I absolutely love drawstring bags, they’re so versatile! You can fill it with anything, and they don’t take up all the space that a makeup case does. It’s as small or as large as what’s inside!
I’ve been searching high and low for a set of drawstring bags that are simple yet colourful and reasonably priced. Since I couldn’t find any I liked, I decided to make my own! This is total beginner stuff but with the right fabrics you can make bags in any colour and to match anything.
What you’ll need:
For Drawstring Bags
Sewing Machine Overlocker Machine (or sewing machine with overlock function)
Cotton or Calico Fabric
Label Print-Out (here)
PART I [Preparing the tags] *Skip to Part II if you aren’t making the tags*
1. Lightly spray adhesive over your piece of paper.
2. Place it on your fabric (try to align the sides of the paper with the warp and weft of the fabric).
3. Let it air dry for a few minutes.
4. Trim the fabric along the edge of the paper. Try to cut as close as possible or even cutting into the paper because any loose bits can jam your printer.
5. Load your fabric paper into your printer tray.
6. Print out the labels! (here)
7. Let it dry for about ten minutes.
8. Peel the fabric from the paper gently (it will feel slightly sticky still but that will help you with the next few steps).
9. Cut out all the tags that you plan on using.
10. Fold in approximately 0.5cm on all four sides of the tag and press using a pressing cloth (I folded the top and bottom first then the two sides).
11. Your tags a ready to be attached!
PART II [Making the drawstring bags]
1. Cut out drawstring bag patterns. Don’t forget to cut out the FOLD notch, SEAM notch and LABEL rectangle.
2. Place the pattern on your fabric, trace around it and mark the FOLD and SEAM notches. Remember to fold your fabric in half and place the CUT ON FOLD edge on the fold of your fabric.
3. Cut out your drawstring bag rectangle (don’t cut out the notches, those are just for reference later).
4. Flip to the right side and mark the LABEL rectangle lightly on the fabric.
5. Now take your pre-prepared tag and pin it in place on the front of your bag.
6. Sew the tag in place 1-2mm from the edge.
7. Overlock all four sides with thread colour of your choice.
8. Fold the bag together so that both right sides of the fabric are facing each other.
9. Sew from the bottom of the bag to the SEAM notch, backstitching the beginning and the end to secure your seams.
10. Fold and press all four sides inwards past the SEAM notch.
11. Fold and press the top edge down on the front and back.
12. Fold the top edge down to line up with the FOLD notch and pin in place.
13. Sew 2.5cm from the top edge all the way around your bag.
14. Turn it inside out press.
*To make a grosgrain ribbon drawstring, keep reading. To make a fabric drawstring, skip to PART III.*
15. Cut two pieces of ribbon according to your bag size (Small: 35cm, Medium: 45cm, Large: 60cm)
16. Cut the both ends of your length of ribbon on an angle and seal with heat.
17. Attach a safety pin on one end of your ribbon and thread it through the first hole, going all around and coming out in the hole next to it.
18. Attach a safety pin to your other length of ribbon and starting on the opposite side, do the same thing.
19. Knot the two ends of ribbon on each side together.
20. Done! Scroll down for some fabric pairing ideas!
PART III [Making the fabric drawstring]
1. Cut two strips of fabric for your drawstring (Large Bag: 65 x 3.5cm, Medium Bag: 48 x 3cm, Small Bag: 38 x 2.5cm).
2. Fold both ends 1cm inwards and sew it flat (I sewed about 2mm from the edge).
3. Fold the strip in half lengthwise with the wrong sides facing each other and press flat.
4. Unfold it and using the fold you just made as a guide, fold both edges inwards to meet the middle fold. Press flat.
5. Fold it in half again and sew down the length of the strip 1-2mm from the edge (Remember to backstitch the beginning and the end to secure your seams).
6. Attach a safety pin to one end and thread it through your bag (instructions on threading in PART II).
7. Repeat steps 2 – 7 for the other drawstring.
Now, using these instructions and ideas you can make your bags in any colour and in a variety of sizes. Totally easy and addictive when you start making a few and seeing how great they look filled with your things!
If you loved this tutorial, come over and have a look at my new Etsy shop HERE for some pretty accessories to brighten up your life!