Handmade Cotton Bag
By using two attractive, contrasting fabrics, you'll have the benefit of a fully reversible bag to fit your mood or style. This double thickness also makes the bag much stronger. The pretty patchwork fabric creates an extra level of work, but if you want to simplify things slightly, you can use a single piece of fabric instead.
- an old gingham tablecloth, or similar material, for the lining
- scraps of cotton fabric, cut into squares and rectangles of various sizes and sewn into a large piece of patchwork, with all the seams pressed flat using an iron
- sewing machine (optional)
- cotton thread and needle
- Download: Cotton Bag Pattern
Make up the templates according to the size you want the bag to be, and cut out two bag shapes from each piece of fabric so that you have four bag shapes altogether. Then cut two base shapes from each piece of fabric.
Lay one patchwork shape on top of a gingham shape, correct sides facing inward. Stitch the curved edges only together on each side. Repeat with the other two shapes.
Align the half-sewn shapes, with the patchwork on the outside. Lift the gingham. Sew the patchwork's straight sides. Sew on the patchwork base, correct side facing inward.
Lift the patchwork. Sew one straight side of gingham fabric. Partly sew the other side, leaving a gap of 6 inches. Sew on the gingham base, correct side facing inward.
Push all the fabrics through the gap in the gingham material to turn them the right way around. The seams should now all be hidden.
Hand-sew the gap in the gingham fabric. The fabric shapes should now all be joined together, apart from the handle. Sew the patchwork handle ends together.
Turn the handle over. Neatly sew the gingham handle ends together so that no seams show. You should now have one large handle and a complete, reversible bag.