Alison at Little Island Quilting has been one of my first and favorite blog friends! I refer to her as "Number 6" as she was one of my initial followers, after my parents, sister, a friend..... She is always so supportive and encouraging, but also has a cheeky streak which I love ;) Oh, and did I mention she makes the most fabulous quilts? Alison knows how to embrace color like no other, and can turn what seems like a mangled riot of pattern and color into a perfectly harmonized masterpiece. And lucky me- I have the pleasure of enjoying one of her beautiful quilts in my very home, when she generously hosted a quilt giveaway to support Japanese earthquake victims. Be sure to go and say hello, and while you are at it, check out her awesome take on the spiderweb pattern. So, without further ado, here is Alison and her laminate-lined PE bag!
Possibly not the most glamourous of bags, may I introduce you to the 'oh no it's not back to school already is it?' PE bag.
Please note: I made the bag the size I felt worked best for its intended use. Feel free to make it bigger or smaller.
This bag also works just fine using regular quilting weight fabric for both inner and outer pieces.
1 x piece of outside fabric - I used home decor weight and I cut the size 30 inches long by 20 inches wide
1 x piece of inside fabric - I used laminated cotton (for its wipe clean finish) which is now on sale where I got it from. It goes without saying that you CAN NOT iron/press directly on to laminate so if you are using laminate, press it with another piece of fabric on top of the laminate...bit like when you are blocking a piece of knitting and you put a damp tea towel over your knitting and then press down.
Small piece of webbing (6-8")
Pocket (optional) one inner and outer fabric piece - I made mine 6" wide and 10" long
Piece of elastic slightly longer than the length of the intended width of your pocket
Start with a clean work area:
|What do you mean"it's not clean?"|
2. Cut bag and pocket pieces to appropriate size.
3. Make the pocket. You can skip this part if you like but the reason I have added an outside pocket is this bag will be used for swimming lessons. An outside pocket is handy to store goggles, reading glasses, swim cap, earrings, watch etc. I therefore based the size of my pocket on the need for goggles to fit in it - hence why it is wider than it is taller.
Sew the two pocket pieces together along one long edge, right sides together.
Press seam open.
Flip over so you have the right side of your outside fabric facing you and stitch 1/2 an inch from the seamed edge to form a channel through which you will pass some elastic. The narrower the elastic the narrower the channel you are going to make, the wider the elastic, the wider the channel. Depending on what size elastic you have to hand you may want to adjust the 1/2 inch up or down a bit.
Next, thread your elastic through so that it is poking out a bit either end and mark one inch in from either end
Gently pull from one end so that at the other end the elastic starts to go back inside the tube; stop when you get about a 1/4 of an inch before your penciled one inch mark and sew the elastic in place
on the pencil line
Repeat with other side until you feel you have the level of elastic tightness that you are after - took tight and you won't be able to get anything in; too loose and things will fall out. Now is the time, if the urge strikes you, to embroider your child's name on the bag or the pocket. I'm going for the subtle look and sewing her name tag onto the webbing loop...more of that later.
Fold under a 1/4 inch around two sides and bottom of pocket and pin to front of bag. I chose to put it towards the bottom of the bag. When sewing the pocket, sew on the right hand side of your single fabric piece as in the next step, the bag fabric is folded in half lengthways...meaning the fabric to the left of where you have placed the pocket will become the back of the bag.
Fold inside and outside fabric in half lengthways, right sides facing and mark one inch down from the top edge of the bag, as well as two inches down.
Sew down the long side of both the inside and the outside of the bag BUT NOT in the gap between the one and two inch markings.This is going to form the casing for the drawstring for the bag. On the INSIDE BAG ONLY, leave a gap of about four to five inches somewhere along the middle of the bottom edge. If you forget this bit it'll all go pear-shaped later on.
Press all seams open. Where there is now the one inch casing gap, sew about 1/2 inch all round as in the next image. Do on both inner and outer bag.
Attach a 6" piece of webbing to the opposite side of the bag to where you have the one inch casing opening. Tip: I used a piece from the webbing that holds jelly rolls together. This will be used to hang on your child's coat peg at school if you are lucky. If you are not so lucky it'll get dumped on the cloakroom floor somewhere and you will have to go in to school at some point during the first term to personally look for it as your child will declare it has 'definitely gone missing' and 'I dunno where it is.'
Now.. this bit is crucial. The inside bag should be INSIDE OUT and the outside bag should be THE RIGHT WAY. Put the OUTSIDE bag INTO the INSIDE BAG (which is inside out).
You'll know you've got it right as when you are matching the tops of each bag together, they should both be RIGHT SIDES facing. Also make sure you have matched up the one inch hole for the casing. Pin in place and sew.
Now the fun bit. Remember the four to five inch gap you left in the inside bag? Pull the outside bag through this hole.
Stitch the four to five inch gap closed. The gap will naturally fold itself in (because of the seam allowance before and after the gap) - try to sew as close to the edge as possible. If you are using laminate cotton this will be the only time that you actually sew on the top (therefore possibly slightly sticky) of the laminate and you may need to help the fabric through as you stitch, by pulling gently from behind the needle and the sewn line in front of the needle
Make sure that both inside and outside are nicely matched up (including the casing hole) and press the top edge. Using your stitching you made for the casing as a guide, first sew the top line of casing all the way around the bag and then sew the second line.
At this point you could now get some cord, attach it to a safety pin and thread the safety pin all the way around the channel. I happened to have a spare piece of outside bag fabric left so I made it up into a co-ordinating cord and threaded this through.
And there you have it. A new school PE bag for the new school year!
Everything always looks so pristine at the beginning of a new school year. It's not going to stay like that though is it?
Thanks for the tutorial, Alison!
THIS GIVEAWAY IS NOW CLOSED
And now, for today's giveaway, we have Anna from Noodlehead. Have you had the chance to admire her latest pattern yet?
It is called the Go Anywhere bag, and it is the perfect size and shape for the busy woman on the go. The best part is all the pockets- perfect for making sure the things you need are organized and at hand when you need them.
Anna is a Bag Lady to admire, with her 241 tote, the Runaround bag, and her classic, the gathered clutch pattern. Be sure to check out her patterns page!
Anna has kindly offered up some patterns for my readers today! To enter, leave a comment telling me which is your favorite Noodlehead bag pattern. I will draw 3 lucky winners next Monday, September 5. Good luck!
THIS GIVEAWAY IS NOW CLOSED