″ by 14″ – I used black and white alternating for these

Lining fabric:  two rectangles 6.1/2″ by 14″

Straps:  two strips 2.1/2″ by 14″ in both top fabric and lining fabric

Top binding:  one strip 2.1/2″ by 12.1/2″ joined in a loop

Making the bottle bag

Create a tube with lining fabric

Create a tube with lining fabric

Sew the strips together

Sew the strips together

Sew the six strips of top fabric together along the 14″ edge.  I’ve chosen 14″ because that means you will get three strips from each width of fabric.  Fold in half and sew down the side and across the bottom to create a pouch.

For the straps place one top fabric rectangle with one lining fabric rectangle right sides together and sew a seam 1/4″ from each edge to make a 14″ tube.  Make two of these.

Place the two lining fabric rectangles with right sides together and sew along three sides to create a pouch and turn this right side out.

 

Fold the corner along the bottom seam

Fold the corner along the bottom seam

Do the same with both pouches

Do the same with both pouches

On the bottom seam of both the top fabric and the lining fabric mark a point 2″ in from each side.  Fold the corner point in to that mark on each side of the base of the bag.  Slipstitch the corner to that point.  When you flatten out that triangle that you have created along the bottom you’ll see that you have created a flat bottom for the bottle bag.

 

 

 

Pin the straps in place

Pin the straps in place

Turn the lining back so that the right side is on the inside and push the lining down inside the main bottle bag.  Line up the raw edges of both parts of the bottle bag at the top.  Pin the straps to the top of the bag with right sides down and one end of each strap on one side of the bag, the other end on the other side of the bag.

 

 

 

 

 

Make a loop

Make a loop

Pin the loop to the top of the bag

Pin the loop to the top of the bag

Sew together the two short ends of the binding rectangle to make a loop.  Pin one edge of the loop to the top of the bottle bag (over the straps) with right sides together.  Sew around the top to secure all the layers together.

 

 

 

 

Sew the binding to the inside of the bottle bag

Sew the binding to the inside of the bottle bag

Pull the free edge of the loop up and fold it down towards the inside of the bottle bag.  Turn under a small hem and slipstitch in place along the seam on the inside.  You will have about an inch of this binding showing on the outside of the bag.  Hindsight being a wonderful thing, I now wish that I had used red for this binding so that it would show up as more of a feature.

This makes a really sturdy bottle bag which will really set off any gift of a bottle.

Here’s the video:

Thanks for visiting my blog.

Hope to see you again soon.

Rose

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