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Gorgeous Box Bags ~ how to make your own Box Bag ~ with a free tutorial of course!

June 4, 2012

Once Upon A Time Three Were Three Box Bags…

I fell in love with the concept of a box bag a few months ago when I came across a wordpress blog with a wonderful knitted one made with a lusciously soft grey woollen jumper. I can’t for the life of me find the original inspiration but have also been inspired by both this one at Truly Myrtle’s fantastic blog, and this one by Make It Modern on her lovely blog. I wanted elements of each of these, so tweaked their instructions to make the instructions for these ones.

I made mine using a short-sleeved jumper I picked up for £1 at a charity shop. So not only is it super soft and a lovely, subdued colour, it’s also a bit of upcyling yet again! As ever, here is a free tutorial too on how to make your own box bag with a slideshow of step-by-step photos below to help you along.

Materials Needed

  • 2 x outer fabric bag (10″ x 8″ for large bag ~ 9″ x 7″ for medium bag ~ 7.5″ x 6″ for small bag)
  • 2 x lining fabric bag (as above)
  • 2 x medium- or heavy-weight interfacing (slightly smaller than the above measurements – to avoid bulking up at the seams)
  • Scraps of the lining fabric for the two tabs (ca. 3″ x 2″)
  • Handle (ca. 6″ x 2″ each of outer fabric, lining fabric and slightly smaller for the interfacing)
  • Zip (8″, 10″and 12″ respectively)

How To Make Your Own Box Bag

  1. Cut out your pieces. The longer measurement is the one that will be next to your zip. I wanted the ridged bit of the jumper on both sides of the zip where possible, so bear that in mind when cutting your pieces.
  2. Iron on the interfacing onto the WS of the lining fabric.
  3. Fold over one long edge of each piece of fabric to form a hem (unless you’ve used the edge of a jumper so it won’t unravel anyway), and pin it onto the zip (with the folds out of sight). Stitch these in place.
  4. Fold the RS of the outer fabric together and stitch the remaining long edges together.
  5. Repeat with the lining fabric (with interfacing), but backstitch a couple of times to leave a 4″ single-stitch in the middle – you’ll need this later.
  6. Stretch the outer fabric over the lining fabric to form a tube. One of the joys of working with jersey is that this is easy to do with no crinkles and wrinkles.
  7. Make the tabs for each end of the zip. I’m lazy with this, so I just fold the long edges of each scrap in a tiny bit, place a small bit of interfacing inside, fold it over in half, and then press.
  8. With the loop of the tab facing inwards, place the tab over the zip about ½” in from the raw edges. Sew in place.
    • Ignore the very dodgy edges in the photo of this one – basically I stupidly cut off the extra ends of the zip before sewing them closed, and pulled the zip bit straight off! The whole zip was undone, and very, very tricky to put back on and fix the teeth back together. I very nearly gave up, but finally managed to get it back on, but it was very wonky and the ends didn’t match up. So, I hashed it all up to re-align the edges of the fabric – hence why this box bag (the smallest one) ended up being that much smaller than originally planned! Oh, the Shame!
  9. Open the zip half-way.
  10. Turn the bag back inside out and fold flat again so that the zip lies in the centre. Press flat.
  11. Starting ½” in from the raw edges, sew each of the four short edges (two of each fabric) closed and over the zip making sure that you a) don’t sew the other fabric in at the same time and b) sew as close to the tab sewn edge as possible to make a neat finish when the bag is the right way round.
  12. Pick up each corner by the tip and, with the sewn seam in the middle,  flatten it down to form a triangle. Using a ruler, mark along the base of each triangle (ca. 1.5″ depending on the size of your fabric) and stitch along each of these triangles.
  13. Now cut two of the triangles off! Not just any two, but two from the main fabric at one end.
  14. Create the handle by placing the outer and lining fabric RS together and stitching the long edges together. Turn it the right way round and slip the interfacing in and press (doing it this way means you’re not double-stitching through bulk, and makes it much easier to turn without the annoying crinkles). Don’t worry about the raw ends _ they’ll be hidden away.
  15. With the lining fabric of the bag on top, insert the handle into one of the cut-open holes and out the other (with the lining fabric of the handle facing towards the end of the bag). Push the main bit of the handle up inside the bag and with the raw edges of the bag and the handle together, re-sew the cut-open holes closed. It looks really messy at this stage, but you will get there!
  16. Unpick the single stitch (between the double stitching) of the inner fabric to give yourself a 4″ gap for turning. Now pull everything carefully through the gap, and then handstitch the gap closed again. It should be nice and easy as it will have been pressed flat, so the hems are already in place.
  17. Ta Daaah! You’re Done ~ Made By Yours Truly ! Now sit back and stuff your gorgeous box bags full of lovely things.

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. June 5, 2012 13:30

    MUST DO!!! Thanks so much for the detailed tutorial! 🙂

  2. June 15, 2013 14:05

    lovely tutorials, thanks for sharing 🙂

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