You will need:
65cm of 114cm wide fabric but make sure it is a light-weight one as it needs to scrunch up to fit inside the pocket. Our Art Gallery Craft Cotton is ideal.
A piece of fabric about 25cm square for the contrast pocket.
Half a metre of ribbon
To Make up the Bag
Cut out 2 main bag pieces and 2 contrast pocket pieces, but make sure the pocket pieces are a PAIR.
Start with the Contrast Pocket and fold the fabric along the two short fold lines so the wrong sides are touching.
Now fold under the longest side of the Contrast Pocket.
Draw in the stitching line on the right side of the pocket. A quick and easy way of doing this is to fold over the pattern piece along the stitching line and use this as a guide as you place the pattern piece over the fabric.
Lay the contrast pocket over a corner of one of the bag pieces. Pin in place and sew along the stitching line on the pocket and through the bag.
Now place the other Contrast Pocket over the opposite corner on the other bag piece and do the same. They should make a pair.
Now to sew up the bag.
If I were using a French seam on a garment I would sew this slightly differently around the corners. However, as this is a bag and it needs to be a bit stronger on the corners this method will suffice.
Place the bag with the wrong sides together and pin around the main bag, leaving the handles free and unpinned.
Sew with a 6mm seam allowance along the three sides of the bag.
If the seams are a little bulky you can trim the seam allowance down to 4mm.
Trim the excess fabric across the corners.
Turn the bag out so the seams are on the inside. Roll the seams to the edge and press flat.
Pin to enclose the first seam and sew a second seam 8mm wide, enclosing the first one.
Turn the bag around the right way again. Roll the seam so it sits on the edge and press the seam flat as before.
Match up the handles of the bag with the wrong sides together. Sew a 6mm seam allowance.
Press the seam to one side. Fold the bag with the right sides together to enclose the first seam. Sew another seam 8mm wide. Press the seam to one side.
To neaten the handles of the bag sew a narrow hem as close as you can to the edge. If you have a rolled hem foot on your machine you can use this here. Otherwise, fold over just under a centimetre and then slide your nail under the fold to tuck in half of the hem allowance. Don’t pin first! This allows the fabric to find its own way to sit and a very narrow hem can be created.
Then press everything as flat as you can.
Thread the piece of ribbon through the casing and tie a knot.
You can use your bag whenever you need to and then fold it all up again into it’s own little pocket.