Tuesday, 13 March 2012

Sewing Tuesday: Decorated bag for Mother's Day.

Well hello!
This week I'm going to show you how to make a draw string bag like this one here:

I made this for my mum for a mother's day present, it's this Sunday coming up. My mum likes gardening so I decorated the bag with seeds. She can keep her seed packets inside it maybe. You could decorate your bag differently if your mum doesn't like gardening. Most mums have something they like doing, maybe she has lots of jewellery or likes to eat sweets. You could decorate your bag with anything your mum likes!

You will need:

  • Cloth to make your bag with. I have an old pillowcase that my puppy chewed a hole in. I cut a piece of cloth around 40cm by 15cm but you can make your bag any size you like.
  • Background felt, mine's white and around 10cm by 7cm. 
  • Bits of felt for decorating.
  • Around 40cm of ribbon.
  • Thread to match your bag, felt and ribbon. 
  • Pencil and paper.
  • Safety pin or paper clip.
  • Needle.
  • Pins.
  • Scissors.
  • Pinking shears, don't worry if you don't have these just try to choose cloth that doesn't fray too much to make your bag.

Step 1.
Have a go at drawing what you bag might look like before you start making it. I always find that drawing something first makes it turn out better in the end. Have a look online or in a book for ideas if you want to. I searched for 'seeds' using google and drew some pictures of them.
Here's the picture I liked the best:

Step 2.
Draw your lettering on to your background felt in pencil, you should just be able to see where I've written the word 'Seeds'. You could write 'Mum's Sweets' or 'Buttons' or anything you like, maybe just 'Mum'.

Stitch over the pencil lines you drew using backstitch. If you aren't sure how to sew, have a look at the GETTING STARTED post at the top right of the blog.

Keep going all the way around your letters.

Cut out some shapes from your felt, mine are seeds, your shapes might be trumpets or bookmarks, depending on what your mum likes.

Here's mine with all different seeds sewn and stitched on. I used some yellow thread to sew some of the seeds as that will make my ribbon match the rest of the bag.

Step 3.
Fold your bag cloth in half like in the picture below. Pin your decorated felt on to the front side only.

Sew around the edge of the felt using overstitch like this:

When you've sewn all the way around, fold your bag up like this with the decoration on the inside. My bag has a seam across the bottom as it used to be a pillow case. Your bag might not have this seam here.

Put a few pins in to hold it still, using your pinking shears if you have them, cut around the left, top and right of the bag, leaving the bottom.

Fold down and pin about 2cm of the top of the bag on each side. Make sure you fold down around double the width of your ribbon. This will be the ribbon tube for you to thread your ribbon through.

Sew along close to the cut edge of the folded top with backstitch or use a sewing machine if you have one. Here's what it should look like.

Fold the bag the right way around like the picture below and pin it so that it can't move around. 

Sew up each side to just beyond the stitch line on the ribbon tube. Leave the ribbon tube open at the sides like this:

Step 4.
Tie the ribbon on to the paper clip or pin your safety pin through the end of it. Push the pin/clip in to the ribbon tube.

Work it along inside the tube until it comes out the other end. Take your time, this bit is fiddly.

Pop it back in to the ribbon tube on the other side of the bag like this:

When the pin/clip comes out this time you can take it off the ribbon. Here's what it should look like:

Cut out some larger shapes from you felt to go on to the end of the ribbon. These stop it from getting pulled back through the tube by accident. I cut out two brown and two cream seed shapes. Your shapes might be apples or flowers, depending on what your mum likes.
Sandwich the end of the ribbon between the two shapes and running stitch around the edge to hold them together.

You're done! Happy Mother's Day! 



  1. That is so cute! Just adorable! I am going to have to make one! Thanks for sharing! I repinned it and I tweeted it for you! Have wonderful day!
    Following you too!

  2. It´s a great tutorial. Thank you for sharing
    Hugs from Spain