Introducing the true bag-a-holic’s bag with room for absolutely everything! This versatile carry-all could be used as an oversized handbag, a project bag or a super stylish changing bag. With a large zipped front pocket and a generous double pocket inside, you can secure any precious items while the main bag remains easily accessible.
You will need
- 75cm (30in) cream home décor weight fabric for bag front, back and lining
- 25cm (10in) green print fabric for front zipped pocket
- 33cm (13in) blue spot fabric for bag top and base
- 89cm (35in) brown text fabric for handles, internal pocket and closure
- 2m (21⁄4yd) lightweight fusible fleece
- 9 x 56cm (31⁄2 x 22in) heavy iron-on interfacing
- Zip, at least 28cm (11in) in length
- Large green button
Finished size : 50 x 48cm (20 x 183⁄4in) including handles
- Trace all of the Cute Carry-All templates (see Pattern Pullout Sheet) onto tracing paper or template plastic, transferring all the markings and cutting them out around the traced lines.
- From the cream home décor weight fabric, trace the main bag template four times and cut out along the traced lines.
- From the green print fabric, cut two pieces measuring 25 x 27.5cm (10 x 11in) and another two pieces measuring 25 x 8cm (10 x 31⁄4in).
- From the blue spot fabric, cut one strip measuring 11.5 x 55cm (41⁄2 x 22in). Trace the bag top template four times onto the remaining fabric and cut out along the traced lines.
- From the brown text print fabric, trace the main bag template twice and cut out along the traced lines to make the internal pocket. For the handles, cut eight strips measuring 6.5 x 64cm (21⁄2 x 251⁄4in). Cut another strip measuring 4.5 x 14cm (13⁄4 x 51⁄2in) for the button closure.
- From the lightweight fusible fleece, cut a piece measuring 25 x 27.5cm (10 x 11in) and another measuring 25 x 8cm (10 x 31⁄4in). Now cut one strip measuring 9 x 55cm (31⁄2 x 22in) and eight more strips measuring 6.5 x 60cm (21⁄2 x 231⁄2in) for the handles. Trace the main bag template once and cut out along the traced lines for the internal pocket. Set aside any remaining fabric.
- Take one each of the green print panels, one of the brown pocket pieces and all of the handle strips and interface these with your matching lightweight fusible fleece pieces. You will notice that the handle fleece is shorter than the fabric strips – this is intentional. Interface so that the fleece starts at one end edge but does not cover the full length at the other end.
I enjoyed playing with a fun combination of fabrics on this project. Feel free to play and have fun or alternatively be as co-ordinated as you like!
5mm (1⁄4in) seam allowance included.
1). Place the two 25 x 27.5cm (10 x 11in) pieces of green print fabric on top of each other, right sides together. Create a sandwich by placing the centred zip in-between these two pocket layers along one 25cm (10in) edge. The interfaced fabric panel should be positioned right sides together with the zip. Pin in place then sew together with the zipper foot, as shown below. Open the fabric away from the zip, press and topstitch (see Useful Stitches).
2). Place the two 25 x 8cm (10 x 31⁄4in) pieces of green print fabric on top of each other, right sides together. Place the remaining side of the zip between these two pocket layers along one 25cm (10in) edge. Making sure that the interfaced piece is right sides together with the zip and this sandwich is equally in line with the layers sewn in Step 1 below, pin and then sew together with your zipper foot. Open the fabric away from the zip, press and topstitch.
3). Making sure that the zip pull is within the pocket section, secure the ends of the zip close to the edge of the fabric with some backward and forward stitches, as shown below. Trim the excess zip at the pocket edge.
4). Place one of the cream main bag pieces right side up on your work surface. Position the pocket panel centrally on top of this and machine tack (baste) around all four edges (see Useful Stitches).
5). Take one of the blue bag top pieces and place it on top of the bag front, right sides together. The bottom straight edge of the bag top should meet the top edge of the main bag piece with pocket. Sew in place and press. Interface the complete bag front with the remaining fusible fleece and topstitch the bag top seam. Repeat with the remaining three main bag and bag top pieces.
If the pocket panel is a little higher than the main bag piece, simply trim away any excess.
6). Take two of the brown handle strips and sew them together along the short ends with fleece. Repeat with the remaining six handle strips so that you now have four interfaced strips measuring 127 x 6.5cm (50 x 21⁄2in).
7). Place two of the handle strips on top of each other, right sides together. Sew together along three edges, leaving one of the short ends open. Turn right side out (see Turning Handles), trim the sewn end and press well.
8). Place the bag front on your work surface, right side up. Pin the handle into position as shown below, so that it covers the side seams of the pocket panel. Both raw ends of the handle should meet the bottom raw edge of the bag front. Topstitch the handle into place, stopping approximately 1.5cm (1⁄2in) up from the bag top seam.
9). Fold the remaining unattached handle section onto itself along the entire length. Topstitch the handle in this folded position, starting and ending 4cm (11⁄2in) from where the handle is attached to the bag front. Topstitch a line of stitches parallel to the first line of topstitching every 3mm (1⁄8in), as shown in the photograph below, to give strength to the strap. Repeat Steps 7–9 with the bag back.
10). Place the bag front and back pieces on top of each other, right sides together. Sew together along the bottom edge only.
11). To make the bag base panel, iron the 9 x 55cm (31⁄2 x 22in) piece of fusible fleece to the centre of the 11.5 x 55cm (41⁄2 x 22in) blue spot fabric panel so you have 1.5cm (1⁄2in) of fabric on either side of the fleece. Fuse the heavy interfacing evenly over the fleece for extra thickness and strength. Fold the extra 1.5cm (1⁄2in) of fabric on both sides over the edges of the interfacing and press in place.
Topstitching multiple lines of stitching at close intervals along a handle creates a fabulously strong handle. Why not try this on other bag patterns to add extra strength?
12). Open the main bag out and lay it flat, right side up, so that the bottom seam is lying flat on your work surface. Centre the base panel, right side up, over the seam as shown below, so that 4.5cm (13⁄4in) of the base will go over the bag front and 4.5cm (13⁄4in) over the bag back. Make sure the folded under 1.5cm (1⁄2in) on both sides of the base panel remains underneath. Pin in place and topstitch onto the bag along both edges.
13). Position the bag front and back right sides together so both the top edges and side edges meet evenly. Sew the sides together, starting at the top edge and ending when you reach the base panel.
14). Keeping the bag inside out, follow the box corner technique (see Box Corners), sewing across where the triangle measures 9cm (31⁄2in) – from one edge of the base panel to the other. Repeat for the other corner. Trim the excess fabric approximately 1.5cm (1⁄2in) outside the sewn line.
15). Place the two brown pocket pieces right sides together and sew together along the top straight edge. Open right
sides out, press and topstitch along the top sewn edge with two rows of stitching.
16). Take one of the bag lining pieces and place it right side up on your work surface. Position the internal pocket on top of this so that the side and bottom raw edges all meet. Sew the pocket neatly into place along the side and bottom edges. Sew a line of topstitching from top to bottom down the centre of the bag to create a divided pocket if desired.
The fabric in the corners will be very thick, so take care with your needle and sew over the stitching a few times for
17). Place both bag lining pieces on top of each other, right sides together. Sew together along the side and bottom edges, leaving a 20cm (8in) gap in the centre of the bottom edge for turning. Keeping the lining bag inside out, follow the box corner technique (see Box Corners), sewing across where the triangle measures 9cm (31⁄2in). Repeat for the other corner.
18). Take the 4.5 x 14cm (13⁄4 x 51⁄2in) fabric button closure strip and fold this in half along the length, right side out. Press, then turn the raw edges into the centre fold and press again. Topstitch the loose edges of the strip together to secure. Fold the strip in half, forming a triangle at the fold to create a loop and topstitch the triangle to secure, as seen below.
19). Place the button closure loop right sides together at the centre top of the lining back (with pocket) so that the raw edges meet. Machine tack (baste) in place.
20). Keeping the main bag right side out and the bag lining right side in, place the main bag inside the lining bag. Push the handles inside the two layers so that they are well clear of the top edge and pin all the way around the top edge. Carefully sew all the way around the top of the bag, catching the closure in this seam. Turn the bag right side out through the hole in the bottom of the lining and push the lining inside the main bag. Topstitch along the top bag edge.
21). Sew the button in the desired position at the centre top of the bag front, accessing this through the gap in the lining. Ladder stitch the turning gap closed (see Useful Stitches).
Have fun with your button selections – you will be surprised by how much added appeal they can give your favourite bag designs.
Sew Cute to Carry
12 Stylish bag patterns for handbags, purses & totes