It’s back to party season and my supply of presents is dwindling at the moment, because I haven’t been to the shops to stock up on the school party presents. We’ve got one coming up over the weekend, and I really needed to pad out the present, so I pulled out my sewing machine to avoid a trip to the shops with three kids.
Before school started, I made a couple of bags for Beanie: one for his library books (which I’ll blog about one day… Maybe) and one for his joggers, which need to be taken to school on P.E. day. I just don’t like the idea of his filthy, smelly shoes in his bag, so I made a cute bag. Who wouldn’t, right?
So I decided a little bag would be great for this birthday boy, and even better, now I don’t have to wrap anything, because – Ta da! – present fits inside the bag. Beanie is a tad concerned about that, because “what if he doesn’t know he is supposed to keep the bag?” I told him I’m sure his mum will be able to work it out.
I sort of winged it a bit with my own bags (as you do), but Corrie over at retromummy does a great tutorial, which I mostly used this time (although I confess to winging bits of it again this time around).
The fabric is a cute flannelette I picked up at Spotlight several years ago to decorate a bed blanket, which never happened. And ever since, I’ve been using bits and pieces of it for different things. I think I have enough left for one pair of pyjama pants. Maybe.
If you make a bag like this, here are some of my tips. Make sure you iron everything first. It’s so much easier to iron all the folds in one go (lesson learned from the first episode).
Make the drawstring a little smaller than you think you need to. Mine is still a bit bulky, but it looks and works fine. I think I would taper the ends as well, just to neaten them up.
With this bag, I seamed the sides before I sewed them up, just because I am still learning my fabrics and can’t remember whether flannelette frays much or not, and since it’s going to someone else, I thought I’d better err on the side of caution. Next time, I’ll make sure that when I sew the sides together, I will sew them on the inner side, as it is a little bulky there too. Not bad, just could be a bit better.
On the bottom, I didn’t bother folding the seam, I just used the pinking shears on it, and double sewed along it, to give it a bit of extra strength in case the bag gets used for treasures like matchbox cars which weigh a ton en masse!
This is a really easy bag to make, and even with two little ones needing attention, it took less than half an hour from cut to done, so I really can’t fault that! I only wish I’d had the foresight to do half a dozen at once (who has the time, though). I think I’ll have to head to Spotlight and pick up a couple of boy and girl fabrics – or unisex, even better! – and have some bags stashed and ready to go.
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