A little while back I made a cover for my sewing machine (click here to see that post) and it has been brilliant for keeping my machine super clean! But because I don’t have a craft room, I have to move it around. A lot. It would be helpful to do this without having to take the cover off all the time, and I also do that thing where I sit down ready to sew and then realise that I have left the pedal somewhere else! This just means a lot of wandering around finding things. So I decided to make a sewing machine bag to solve the problem – I can keep my pedal in the bag, and then carry it around wherever I need to!
I chose the same fabric to match my machine cover, but I needed it to be a bit stronger to be able to take the weight of the machine. I used some white cotton drill, which you can pick up fairly cheaply in many places. The amount of fabric needed really depends on your machine, but a metre should be plenty.
You will need:
1 metre of white cotton drill
1 metre each of two different colourful fabrics (you may have enough with 1 metre, but I made bias binding from the solid colour, which always uses more than you think!)
A rotary cutter and cutting mat
A bias binding maker (I used a 2.5cm / 1″ maker)
Lay out your cotton drill and place your machine in the middle, so that you can bring the fabric up around the sides of your machine. Work out how deep and how wide the bag needs to be and then cut a rectangular shape to size – for my Janome 525S this worked out at two 75 x 54cm pieces. Then I cut out a 10 x 10cm square from each of the bottom corners. These pieces will form the lining of the bag.
To make the outer bag pieces, I laid some of the solid colour over the bottom of the lining, so that it covered where I had cut out the squares and about another 12cm or so (to allow for seam allowance) up what will be the side of the bag.
Once you have cut this piece, lay out the lining and the solid colour to be able to work out how big to cut your patterned fabric (allowing a centimetre or two for seam allowance, and then pin them together. You can see the selvedge here on my fabric, so I stitched just outside of it so that it wouldn’t show when pressed open.
Press open the seam allowance and iron the outer and lining pieces. Place them together and pin before quilting them to make them really secure.
I stitched between alternate kits shapes on this fabric, like I did with my sewing machine cover. This took quite a while with both pieces, but it’s really effective and will help the bag to be nice and strong. You’ll notice that I only quilted up to the solid fabric, and I think this looks really great, if I say so myself! 🙂
The next step is to make this into a bag! Place the pieces right sides together, and pin along the sides and bottom. Don’t do anything with the cut out squares yet, but stitch along the other edges with a 1.5cm seam. Trim the excess and press to one side. Then you need to fold each corner so that the short, unstitched sides meet like this:
Pin these short sides together, checking on the insides that the lines of the outer fabrics match up (I forgot to do this, despite thinking about it, so I do have a wonky corner!). I found it helpful to pin the seam allowance to one side too, so that when I stitched along the edge (again, with a 1.5cm allowance), it tucked in the right way.
Make your bias binding and then attach it to the top of the bag. I matched my binding to the solid colour of the bottom of the bag, and used matching thread too.
The last thing to do is to make the handles. You could use some webbing here if you like, but I wanted my handles to match the patterned fabric as I love it so much! I cut out two pieces of cotton drill that measured 75 x 3.5cm, and then cut out two pieces of patterned fabric that were big enough to wrap around the drill (I just did this by eye rather than measuring).
Fold the patterned fabric around the drill and press it so that it’s all nice and flat. Pin it together and stitch to secure. I folded so that my seams ran down the middle of the drill, and then I stitched either side of them. Fold over the short ends and stitch them too.
Position the handles and stitch them in place. I did this with a rectangle around the edges of the handles, and then a cross in the middle. The cross is key to this, as it makes them really strong. It looks like there is lots of stitching here, but those handles aren’t going anywhere!
Ta-dah! That’s it 🙂 Your new sewing machine bag is ready to use and take wherever you want to go. No more wondering where the pedal has got to – it’s in the bag!
This is such a spacious bag that even if you didn’t want to use it to put a sewing machine in, it would make a super beach bag!
Have you got any sewing projects planned this weekend? Happy sewing! 🙂