'Diggers' Drawstring Bag
Project by Paula Milner- The Crafty Lass
You Will Need:
Fabric: outer bag fabric, inner lining and fabric for pockets – see measurements below
Ribbon: width smaller than 1cm (½in) wide and minimum 84cm (33in) long
Iron and ironing board
Large safety pin
Make these fun and simple to make lined drawstring bags!
How to Make:
1. Choose and Measure
Select which fabrics you would like for the main outer bag, lining and pockets. You could have a different lining to the outer, different pockets – and even a different front and back – it’s completely up to you!
Measure out your fabric. You will need:
Cut two 36cm (14.1in) x 48cm (18.9in) for the bag outer (one for the back and one for the front)
Cut two 36cm (14.1in) x 48cm (18.9in) for the inner lining (one for the back and one for the front)
Cut two 20cm (7.8in) x 20cm (7.8in) for the front larger pocket
Cut two 14cm (5.5in) x 10cm (3.9in) the smaller front pocket
2. Bag Outer - Marking
On the wrong side of the bag front, mark the casing position: measure down the side edges by 6cm (2¼in) from the top and mark on either side. Mark down a further 2cm (¾in). At the bottom of the bag front also measure up the side edges by 2cm (¾in) and then a further 2cm (¾in). This will be where the ribbons will later be inserted to form the bag handles.
3. Bag Outer - Sewing
Place the bag front and back right sides together and, taking a 1cm (½in) seam allowance, stitch the side seams from the top edge to the first mark. Backstitch to secure the stitching. Start stitching again at the second mark, leaving the casing section unstitched. Again, backstitch at the start to secure the stitching, then continue towards the bottom of the bag until you meet your first bottom mark. Backstitch to secure the stitching. Start stitching again at the second mark - again, backstitch at the start to secure the stitching, leaving the gap between unstitched. At the bottom of the bag, pivot with the needle down and stitch bottom edge. Pivot again at the second corner then stitch the second side edge as the first, leaving the gap at the bottom and casing section unstitched.
4. Bag Outer – Casing Part 1.
To make the first part of the casing, turn under the top edge by 5cm (2in) and press. Stitch all the way round, just below the open seam section at the side edges. You will later stitch a parallel row of above the first row to create your channel (see below) but this will happen once the ribbons are inserted and the lining has gone inside.
5. Pockets – Part 1 Sewing.
With both of the pockets – put the right sides together and using a 1cm (½in) seam allowance, stitch all the way around leaving a small gap to turn the fabrics out the right way around. Push the corners out and press. The gap for turning should ideally be on either the sides or bottom of the pocket.
6. Pockets – Part 2 Sewing together
Place the smaller front pocket on to the larger pocket in the centre and pin in to position. Stitch along one side, along the bottom and up the other side to create the pocket.
7. Pockets – Part 3 Placing
Turn your outer bag the right way out. Place your now sewn together pocket pieces on to the bag outer front in the centre and pin into position. As above, stitch along one side, along the bottom and up the other side to create the now double pocket. You could do this prior to even making the bag outer – but it feels easier to ensure you have your pockets in the correct position once initially constructed.
Cut your piece of ribbon or cord into two equal lengths. This will need to be just over the same length as the width of the bag + the height of the bag around 84cm (33in). Using a safety pin, feed one end of the ribbon through the gap of the casing – push all the way around and out the same side. Then, push both ends of the ribbon through the gap at the bottom of the bag. On the inside, stitch over the gap/ribbons to secure them into place. Feed the second piece of ribbon from the other side edge, again all the way around, and then repeat by pushing through the gap at the bottom of the bag and on the inside, stitch over the gap/ribbons to secure them into place.
9. Inner Lining
Place the bag front and back right sides together and, taking a 1cm (½in) seam allowance, stitch the side seams from the top edge to the bottom of the bag. Pivot with the needle down and stitch along the bottom edge. Pivot again at the second corner then stitch up the second side edge as the first. Turn under the top edge by 5cm (2in) and press. Place inside the bag outer and line up the pressed edges together. Pin into position.
10. Casing Part 2
Finally stitch both the outer bag and the inner lining together with a parallel row of stitches 2.5cm (1in) above the first row to create your channel – ensuring not to trap the ribbons inside.
Et voila! A drawstring bag with double pockets… Enjoy!
To see more from Paula follow her on Instagram @thecraftylass.
The Crafty Lass®
This tutorial was inspired by ‘Drawstring Bags’ from ‘Fun with Fat Quarters’ by Wendy Gardiner – Searchpress.
Made by Paula Milner for The Craft Cotton Co 2022.