Small bags of usefullness

Ooo-yeah! My first sewing-project blog in a crazy-long time! I’ve made SO many things in the last 4-6 months which deserve to be photographed and briefly blogged about here… but I just never get around to photographing anything that I make – especially if it’s an item of clothing (meaning I need someone else to take the photos). So, to get the ball rolling again, I have taken a couple of photos of a few bag-type things that I made a while back.

In March when I was heading off to Cambodia I decided that I wanted to make a couple of cute little bags to carry my toiletries and medicines in. The bags I made were based on these cute ‘zippered cases’ over on one of my favourite websites – Design*Sponge.


I made 2 bags of different sizes, because the medicine one didn’t need to be as big as the toiletries one. BUT, both bags needed to be as small as possible… since I’m one of those people who the bigger the bag they carry, the more stuff they somehow end up carrying! Here’s what they ended up looking like!


Both bags were made out of stash fabrics and zips. Both bags functioned just as they were intended – and both were full to the brim, just as expected! No problems here!

In the picture above, you probably also saw the Kindle cover I made for the same trip. This was a quick make – and was not based on any existing pattern/tutorial. The cover was made out stash quilting cotton (one of my favourites!). It was fully lined, had a layer of thing cotton wadding between the lining and outer fabrics, and had a button tab closure. This made for a good, protective Kindle cover – INFINITELY cuter (and much, much cheaper, than any of the ugly, predictable pleather (etc) ones available for purchase)!

Back in April when I was starting my new job, I knew that I wanted to start a new habit alongside the new job – that is, taking my lunch to work (4 days a week) rather than buying it everyday (which is what I was doing previously).

So in preparation for my impending Sunday lunch cook ups, I purchased a bunch of plastic containers…

Image… but then, I was going to need a bag to carry one of these lunch boxes, an apple and a can of Diet Coke in on the train to work.

I had previously come across a free Easy Lunch Tote pattern download over on the Cotton & Cloud website. See? Cute shape, and super easy to make!


First I adapted the pattern to the size/shape that I wanted (deeper and more narrow than the original to fit the square lunch box). Then I picked some fabric from my stash. For an item I knew I was going to be using every day, I decided to cut into one of my favourite pieces of Amy Butler quilting cotton that I’d been saving for, well… something! The second fabric I used for the outside was a plain cotton that was in my stash. I probably wouldn’t have chosen this colour if I’d been choosing fabric instore, but as it turned out, I love the colour combination!


The bag is fully lined, and has heavy, fusible interfacing helping it to hold its shape. It has short straps, designed to be carried around my elbow. Over the opening of the bag is a long, tab closure, and on the front of the bag I attached one of my favourite vintage buttons, adding a bit of extra interest!

This bag has been carried to work 4 times a week for the past 3+ months – it’s a winner! (I only accidently left it on a seat at the Perth train station once – – – but at least it was there went I went back for it! ;))

6 thoughts on “Small bags of usefullness

  1. rubyslypprz says:

    Sarah, your bags are both cute and functional—a winning combo! and I love the way that you’ve utilized your sewing skills to improve other areas of your life (aka saving money & improving health with homemade lunches). Nicely done!

  2. Irene says:

    wow! nobody stole the bag you left on the station! What did you have for lunch that day? (jajajja). Beautiful bags!

  3. ozviking says:

    Sarah these are beautiful bags and so useful. May try to make one myself! Fancy nearly losing your lunch bag, that would have been a disaster after all that beautiful work with those gorgeous fabrics.

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