Here is the tutorial for making this fabric box. I have pictures for most steps which I find makes things clearer.
Start by cutting out your fabric. I was making my box 11.5″ x 11.5″ x 9″ so here are my dimensions. Once I try making this different dimensions, I can see if my formula works and then I can update this with a formula rather than the measurements I used. Anyhow, here is what you will need assuming you are making a box of the same size:
- 2 – 16″ x 24″ pieces of outside fabric
- 2 – 16″ x 24″ pieces of inside fabric
- 4 – 11.5″ x 9″ pieces of timtex
- 1 – 8″ x 6″ piece of outside fabric
- 1 – 11.5″ x 11.5″ piece for the base (ideally wood, but could be anything firm and hard)
Some notes on the fabric. I recommend something very stiff for the outside. Home dec fabric. It works better and looks nicer. I used some plain muslin for the inside and it was kinda a pain to work with. I would do something thicker next time.
Timtex: you can use peltex as well. I just happen to have timtex around the house.
Also, you’ll notice the small handle piece is doubled over in the picture. That’s because I sewed both my handles at the same time and then cut the strip in half. You can do the same if you want to save time.
One more note. This tutorial assumes a 1/2″ seam allowance unless otherwise stated.
You will also need a base as mentioned above. I had these really hard cardboard squares. Maybe wood? They came out of some hanging closet organizers that I had to cut to make shorter, but I saved the inserts and they came in handy. You could just use another piece of timtex if you wanted, but it won’t be a sturdy. A nice pice of wood is ideal. See the other pieces? I plan on making more boxes.
Let’s start with the handle.
The steps above, reading left to right and top to bottom.
- Fold the handle piece in half and iron to make a crease. Open back up.
- Fold the sides into the middle crease.
- Fold over on that middle crease again and press.
- Sew about 1/4″ from each side to make a strap of sorts.
Now fold over the edge about 3/8″ and sew again about 1/4″ from the edge. This will make placing the strap easier later.
No picture here because it’s pretty simple. But sew the outside fabric right sides together on three sides. If your fabric has a direction to the pattern, make sure you sew the sides and the bottom. Repeat for the lining.
Press open all your seams. You may want to clip your corners at this point to make it easier to press.
Smoosh the corner down of the outside fabric so that the seams line up and you have a point. Above is a picture of matching up the seams.
Draw a line where the triangle is 11.5″ wide.
Sew straight down that line.
Now cut away the excess leaving about 1/2″ seam allowance.
Be sure to clip the fold on the edges to make pressing the seams open easier.
Press open the seams. And here you have the two “boxes” done.
Find the center of your handle.
And center your handle on the side of the box you want for the front. I kinda eye balled it using pins to mark the edges and middle of the side and the lining everything up. It seemed to work well enough 🙂
Pin the handle to the bag.
Now stitch along the stitch line you made before.
Place the bottom in the outside bag with right side out. Then stick the timtex pieces upright on the sides. You’ll want to pin the outside to the timtex. It actually works better if you pin from the outside, not the inside as pictured here.
Now set the lining in. This is the part that is a little tricky if you used a flimsy fabric as I did. You’ll want to line up the corners and get it all nice and square.
Now fold over the lining between the timtex and the outside fabric and pin. Note: mine looks like I’m tucking a lot because I am. I cut my lining a bit too big. But just ignore that.
Turn over about 1/4″ of the outside lining and pin. This will give you a nice little border. It’s more important to keep the top border even than it is to turn over exactly 1/4″.
All pinned and ready to sew.
Finally, stitch about 1/8″ from the fold of the outside fabric. Stitch through all layers (including timetex) and all the way around the top.
And we’re done! Here’s the inside. There’s a picture of the finished box at the top of this post.