Little Bag Sewing Tutorial

by Robin on February 22, 2011 in Activities, Creativity, Fun, Industry, Sewing

Little Bag Tutorial: Complete

Several years ago my oldest daughter, Breezy, created a little bag that was so adorable that I wanted to make some of my own. This little bag tutorial is based off of her design. I have given directions for hand sewing and the stitches have a “rustic” look which adds to the beauty, but you can easily whip this up on the sewing machine for a more “polished” look.

You can also make this bag in different proportions depending on how you might use it. I keep my small embroidery projects in one. When we travel I like to fill one up with little things I will need to keep handy and carry it in my purse. It gives our travels a little taste of home.

This would make a great mother-daughter project. I hope you enjoy it!

Materials needed:
1/4 yard of Muslin
Embroidery Thread
1/4″ Ribbon – 18″ long
5/8″ Ribbon – 2 pieces cut 6″ long
Scraps of Print Material (for applique)
Scraps of Felt (for applique)

  • Cut one 16″ x 8″ piece of muslin- body of bag
  • Cut one 6″ x 6″ piece of muslin- for decorative front
  • Fold 16″ x 8″ piece of muslin in half and sew with 2 strands of embroidery floss 1/4″ from edge on both sides. See photo below.

Little Bag Tutorial: Basics

  • Keeping the bag wrong side out fold down 1″ from the top and sew with 2 strands of embroidery floss all the way around about 1/4″ from bottom edge.

Little Bag Tutorial: Top Seam

  • Turn bag right side out and then make a small cut on the inside only as shown in the photo above. This will be where you will insert the ribbon.
  • Decorate the front of the decorative piece using scraps of material, felt or any other items that you would like. This is where you can be as creative as you would like. I chose to do a bumble bee with the words “bee sweet”, a bird with the word “sing”, a cat that will soon have a mouse beside it, and a piece of felt with a stitch sampler on it and the words “my stitches”.

Little Bag Tutorial: Decoration

Stitch Sampler

  • As you decorate the front piece, you can use a basting stitch to hold down the applique piece while sewing it in place. A basting stitch is the same as a straight stitch except it has really long stitches and the thread is not knotted. The basting stitch can then be easily removed.

Little Bag Tutorial: Complete

  • Use 2 strands of embroidery floss and a simple straight stitch to sew the decorative front to the front of the bag making sure the slit for the ribbon is in the back.  Have one hand in the bag to keep it open and help guide the needle. This step gets a little tricky as you sew it near the bottom, but just take your time and it will work out just lovely.
  • Take a safety pin and attach it to the end of the 1/4″ ribbon and insert it into the cut slit at the top of the bag. Use the safety pin to push it all the way around and then back out of the slit.  Pull the ribbon so the ends coming out of the bag are even.
  • Use the end of the 1/4″ ribbon and tie a knot with it around the middle of the 5/8″ ribbon. And then tie a knot with the 5/8″ ribbon as well. This will give the ribbon a nice decorative end and keep it from sliding through the slit in the bag. You can sew a few stitches around the knots of the ribbons to keep them in place, but it may not be necessary.
  • Now fill it with little treasures.

Related posts:

Beginning Hand Sewing
Adventure Pouch
by Emily Rose, for the more rough and tumble needs. It also shows how to make a flat bottom.

May the times that you spend with your daughters sewing and working on a variety of projects be times of learning and growing together. You will both reap the benefits!


Married to Rob for 32 years and mother to Breezy and Emily Rose. A sinner saved by Grace, loves making her home a warm and inviting place to live and create in. Maker, gluten-free baker, and manager of several home businesses - Noble Rose Press, Clementine Pattern Co., and The Breezy Tulip Studio. You can find her at her brand new blog

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Debbie February 22, 2011

This is SO adorable! I haven’t sewn anything in YEARS and wasn’t sure what kind of project to start with – this looks like just the right kind of thing for me and something I could practice with and teach my girls, too! Thanks for sharing!

Dana Atticks February 22, 2011

Thank you! Love this!

Michelle R February 22, 2011

I am always looking for sewing projects that my young daughters would be able to help me with. This seems perfect!!! Thanks for sharing! 🙂

Carmen at Old House Kitchen February 22, 2011

I showed my girls and they LOVE this idea! We will definitely be make some of them soon! Thanks so much for sharing!

Ashley February 22, 2011

Those are adorable!!!

Jeannette February 22, 2011

This is so very cute! My 9 year loves to sew and this will be a great project for us! Thank you for posting such a cute tutorial 🙂

Kimberly February 22, 2011

What a cute idea! I have been looking for a simple sewing project to do with my girls that also uses hand stitching. Thanks! – by the way, I have really enjoyed reading your blog.

Brandi February 22, 2011


Dee February 22, 2011

Very nice. The cat and bird appliques are especially cute.

Miss Antoinette February 22, 2011

This is sooooo adorable Mrs. Brookshire! I cannot wait to give it a try they look so quick and simple!

Thanks for sharing!

Miss Antoinette

Carmen at Pebble Crossing February 22, 2011

So adorable, thanks for sharing.

Joy February 22, 2011

Those are the cutest little bags I’ve ever seen! My girls will love making this with me…thanks so much for sharing the idea! 🙂

Kristiana February 22, 2011

These are so sweet! Thanks for sharing!

Dandelion's Cottage February 22, 2011

HOW CUTE!!!! They would also be fantastic if you made then a lot larger and turned them into backpacks! How cute would that be! 🙂

Melanie February 23, 2011

Thank you for posting hand sewing projects. Not having a sewing machine at this time I look forward to making things by hand. Can’t wait to make thses bags. One for my son and one for my daughter. I’m hoping with more practice I get I can eventually hand sew a skirt or simple dress for my daughter or even myself!

Rachel February 23, 2011

These are absolutely adorable! I’m going to have to keep this information for when my daughter is a bit older. What a great way to teach the basics.

Heidi Woodruff February 23, 2011

So cute! I’d love to give your methods a try! Hugs, Heidi

BabyKay February 23, 2011

Headed to the store now… 😉

Rhonda Devine February 23, 2011

Love this idea, Robin~you all are so creative;)

Evelyn Givens February 24, 2011

Plesee contact me as I would like to order the bags from you. Thanks

Jen Kindle March 2, 2011

Oh… my girls and my one son have been asking to use the sewing machine. This might be a good pattern for them to start with. Thanks for posting this

Susan Krempa March 26, 2011

This is absolutely the cutest idea ever. I have long done embroidery stitches and applique work now creating handbags. Putting the three together in such a darling way is a wonderful idea. I have to try this. Tell your daughter to get ready for Project Runway! Thank you for sharing.

Riva March 28, 2011

Made 8 of these for supply and gold pouches for myself and a friend at an acting troupe out in the woods where we hit people with padded sticks.

Strength in the Song. ^.^

Suzanne May 3, 2011

I have had this saved in my inbox for a couple of months now as a reminder to do this with my 3 daughters this summer. It’s just too cute!

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