Making a fabric bag is easy and can be sold too. When I started making fabric bags about 3 years ago the instructions I found on the web were a little confusing. But with a little determination I was able to figure out how to make a fabric bag and have been making and selling them ever since.
Things You'll Need
- Sewing Machine
- Other sewing utensils
Select your fabric. Choose the fabric you want for the body of the bag and coordinate fabric for the lining. I love this step. I can stay in the fabric store for hours just looking and feeling the fabric. My daughters hate it they like to wait in the car.
Cut fabric from your template or pattern. I usually make my own pattern but when I started making purses I bought almost every purse pattern only to realize I didn't need one. Cut out the body of the bag, inside lining and straps. Cut the same pieces out from your interfacing as well.
Apply interfacing to your fabric. This makes your bag stiffer and more durable. I use craft fuse for my lining and sew on interfacing. This project calls for the iron on interfacing. You will iron the shining side down on to the wrong side of the fabric. You should have all pieces now with interfacing, body of purse, lining, and straps.
Straps--Press and fold your strap in half length wise with your iron. Once you have a nice fold open the fold and bring raw edges into the fold line and press in place. Fold new edges together (you can press with iron) and stitch along the new edge length wise to close up fold and to make your strap.
Sew the body of your bag together with a 5/8 seam allowance. You should have sides and bottom sewn and the top of bag not sewn. You will repeat for your coordinating lining except you will leave a opening in the bottom of the lining. In order words don't sew all the way across the bottom of the lining. Sew 3-4 inches from each corner, leaving an opening in the middle big enough for your entire bag to come through(will explain later)
Make your corners of the bag. With fabric bag still on the wrong side (side with interfacing showing) open the bag and squeeze together the corners lining up the seams of the bottom of the bag and the side of the bag. It should look like a triangle. Stitch across the top of the triangle about 1 1/2 inch. The deeper the stitch the wider the bottom of the bad will be. Repeat for the other corner. See photo. Flip bag inside out. For the next step you are working with your the body of the bag right side out.
Apply your finished straps to the back and front of the bag. Measure 2-4 inches from the middle of your purse to pin your strap. Your strap should look like a "U" with the ends of the strap touching the top of the bag. Stitch straps in place 2-3 times to reinforce.
Putting your bag together. At this point you should have the outside bag with straps attached and the lining bag with no straps. The outside bag is right side out and the lining is right side in. Place the outside bag (body) inside the lining making sure the straps and tucked down in the bag. Work it until all fits neatly in place with side seams together. Stitch all around top of purse with a 5/8 seam allowance.
Pull the body of the bag through the hole in your lining. At first this was so confusing for me because in my opinion the instructions I had weren't very clear. Now having to make my own instructions the only way I can explain it is pulling your bag through the hole in the lining. You are flipping your bag where the body of the bag will be outside and the lining will be inside. Once the body of the bag in completely pulled through the hole of the lining tuck the lining inside the body of the bag.
Top stitch around the top of the bag to give it a nice finishing touch and stitch the lining in place inside the bag. Great job! Where it well.