Monday, 23 April 2012

Monday Makery - DrawString Bags

There is an abundance of drawstring bags all over our house. We use them to keep puzzles, ballet clothes, the odd socks that lose their matching partner in the washing machine and more to keep all the children's smaller toys in.
An old  pillowcase that you may find in a charity shop or one that you ordinarily may take there yourself are easy to turn into large laundry bags or pyjama cases. Smaller drawstring bags are great for party bags; personalised with fabric initials for the guests.
Call them 'magic bags' for some great games for younger children; fill them up with some big objects and some small objects, on a piece of card write the word 'big' and another with 'small' then the children take it in turns to pull an object from the bag and place it either next to the 'big' card or the 'small' card. Fill the bags with different textured objects and let each child take it in turns to try to feel and guess what the object is.

There are so many uses for them that you can see why I'm charmed by their versatility. The best thing about them is that they are very easy to make too. So, you can chose your own fabric, your own size and run a batch up in no time.

I'm no whizz at sewing but I can manage a straight- ish line and making them makes me feel like a pro because despite any actual skill, they look beautiful.

Here's what you'll need:

  • fabric - here we used cotton floral fabric measuring 24" x 12"
  • ribbon / shoe laces - we used 2 pieces measuring 34" each
  • scissors
  • needle and thread
  • tape measure
  • pencil/chopstick - for feeding through your ribbon

Here's how:

  1. Cut your fabric to the size you need.
  2. Face the fabric down on the table pattern side down (facing away from you) fold over about 1" from the edge along each of the longer sides to create seams. You can pin this down or for a quicker and easier fix I iron the edge to keep it from moving as I feed it through the sewing machine.
  3. Sew along the folded seam top to bottom.
  4. Now for the top and bottom. Fold over 1/4 " then fold over again 1" to create the seam for the top and bottom of the bag. Again you can pin this or iron it to hold your fold in place.
  5. Sew along your folded edges, this is where your drawstring will feed through.
  6. Now you can turn your rectangle into the bag. Fold your fabric in half pattern side facing (so the back of the fabric is facing you). Sew down each side starting from just below your top seam.
  7. Turn the bag the right side out and cut your length of ribbons.
  8. Using a pencil or a chopstick feed the ribbon through, clockwise through one sleeve and back round through the other. Tie the ends together in a knot. Then take another length of ribbon and feed through the same as before this time starting on the opposite side. Tie a knot in the ends and hey presto! Your bag is made.

If you'd like to add a pocket to the front or sew on initials for party bags or perhaps just to give each bag a name depending on its use, do it at the beginning before sewing the sides together i.e after step 5 once your edges are complete.

Whilst this might not have all the magic and creativity of some of our other Makeries I do hope its one you can return to again and again as you create drawstring bags for the home and of course your children. Like a  favourite recipe that is loved and enjoyed by all because of its ease and simplicity.

Happy Making

This is part of our weekly Monday Makery where we bring you a recipe to bake or a craft to create. Visit our Monday Makery when you're in need of inspiration for something to do on a rainy day or to use as interception of the words 'I'm bored', or just because being creative with your children is something you all love to do.
Our other popular blogposts include 'The story behind our collections', 'Tell us its Tuesday' , An A-Z of Sisters Guild, The Art of Living posts bring you all the things we are passionate about and the things we discover in our lives as mamas, and our 'Once upon a week' gives you a glimpse into life behind the scenes at Sisters Guild.

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