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Grocery Bag Stuff Sack Tutorial

  I made a little stuff sack for keeping extra grocery bags handy to use as trash bags for the car or wherever. It has instructions for applique and a neat way to make a drawstring bag. I like that the lining shows and since the lining doesn’t have interfacing, it makes the casing portion a lot less bulky. You could easily adapt the technique to whatever size you need.


Materials Needed

- Main Fabric: 1/4 yard or fat quarter
- Lining Fabric: 1/3 yard or fat quarter
- Fusible Interfacing: 1/4 yard
- Applique fabric: 4” x 4” square lighter color + 2” x 3”
square of darker color
- 4” x 6” piece of lightweight sewable fusible web like
Heat n Bond Lite
- 1 yard of cord or drawstring
- 1 cord lock
Cut 2 of each
Main Fabric - 10” wide by 9” tall
Fusible Interfacing - 10” wide by 9” tall (I like Pellon SF-101)
Lining Fabric - 10” wide by 11” tall




Step 1: Apply fusible interfacing to wrong side of main fabric pieces

I trim my interfacing 1/4” to 3/8” smaller than the fabric before fusing to reduce bulk in the seam allowances.

Step 2: Prepare applique

a. Print trash can design at 100% scale.
b. Place fusible web over the design paper side up and trace
the trash can outline and oval separately - I used a pencil.
c. Fuse the trash can outline to the wrong side lighter color
fabric, about 2 seconds.
d. Fuse the oval to the wrong side of the darker color fabric.
e. Cut out the shapes.
f. Peel off paper.
g. Place trash can applique on one piece of the main fabric, centered 3.5” from bottom. Press.
h. Place oval on top as shown. Press again really well, with steam.





Step 3: Sew applique

a. Using a contrasting thread, sew all around the outline of the trash can applique and oval. 
Pull threads to the back to tie them off and clip them.
This is neater than backstitching.


b. Starting at top corner, sew diagonal lines in one direction, 1/8” apart, to fill in the middle.



c. Starting at the other corner, sew lines in the other direction, about 1/8” apart.
This does not have to be perfect, so have fun with it! Try to line up the stitches with the outline.
You can always go around the outside again too.  Pull all threads to the back and tie them off.



Step 4: Assemble bag (All seams 3/8” seam allowance)

a. Align top of one main fabric piece Right Sides Together (RST) with one lining piece and sew across the top, backstitching at the beginning and end.
b. Repeat with the other main fabric and lining pieces.


c. Press seams to the main fabric side.
d. Place pieces RST and sew around the outside edges, leaving gaps as shown, backstitching at the beginning and end of all gaps.
e. Press side and bottom seams open.




f. Flatten the corners and sew across with a 3/8” seam allowance, backstitching to secure.
g. Clip threads.
h. Turn right sides out through the hole in the lining.
i. Hand or machine stitch the hole in the lining closed.
j. Tuck lining in as far as it can go - it will stick out about an inch.
k. Even out the top of the lining that will form the casing and press it well.
See how nicely that casing turned out? And with no bulk at the top!


l. Stitch in the ditch along the seam at the top of the main fabric to make the casing for the drawstring. A specialty foot is helpful. I increase my stitch length here. Backstitch at the beginning and end and clip threads.


Step 5: Insert drawstring

a. Use a safety pin or bodkin to feed the drawstring through the casing.
b. Add the cord lock and tie the ends of the drawstring into a knot.
c. Clip the extra cord and use fray check on the ends, if you desire.


That’s it! Now stuff it with a bunch of grocery bags and you will always have extra trash bags for the car!


Drawstring Bag. DIY Free Tutorial Sewing


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