Today I’m sharing with you a really easy pattern for making bags with a bit of a box to them. The trick is to cut squares in each corner of your bag piece, which you’ll sew up to make your box shape. This gives you a basket type finish which makes it so much easier to pack – it’s great for when you are grocery shopping or, as I made mine for, organising the boot (or trunk for my North American followers) of your car. They are fully lined, reversible, and look really stylish even when they’re not being used – they’re an absolute winner! I made this one from cotton twill; it’s strong, durable and is easy to wash.
They are so quick to make; to have a go yourself, you’ll need:
- 2 x 1 metre squares of your chosen fabric – one for the outer and one inner
- 2 x rectangles measuring 80cm x 16cm for your handles (in either fabric)
- Matching or contrasting thread
- Tape measure
- Tailors Chalk (or pencil)
- Set Square, T Square, or Perspex Patchwork Ruler to get the perfect right angle
- Iron and ironing board
- Sewing machine
- Carefully cut our your three rectangles
- On your two large rectangles that will be the main body of the bag, cut out a square in each corner of each rectangle measuring 25cm x 25cm
- For each of your handle rectangles, fold them in half lengthways (with the right side facing outwards) and press the fold. Open this back up and fold both edges into the centre fold and press (if you were to open it back out, it should look like you have three folds, splitting your rectangle into quarters lengthways). Fold the handle in half lengthways on your original fold so the raw edges are contained within the folds and press again to keep your folds in place
Assembling your bag
- Take one of your bag rectangles. With the right sides together, match up the two 25cm edges on one of the cut out corners and pin in place
- Using a straight stitch and a 1.5 cm seam allowance, sew along this line
- Repeat for the other three corners
- Repeat these three steps with the other bag rectangle
- Turn your outer so the right side is facing outwards, do the opposite with the inner. If you place the inner inside the outer, the stitches from you making the corners will be hidden
- Press the boxes with a hot iron to iron in the creases along each edge and place the inner back inside the outer – don’t worry, we’ll come back to the raw edges at the top of the bag in a moment
- Put your bag to one side as we’ll need to sew the handles next
- Using a quarter inch (or 0.5cm) seam allowance, sew a straight line of stitches on both long edges of each handle – this will keep the folds in place and give you a professional finish – I would recommend sewing the side with two folds first, and the side with one fold second.
- Turn the raw edges at the top of the bag in towards each other by 2cm, press to hold the crease and pin them together
- Slip the ends of the handles into the space between the inner and outer and position your handles and pin in place (Top Tip: measure in from the side of the bag on both sides to make sure your handles are identically placed and balanced) You’ll want your handles to be inside the bag by about 10cm and you may need to unpin and repin a bit of your bag top if needed to slot your handles in
- Using a quarter inch (or 0.5cm) seam allowance, sew a straight line of stitches around the bag top (this will secure your handles and hold the folded under section in place – again, this gives a really professional finish
So there you have it, all you need is half an hour and you’ll have organised yourself with a box shaped bag!
If you like this post, have you seen my Homemade Fabric Shopper post? It’s a great make!
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