Make Your Own Reuseable Lunchbag – Tutorial

Lunchbags in Batik, Green Stripe, and Brown

I am teaching my daughter Deirdre to sew, and I wanted to come up with a project that was simple to make, but something that we would use.  So, we came up with these easy-to-make lunch bags made out of washable, cotton fabric.  The secret is that we used enclosed seams (A.K.A French seams) so that they won’t fray in the wash.  The bags don’t use much fabric, so they are a great project if you pick up some colorful, inexpensive remnants at your local fabric store.  The three bags in the picture will be a gift for Daddy’s birthday from Deirdre.  If you’d like to make your own, just follow these simple instructions!

  1. Cut a piece of fabric measuring 28″ by 9″ (if your remnant is not long enough, cut 2 pieces 14 1/2″ by 9″, and sew an extra seem in the middle)
  2. Cut 2 pieces of fabric about 1″ by 10″ for the ties.
  3. To make the enclosed seam, fold fabric in half with wrong sides together and stitch sides with 1/4″ seam allowance.  Trim seams to 1/8″
  4. Turn inside out and press (now right sides are together).
  5. To enclose seams, sew another seam with 1/4 seam allowance.
  6. Fold down top 1/4″; turn down a second time 1/4″; press and sew.
  7. Turn right-side out and press
  8. For the ties, fold edges into center and press; fold in half and press again (tie is now about 1/4″ wide); sew down the middle
  9. Fold top of bag down 1 1/2″ twice (like a lunch bag); position ties and stitch in place.
  10. Press bag, and you are ready to pack your lunch!

Cut Fabric

Stitch Sides – Wrong Sides Together

Clip Seams, Turn Inside Out

Sew Side Seams, Fold Down Top Hem and Stitch

Fold Ties and Press

Assorted Finished Ties

Turn Right-side Out, Fold Down Top, Pin Ties and Stitch Into Place

Here are some variations  – Make your bag bigger or smaller; add a pocket for your water bottle; use velcro to close instead of ties; decorate your bag with ribbon, ric-rac, or a fun applique; use two different fabrics for front and back.

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