Instead of wasteful paper sacks, send your little ones to school in style and make your own reusable fabric lunch bag! This is also a great project for adding decorative applique or embroidery elements.
Here’s what you’ll need:
❤ ½ yard of fabric – sturdier fabric will make a sturdier bag
❤ matching thread
❤ scissors or rotary cutter
❤ ruler and/or measuring tape
❤ sewing machine
❤ 1-2 inches of velcro
Here’s how to make it:
- Iron your fabric.
- Decide how wide you want your bag. Between 6 and 8 inches is a good size.
- Decide how deep you want your bag. Between 3 to 5 inches is a good depth.
- Take your width measurement and add double your depth measurement. This is how wide you will want to cut two pieces of your fabric. So if you want a 6 inch wide bag that is about 3 inches deep, you will cut two pieces of fabric that are each 12 inches wide.
- Regardless of width, each piece should be cut to 15 ½ inches tall.
- At the bottom left and right of each piece of fabric, cut out a square at each corner that is equal to half your desired bag depth. If my desired bag depth is 3 inches, then each square I cut out from the bottom left and right will be 1 ½ inches x 1 ½ inches.
- NOTE: If you prefer not to do math, make each piece of fabric 11 inches wide x 15 ½ inches tall and your bottom square cut outs 2 inches x 2 inches each. This will make a finished bag that is about 7 wide by 4 inches deep.
- Pin your two pieces of fabric together, right sides in. Make sure to keep the cutout squares aligned.
- With a ½ inch seam allowance, sew along the bottom, then along the left side and the right side. Do NOT sew along the area around the cutout squares.
- Expand the bottom of the bag, grabbing the front and back of a square cutout by the corners and gently pulling them away from one another. The bottom seam should now be on top of the side seam, and what was formerly the right angle of the cutout square should now be a straight line. Repeat for the other side.
- Pin the two raw edges where the bottom meets the side in place.
- Sew each with a ½ inch seam allowance.
- Turn the bag right side out.
- Create a rolled hem at the top of the bag by turning the top edge under a ½ inch, then turn under again another half inch.
- Sew all around the top with a ¼ inch seam allowance.
- Thinking of how you would fold closed the top of a paper lunch sack, fold down the top of the bag about 1 inch.
- Pin one side of your velcro in the middle of this fold.
- Roll down the top once more, and note where the other piece of velcro should be positioned so that it aligns with the first piece. Pin the other piece of velcro in position to the body of the bag.
- Sew each piece of velcro securely in place.