I am super-excited to bring you this sewing tutorial AND 30-minute step-by-step video on how to make the bag! I shot the video this past November, but this is the first time the video is available on my blog (for free!). This is also a guest post for Jennifer at Ellison Lane Quilts
as part of her Summer Sewing Contest
…lots of fun prizes await!
As far as the video goes, it may take some time to load to your computer (but you can surf the web while you want, or come back to your computer later); or you can download it and view it anytime!
ALL SEAMS ARE 1/2″ UNLESS OTHERWISE NOTED.
PRE-WASH AND IRON ALL FABRICS.
PLEASE READ ALL INSTRUCTIONS BEFORE BEGINNING.
Bag finished size: 15″ x 9.5″
- 1/2 yard fabric for exterior
- 1/2 yard fabric for interior and accent
- 1/4 yard fabric for pockets
- 3-1/2 yards Pellon SF-101 fusible woven interfacing
- 1 yard Pellon Thermolam fusible interfacing
- 1/2″ magnetic snap
- coordinating thread
- glue stick
- fabric marker or chalk
- pressing cloth
STEP 1 ~ PRINT THE PATTERN PIECES
1a. Print out the pattern pieces for: -Main Panel “A”
-Main Panel “B”
Helpful Hint: After printing, make sure that the 1″ square on the first page measures up to an inch. This will ensure that your pattern pieces have printed at the correct size. If not, go back, save the file, and/or make the appropriate adjustment to your printer. If you still have trouble, please e-mail me at email@example.com and I would be happy to send you a pdf of the pattern pieces!
1b. Tape Main Panel “A” and Main Panel “B” together at the dotted line to form one piece. This will be your Main Panel pattern piece.
STEP 2 ~ CUT OUT YOUR FABRIC
From the Exterior Fabric
2a. Cut 1 piece measuring 35″ x 3.5″. This will be your Exterior Side Panel.
2b. Cut 1 piece measuring 30″ x 4″. This will be your Strap.
2c. Using the Main Panel pattern piece, cut 2 pieces on the fold. These will be your Exterior Main Panels.
2d. Using the Flap pattern piece, cut 2 pieces on the fold.
From the Interior Fabric
2e. Cut 1 piece measuring 35″ x 3.5″. This will be your Interior Side Panel.
2f. Using the Main Panel pattern piece, cut 2 pieces on the fold. These will be your Interior Main Panels.
2g. Using the Accent pattern piece, cut 2 pieces on the fold. These will be your Accent Pieces.
From the Pocket Fabric
2h. Cut 4 pieces, each measuring 10″ x 6.5″. These will become the Pockets.
From the Pellon Woven Interfacing
2i. Cut 1 piece measuring 30″ x 4″. Fuse to the Strap fabric.
2j. Cut 2 pieces, each measuring 35″ x 3.5″. Fuse to the Exterior Side Panel and the Interior Side Panel.
2k. Using the Main Panel pattern piece, cut 4 pieces on the fold. Fuse to the wrong side of 2 Exterior Main Panels and 2 Interior Main Panels using manufacturer’s instructions.
2l. Using the Accent pattern piece, cut 2 pieces on the fold. Fuse to 2 Accent Pieces.
2m. Using the Flap pattern piece, cut 2 pieces on the fold. Fuse to 2 Flaps.
2n. Cut 4 pieces, each measuring 10″ x 6.5″. Fuse to the 4 Pocket pieces.
From the Pellon Thermolam Interfacing
2o. Cut 2 pieces, each measuring 35″ x 3.5″. Using manufacturer’s instructions, you will be fusing the Thermolam to the Woven Interfacing that you already fused. Fuse to Exterior Side Panel and Interior Side Panel.
2p. Cut 1 piece measuring 30″ x 1″. This will be your Strap Insert. Set Aside.
2q. Using the Main Panel pattern piece, cut 4 pieces on the fold.
2r. Cut 2 pieces, each measuring 1-1/2″ x 1-1/2″. These will be used to enforce your magnetic snap. Set Aside.
LET’S START SEWING!!
BE SURE TO BACKSTITCH AT STARTING AND STOPPING POINTS.
STEP 3 ~ ASSEMBLE YOUR STRAP
3a. Along one long edge on the right side of your Strap fabric, make a mark with your fabric marker, 1/2″ from the edge. Repeat for the other long edge.
3b. With the wrong side of the strap facing you, use your iron to press one long edge of the fabric in (wrong sides will be facing). Repeat for the other long edge.
3c. Press your fabric in half. This will enclose both of the long raw edges.
3d. Using the Strap Insert that you cut in Step 2q., place it inside one half of your Strap. Fold the Strap back in black in place along the middle crease. Use your iron to fuse the Strap Insert in place.
3e. Using a coordinating thread, topstitch along one long edge, 1/8″ from the edge. Repeat for the other long edge.
STEP 4 ~ ASSEMBLE THE FLAP
4a. Take 1 Flap piece and 1 of the Thermolam squares that you cut in Step 2s. With the prongs of 1 end of the snap (the half of the snap that is smaller, with the raised center) in the middle of the mark, mark the prong placement with a fabric marker or chalk, approximately in the center of the Thermolam. Cut small slits at the marks
4b. Make a mark that is centered on the Flap from Step 4a., and 1-1/2″ up from the bottom edge of the Flap.
4c. With the prongs of 1 end of the snap in the middle of the mark on the Flap, mark the prong placement with a fabric marker or chalk. Cut small slits at the marks.
4d. Slide the prongs of the snap through the right side of the Flap. Place the Thermolam, then the washer, over the prongs. Close the prongs outward, making sure they lie flat.
Helpful Hint: I like to put a dab of Fray Check on the slits that were cut. I feel this helps the fabric hold up a bit better under the stress of the magnetic snap.
4e. Place both of your Flap pieces, right sides together. Pin. Begin sewing from the straight corner, and sew all around the curved edges. You will stop at the opposite straight corner (you will not be sewing the straight edge).
4f. Trim the seam allowance to 1/4″. Notch the “valleys” (cut tiny V’s) and clip the “peaks” (cut small slits), approximately every 1/2″. This will help your Flap lie smooth and flat.
4g. Turn the Flap right sides out. Use your fingers to push out the curves. Press. Edgestitch about 1/8″ from the edge.
STEP 5 ~ ASSEMBLE THE EXTERIOR PANEL
5a. Take 1 Accent piece. Stitch along the curved edge, 1/4″ from the edge.
5b. With the right side of that Accent Piece facing you, slowly use your fingers to turn that 1/4″ edge under. Do a little bit at a time, and follow that up with your iron. Continue until the entire curved edge is pressed under, hiding the basting stitch and the raw edge of the fabric.
5c. Take 1 Exterior Main Panel. Press in half. Do the same for the Accent Piece.
5d. Take your glue stick and glue the Accent Piece to the Exterior Main Panel. The raw edges at the top of both should be even, and they should be centered along the folds that you pressed.
5e. Topstitch the Accent Piece to the Exterior Main Panel, 1/8″ from the curved edge. Press so the creases are gone.
5f. Repeat Steps 5a. through 5e. for the remaining Accent Piece and Exterior Main Panel.
STEP 6 ~ ASSEMBLE THE EXTERIOR
6a. Take the Exterior Side Panel. Fold in half along the short edge. On the right side, make a mark 9″ down from the short raw edges, and a mark in 3/4″ from that raw edge. Connect the two marks that you made with a line. Repeat for the left edge.
6b. Cut along the lines on the right and the left sides.
6c. Take 1 of the Exterior Main Panels and place it, right side facing you. Place the short edge of the Exterior Side Panel at the top of the Exterior Main Panel, right sides facing.
6d. Begin pinning the Exterior Side Panel to the curved edge of the Exterior Main Panel, easing it along. Continue until you reach the opposite top edge of the Exterior Main Panel.
Helpful Hint: If you have difficulty pinning along the curve, try leaving it unpinned and just easing it along slowly with your fingers.
6e. Sew along the pinned edge. Notch along the curved edge, every 1/2″. Press the seam open.
6f. Repeat Steps 6a. through 6c. to attach the remaining Exterior Main Panel to the other long edge of the Exterior Side Panel.
6g. Take your strap, and baste one short edge to the top of one Side Panel, right sides together. Pin the other short edge of the strap to the other end of the Exterior Side Panel. Try your bag out and see if the strap length suits you. If not, trim, then baste the remaining short edge of the strap to the other end of the Exterior Side Panel, right sides together.
6h. Take the Flap, and center it on 1 Exterior Main Panel, so the raw edges are even. The snap should be facing you. Baste the Flap to the Exterior Main Panel.
STEP 7 ~ ASSEMBLE THE INTERIOR
7a. Take 2 of your Pocket pieces and place them, right sides together. Start sewing on the long edge, about 3″ from the corner. Pivot at the corner, continue along the short edge, pivot, continue along the long edge, then the short edge, and sew only 3″ along the long edge. This will leave an unfinished edge in the center of the 10″ side. This opening is for turning the pocket later (in my photo, you can see where you should sew, along the purple line).
7b. Trim the corners.
7c. Turn your Pocket right sides out. Use a turning tool (or other pointy object) to gently poke out the corners. Press the unfinished edge in 1/2″ on each side.
7d. Topstitch, 1/4″ from the edge, along the 10″ side that you sewed in Step 7a (leave the side with the opening alone).
7e. Take 1 Interior Main Panel. Press in half. Repeat for the Pocket. Place the pocket up 2 inches from the bottom of the Interior Main Panel, centered at your crease. The portion of the pocket that you pressed in should be at the bottom. Pin.
7f. With a 1/4″ seam allowance, begin sewing along one short edge, pivot, sew along the long unfinished edge, pivot, then sew along the remaining short edge (do not sew along the edge that you topstitched in Step 7d.).
7g. Repeat Steps 7a. through 7f. for the remaining Pocket pieces and Interior Main Panel.
7h. USING A 5/8″ SEAM ALLOWANCE (this will help the interior sit snuggly in the exterior), repeat Steps 6a. through 6d. to attach the Interior Main Panels to the Interior Side Panel. HOWEVER, make sure to leave a 6″ opening when attaching one of the Interior Main Panels to the Interior Side Panel (it is best to leave the opening at the bottom of the bag). This will help you turn your bag right-side out later.
STEP 8 ~ FINISHING THE BAG
8a. Take the remaining 3″ x 3″ square of Thermolam and the remaining half of the magnetic snap.
With the prongs of the end of the snap in the middle of the Thermolam, mark the prong placement with a fabric marker or chalk. Cut small slits at the marks.
8b. Make a mark on the Exterior Main Panel of the bag, on the portion that is on the opposite side from where the Flap is attached. Your mark will be centered (you should be able to still see the center crease from when you positioned the pockets earlier), and 3-1/4″ from the top.
8c. With the prongs from the snap, mark the placement with a fabric marker or chalk. Cut small slits at the marks.
8d. Push the prongs of the snap through the right side of the Exterior Main Panel, then place the scrap of Thermolam on top of the prongs (on the wrong side of the exterior), followed by the washer. Open the prongs away from each other to lie flat.
8e. With the Exterior right sides out and the Interior wrong sides out, place the Exterior inside the Interior. Be sure to push the Strap and Flap inside between the layers.
8f. Pin, making sure to match side seams. Sew all along the top edge.
8f. Turn the bag, right side out, through the opening in the Interior.
8g. Sew the opening in the Interior closed, either with a 1/4″ seam, or sew by hand.
8h. Press well. The key to a professional-looking bag is a good pressing!
I hope you’ve enjoyed this tutorial and the accompanying video tutorial to make this bag! Try experimenting with different embellishments or techniques, or perhaps make a patchwork version! Let me know if you have any questions! firstname.lastname@example.org