HOW TO SEW A BUCKET-STYLE BAG



This one handled bag is a quick and simple project to sew at home. Perfect for gifting with a couple of jars of preserves (or some homemade bread) or even a lovely gift for a knitter or crafter, as these bags are perfect for storing craft projects, fresh ingredients and more. This is a project we make every Easter as they’re also good for those little egg hunters – you could make them with cute seasonal fabric, but for sustainability, we’d recommend a lovely print that can be used ALL year long!

   

MATERIALS:

o 2 x 50cm square pieces of woven fabric for the outer

o 2 x 50cm square pieces of woven fabric for the lining

o 50cm x 100cm wadding or interfacing (fusible fleece or iron on interfacing is best, thickness is your personal preference – the stiffer the interfacing, the more structure the bag has)

o 2 x 60cm pieces of 25mm wide bias binding

o Spray adhesive (optional)

o Pen or pencil or chalk

o Ruler

o Fabric scissors

o Sewing machine

o Thread to co-ordinate with the fabric (and match bias binding)

o Pins or clips

o Iron and ironing board

   

NOTES:

o An old quilt cover makes many bucket-style bags and is a great way to reduce waste!

o Remember to wash your fabric before cutting them as some fabrics may shrink.

o Want to add some embellishments? Wash the fabric, stamp, stencil or sew on fabric before cutting, pinning and sewing into bags.

o You can make these bucket-style bags any size you want! Add extra width and/or height to increase the bag size;

o Sizes may vary due to being handmade.

o Use different coloured fabric for each side, or even a pocket/patch matching in a coordinating fabric.

o Making lots of bags? Cut them all at once, then pin all at once to sew etc. to make them quickly and efficiently. We sort into thread colour bundles to save changing machine threads too often!

o Bucket-style bags can be used for many other things around the home! Smaller sizes are perfect for craft projects and larger sizes makes pretty cute bags for buying (or gifting) fresh fruits, vegetables, herbs and flowers!

o Why not make some extra bags and share with your family, friends and workplace.

o Pay it forward: teach someone else how to make their own bucket-style bags to reduce plastic bag use in your community!

          

STEP 1: Work out what size/s of bucket-style bag you want to make. 

Use this A4 pattern template as a guide to determine the bag size. There is also an A3 pattern template at the end of these instructions. Remember to add the extra 3 inches (7.5cm) height to the handle with an extra piece of paper!

If you’re adding applique (or a pocket), determine those pieces now too (sew them on before beginning Step 4).

   

STEP 2: Measure and mark fabric. 

Iron your fabric/s, then mark with a pencil or pen, using the template as a guide. You will need two outer fabric pieces, two lining fabric pieces and two interfacing pieces.

   

STEP 3: Cut fabric to size/s.

REMEMBER TO CHECK THE PRINT DIRECTION AGAIN BEFORE CUTTING ANY FABRIC!

Cut two outer fabric pieces, two lining fabric pieces and two interfacing pieces.

Attach one piece of interfacing to each outer fabric piece with spray adhesive (or ironing if you are using fusible fleece) or sew outer fabric and wadding together if required. Trim and discard excess interfacing/wadding.

     

STEP 4: Sew bag handle. 

Place the two outer fabric pieces together (right sides together, so the print is on the inside). Straight stitch the two outer pieces of fabric together across the top of the handle using 1/4 inch seam allowance.

Repeat Step 4 with the two lining pieces to create the bag handle lining.



STEP 5: Sew bag sides.

With right sides together still, sew down and across the two sides and the base of the bag outer piece using 1/4 inch seam allowance. This step is easy to sew by aligning the two sides as you sew around the base – you can pin prior to sewing if you like.

Trim away the bulk around the curved corners.

Repeat Step 5 with the two lining pieces to create the bag lining.


STEP 6: Turn right way out.

Turn the outer bag piece right way out.

The lining does not need turning out.





STEP 7: Pin lining and outer bag pieces together.

Place the bag lining inside the bag outer piece. 

Align the seams by adding a pin (or clip) at either side of the handle seams and at both top side seams to secure the outer and lining fabric pieces together.




STEP 8: Sew lining and outer bag pieces together.
Sew the two pieces together using 1/4 inch seam allowance. Remove pins/clips as you sew. You can use a tacking/wider stitch at this step if you like.

Ensure your stitches are only a few millimetres from the edge of the fabrics so that the stitching is not visible once you add the bias binding to finish the bag in the following steps

   

     

STEP 9: Begin adding bias binding.
Open bias binding and fold over the end 1/2 inch.

Begin to sew the bias binding edge to the bag, sewing a few inches at a time and straightening the bias binding to be flush with the bag edge as you sew.

Remember to make your stitch length normal if you made the stitches longer in Step 8 before beginning to sew this step!

As you get closer to your starting point, trim away most of the bias binding that remains, so that it overlaps slightly as you sew.

Repeat to add bias binding to the other side of the handle.

    

STEP 10: Finish bias binding. 

You can finish the bias binding by machine or by hand.

Hand sewing the back of the bias binding onto the bag results in near invisible stitching but you can also fold over the bias binding by hand, secure with pins or clips and sew by machine.

Enjoy your handmade bucket-style bag!



Author: Megan Radaich          

Image credit: Megan Radaich          

Publication: www.foodpreserving.org


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