My daughter just loves loves loves a bag. The cutest thing is the way she holds them; resting her bag on her forearm like a little old lady whilst foraging around the house and garden looking for interesting things to stash. The contents are usually a varying selection of dolls, snacks and Power Rangers borrowed from her brother. So, no prizes for guessing the inspiration behind this week’s post.
This quilted bag was made during a nap time, so basically in no time at all (I normally get an hour). The pocket at the front is very roomy and makes the collecting of toys a bit more fun. I used some cute vintage fabric I had, and the quilting adds a bit of home-made detail. You could even add an appliquéd initial for a personal touch (click the appliqué tab at bottom to take you to my other appliqué how-to posts).
You will need:
- main fabric 28 x 60 cm
- pocket fabric 24 x 42 cm
- fabric scissors
- sewing machine
Approximate time needed: 1-2 hours
1. Taking the main fabric, fold it in half widthways and you will have a rough rectangular shape. The fold will be the bottom of the bag. Wrong-side facing, hem the top by folding down a 4 cm double hem (2cm, fold, 2cm) on the front and back of bag. Iron and sew down along the edge of the hem.
2. Putting the main fabric to the side for a moment, fold the pocket fabric in half widthways right side to right side, so you have a rough square. With the fold at the bottom, sew together the two sides with a 1 cm seam, turn the right way out, tuck and fold in the raw edge at the top, iron and sew down on the right side of the fabric.
3. Now you are ready to quilt the pocket fabric. You can use a fabric pen and ruler here to mark out lines to follow as you quilt but I did mine by eye (a perk of playing with sewing machines for 15 years). I started in the middle and sewed a diagonal line from the top left corner to the bottom right, then used this as a guide to continue sewing lines in the same direction to the left & right of the original line I sewed. Then do the same going in the opposite direction to get the quilted effect. TIP: after every sewn line, cut and trim neatly the threads before going onto the next line as this will stop your sewing machine chewing up the loose threads.
4. Before you sew the main part of the bag up, pin the pocket in place to the front of the bag and sew (on the right side) down one side of the pocket, along the bottom, and back up the other side. I also did an extra row of stitching from the top to bottom about 0.5 cm in from previous seam for reinforcement.
5. Right-side to right-side pin and sew the side seams of the main bag and sew a small right angle seam between the bottom of the side seam and bottom of the bag so you get a nice corner when the bag is pulled the right way round.
6. To make the straps, cut two matching lengths of fabric to how long you’d like the straps to be, fold both sides to the centre of the strip, fold again, iron and pin. Neaten the two ends by folding and tucking the excess fabric away, then sew down. Then sew into the inside of the bag with a ‘X’ shaped seam.
Happy sewing and happy weekend-it’s supposed to be a sunny one! Feel free to comment below and share!