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Handmade Cotton Bag

This bucket bag is incredibly useful — it's perfect for taking to the beach and can be your go-to carryall when you're shopping.

Excerpted from A Greener Christmas
Cotton Bucket Bag Is ReversibleDK - A Greener Christmas © 2008 Dorling Kindersley Limited

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.

Materials Needed:

  • templates
  • 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
  • an old gingham tablecloth, or similar material, for the lining
  • scissors

Step 1

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.

Cut All Pieces For Bag From Each Piece Of FabricDK - A Greener Christmas © 2008 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Step 2

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.

Sew Cotton Bucket Bag Pieces TogetherDK - A Greener Christmas © 2008 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Step 3

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.

Align Shapes And Sew Pieces Of Fabric To Form BagDK - A Greener Christmas © 2008 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Step 4

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.

Sew And Attach Gingham Side Of Cotton BagDK - A Greener Christmas © 2008 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Step 5

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.

Turn Fabrics Through Gap To Hide SeamsDK - A Greener Christmas © 2008 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Step 6

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.

Hand Sew Gap In Gingham FabricDK - A Greener Christmas © 2008 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Step 7

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.

Sew Gingham Handle So That No Seams ShowDK - A Greener Christmas © 2008 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Excerpted from A Greener Christmas

© Dorling Kindersley Limited 2008

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