Main fabric, ½ yd.
Coordinating tab fabric, 3”x1”
Sewing machine and coordinating thread
Iron and pressing surface
This idea was originally published in our 2016 Garden issue. Subscribe today and save off newsstand prices! You’ll get ALL the projects delivered to you in six jam-packed issues per year.
1. Cut two 14”x10” panels from main fabric.
2. Pin right side of zipper onto right side of one fabric piece. Sew ¼” from outer edge of zipper tape using zipper foot. Repeat on other side to attach zipper to other piece of main fabric.
3. Test fabric before ironing to prevent scorching. Press main fabric away from zipper, being careful not to melt zipper. Topstitch 1/8” from zipper teeth on both sides.
4. Create French seam for bottom. Sew bottom edges together with wrong sides facing using a ¼” seam allowance. Trim seam allowance to 1/8” and press to one side. Turn bag inside out with right sides facing. Press folded bottom edge. Sew bottom of bag using a ½” seam allowance to enclose raw edge. Press French seam to one side.
5. Arrange fabric so that zipper is lined up above bottom French seam as shown on diagram. Fold fabric tab in half and pin to bottom seam with raw edges lined up. Baste tab ¼” from edge.
6. Open zipper half way to make it easy to turn bag right side out later. Pin unzipped ends to bottom of bag so zipper is touching as though it’s still zipped. Make sure bottom seam is lined up with center of zipper teeth. Pin other side to bottom of bag. Measure ½” in from each end; draw straight line as shown. Mark 2” squares on all four corners of bag, starting from the ½” line. Cut out corners.
7. With zipper side facing up, stitch on top of marked lines on each side. Backstitch securely at beginning and end. Finish edges with pinking shears.
8. Open up one of the cut corners so it creates a flattened angled line. Sew along angled edge using 3/8” seam allowance. Sew with side seam pointing away from zipper, toward bag bottom. Repeat on remaining three corners. Trim with pinking shears.
9. Turn bag right side out and poke out corners with point turner. Press bag or shape with hands.
Try waxed canvas, leather, coated fabric (often found in the outdoors section of fabric stores), or wool felt for the main fabric. Coordinating webbing or leather works well for the tab.
Instead of a tab, try creating a handle with leather. In step 8, after you’ve flattened the corners, insert ends of folded 8”x1” handle to one side of bag before sewing flattened corners shut.
©2016 By Sanae Ishida. All rights reserved. Excerpted from Sewing Happiness: A Year of Simple Projects for Living Well by permission of Sasquatch Books.