Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Adding to The Easiest Bag

Remember The Easiest Bag You've Ever Made from last week?  Yeah, it was a bit boring, but the point was how simple the bag was.  You can make something cute with cute fabric and whip out a bag in no time.  However, if you want you can dress it up like this:
 Isn't it cute?   I love the bird.  I used a bird image from a royalty free source, re-sized it to about 6x6" in a photo editing program, printed it out, and traced it onto pattern fabric.  (Have you bought your five yards yet? I use this stuff all the time.)

Then I cut out my bird from a cute print and a stabilizer fabric.  I actually used my pattern tracing fabric, but this is the perfect use for fusible webbing if you happen to have some.   Notice which direction the bird faces.   The bottom of the bag is the cut side.  Since you're starting with the 31" square from the Easiest Bag pattern, you need to fold the fabric in half and press it.  That pressing line is the top of the bag.   Fold it in half the other way and press and that is the side of the bag.  Your front is two inches in from the fold and two and a half from the cut.  Place your applique on the front of the bag in a spot that looks good to you.  
 You can sew the applique down with a simple zig zag stitch.  If your machine has a blanket stitch that makes a nice stitch on appliques. 
 Now cut out a strip of fabric 31" wide by 5"tall.  Place it along the width of the bag, lining up the bottom edge of the print strip with the bottom edge of the bag.   Baste it down.  Sew a ribbon over the raw edge of the print. 
 Cut out another piece of fabric 13.5x31".   Sew a folded hem along one long edge. 
 Place on the other end of the bag fabric so the long raw edge lines up with the raw edge of the bag and the hemmed edge points toward the center.   This is your interior pockets.  I decided to have two full size pockets on the wide sides of the bag, so I sewed down from the hemmed edge to the bottom 2.5" from each of the raw sides and then 10.5" from that stitching.   I used the ends as pockets as well.  The side with the seam got pencil pockets.  You'll notice I sewed across the pockets about 6" down so I didn't lose pencils in the bottom of the bag.   For the other narrow pocket I also sewed 6" down making it perfect for a cell phone, sunglasses, or a wallet. 

From this point just follow the construction directions for The Easiest Bag.  And there you go!   These extra additions should only add about 30-45 minutes to your bag.  If you work fast, you could have a new bag in under an hour.   If you want to start with a 30" square you could make two bags from one yard of 60" wide canvas.  With 27" squares you could make two bags from 3/4 of a yard of 54" wide fabric.   You will have to adjust the pocket seams on the inside if you change the dimensions of the bag.   That's easy to do, however, and wouldn't these make great teacher gifts? 

Post a link if you make the bag!  Thanks!


  1. You put a bird on it! WTG.

  2. well, of course, I put a bird on it. ;) No sharpies here though.

  3. Very cute! (Grinning at "royalty free source.")

  4. yeah, just wanted to make that clear. You never know with birds these days. ;)