I don’t know about you, but small items just tend to get lost in my house. I don’t know where they go, but when it comes to finding a hair bobble, a lip balm, or a safety pin or darning needle when I’m sewing, I never know where to start.
That’s why I have decided to get myself a little more organised, and make some small pouchy bags specifically for keeping all those little bits and pieces from getting lost. I thought I’d share this tutorial with you too, so you can make one yourself.
As someone who sews and knits, I mainly use these as notions pouches for my stitch markers, needles, small spools of thread and zipper feet. I find it especially handy to keep one of these close by when I’m working on a project, knowing it contains all the things I’ll need.
I also use them as little makeup bags, keeping all my essentials together in my handbag when I’m out. I can even see them being really useful when my baby is born, keeping his small things safe in my bag.
As I was making a few more for myself, I thought I’d put together a quick tutorial, so that you can make these little pouch bags yourself. Trust me, they’re really easy. This tutorial also shows you how to avoid any raw edges, both inside and outside the bag!
What you need
Some scraps of fabric. I like to use contrasting fabric on the front then heavy canvas for the lining. Here are the measurements I used, but the same principle applies to whatever size you want to make.
Lining fabric - Cut two pieces, 7” x 5”
Outer fabric (top) - Cut two pieces, 7” x 2.5”
Outer fabric (bottom) - Cut two pieces, 7” x 2.5”
One Zip, mine was a 6” metal zip
Sewing machine and contrasting thread to the fabric you’re using.
Once you’ve cut out all your fabric pieces, you need to sew the top and bottom outer pieces together, to form each side.
Lay one bottom piece on top of the top piece so that right sides are together. Pin the bottom long edge and sew down this edge on your sewing machine. I used a 3/8 seam allowance as you can see in the photo.
Do the same for the other side.
Open out the seam and press it with the seam allowances open. Don’t trim the seam allowances.
On the right side, sew two lines either side of the seam about 5mm away from the seam edge, this adds a nice contrast, but also keeps the seam allowances flat and open.
Now you need to layer up your pouch pieces.
Lay one outer piece right side up.
Open out your zip and lay it on top, face down, so that it lays alongside the raw edge of your fabric.
Lay a piece of your lining fabric on top of this, matching the raw edge. If this fabric has a right side, make sure the right side is facing downwards.
Pin along the top, through all three layers (outer fabric, zip and lining.)
Take this to your machine and sew down this top edge, using a zipper foot if you have one.
Start at the end without the zip closure, and as you move closer to the other end, zip the zip up, to move the closure out of the way.
Open out the pieces and give it a press. Then repeat the exact same procedure from steps four and five on the other side of the zip.
Next we need to sew along the edges of the bag.
To do this you need the 2 outer pieces on one side of the zip, right sides together and the two lining pieces on the other side of the zip. Take a look at the image above for more info.
Pin around the edges leaving a 2 inch gap, and sew in a straight line along all four sides. (you’ll be sewing over the ends of the zip, but not through the teeth)
Trim the edges and snip the corners to make the edges neater when we turn them out Be careful not to cut too close to the stitching.
Remember the 2 inch hole you left open? Now turn the whole pouch inside out, through the little hole, so your right sides are facing outwards.
Sew the hole closed using a whipstitch.
Push the lining back into the main compartment of the bag and press the whole thing to give you a nice straight edge.
You now have a lovely little pouchy bag, with no raw edges anywhere!
I’d love to see your finished bag, so make sure you send me a photo, or let me know if you struggled with the tutorial. I would be great to know what you use your pouch for…