This is a wash bag tutorial which has so many variations that are useful and adaptable it's definitely one worth trying.
In our next Blog, we will be making a duffel bag, this plus a toilet bag will make a great gift. This tutorial is downloadable so you can keep it and write all over it as you make changes to suit your project. The size lends itself to other uses, for instance, a lunch bag, it is large enough to take a small flask or bottle and has more than enough space for the food. If your children play football, it is ideal for their boots. As this is a tutorial which uses fabric measured pieces and no pattern, it can be upscaled or downscaled. You can even store your portable camping stove in one of these. Enough jabbering now to the tutorial...
Wash Bag ~ Materials needed: This wash bag was made using Batik Fabric from Croft Mill
Main fabric for the outside of the bag: 42cm X 56cm
Waterproof lining fabric – lightweight fabrics: 42cm X 56cm
Iron-on stabilizer/interfacing fabric for the main fabric: 42cm X 56cm
A strip of fabric for the handle: 30cm X 6cm
A strip of iron on stabilise/interfacing for the handle: 30cm X 6cm
1x 42+cm zip – you can trim a longer zip down.
Pins, scissors, sewing machine, thread.
Get things together
Start with cutting your fabrics to the sizes mentioned above, and cutting the stabilizer/interfacing to size for the main and handle.
*** A Note: do not iron the waterproof fabric***
Step 1: Iron the stabilizer to the wrong side of the main fabric ( this is not the waterproof lightweight fabric but the outer fabric) and to the wrong side of the handle strip.
Step 2: Fold and iron the handle strip in half lengthways, open up and press each raw edge to the centre line, iron flat. Fold in half again lengthways and iron. You now have a 30cm X1.5cm strip.
Step 3: Top Stitch the handle strip by sewing three rows of stitching as shown in the picture. Set aside for later.
Putting The Zip In
Step 4: Lie the lining right side up. Place the zip along the short end with the zipper pull facing upwards.
Step 5: Place the right side downward short end of the main fabric along this same zip making a sandwich of the lining fabric, zip and main fabric. Sew along this end securing the layers together using your sewing machine’s zipper foot.
Step 6: Fold the layers back, press down with your fingers, and top stitch ( stitch length 3-3.5) along the zip top.
Step 7: Lay the fabric down with the zip in the middle and the lining to one side and the main fabric right side up to the other. With the zipper pull facing down on the main fabric, pint the short side of the lining to the back of the zip.
Last steps for putting the zip in
Step 8: Pick it up and the lining “bag” should fall behind the wrong side of the main fabric. Lay it flat like that and pin the right side of the main fabric to the zip with the zipper pull facing up. Sew this sandwich together using the zipper foot.
Step 9: You should now have two hanging “bags”, put your hand through the main fabric from the zipper pull end and grab the main fabric layer and the two lining layers and pull them through the main fabric “bag”. You should now have the main fabric “bag” with a lining “bag” inside it.
Let us start putting it all together
Step 10: Open the zip, finger press the fabric down and topstitch ( stitch length 3 - 3.5) the fabric as you did with the other side.
Step 11: Lay your project flat with the zip on the top and equal sections to either side. See picture. Pin securely and finger press as flat as possible making sure that the lining fabric is not bunching or folded inside. Now measure 5cm wide and 4,5cm high in each corner and cut them out.
Step 12: This is where we start putting it all together. Unpin the layers, once again put your hand in the tube and pull the lining through so you have two “bags” once again. Lay it flat just as before when you were cutting the corners. Now line up the layers as following, lining at the bottom, zipper top and then the unzippered main fabric side facing the zippered side. Take care matching the pieces. See picture.
Step 13: Pin the bottom end of the zip side to match shape. Taking the handle you made earlier place it halfway between the zip and the cut end facing into the “bag”. Do this on both sides making a nice handle curve which will be inside the layers. Open the zipper a bit so that it will be on the inside of the sewing line. If it is not you will not be able to open your bag. Pin the end as the bottom.
Sewing the side seams
Step 14: Sew both ends, about 1.5cm from the edge, go slowly and carefully over the zip as this can break your needle. I used stitch length 2.5 and sewed these ends twice as it is going to take the most wear. Snip the zip ends.
Step 15: This is the patience step. Turn the “bag” inside out through one of the holes you cut earlier. Slowly and gently it will come through. : )
Step 16: Open and re-align one of the cut corners so the short-end seam aligns with the centre of the side. Make sure all layers are well aligned. This will create a boxed corner. Stitch the raw edges with a 5mm seam. Trim the edges.
Horay Nearly done!
Step 17: Turn the bag inside out. Push out the four boxed corners that you have just sewn pin each one. Stitch each boxed corner with a 5mm seam, finishing the french seams and enclosing all raw edges.
Step 18: Turn right side out and see what a great toilet bag you have made.
Our next BLOG is going to be making a duffel bag. We thought that together with a matching wash bag, it would be an ideal gift for someone. The fabrics we will be using are discussed on our ABOUT FABRIC pages. Please take a look as there are more ideas for bags. Our Pinterest page is also full of great ideas and patterns.