Beginner Sewing Tutorial: Simple Drawstring Bag

Are you looking for a fun & easy craft to make this weekend?  This simple bag takes minutes on a sewing machine and it is simple enough for a child to make. Set aside about a half an hour for this project for a new sewer. This was the first time my daughter used my sewing machine (and an iron!) and there was a lot of explaining to do along the way. You will want to stand right behind your child as they sew to help guide fabric, tell them when to press the pedal (and stop) and to press the back-stitch lever. Both of my girls made these simple drawstring bags for their recorders. Here’s how to do it!

You will need: A sewing machine, fabric, iron, a safety-pin, scissors

Before you begin determine the size of your bag and cut the fabric allowing 2″ larger.

Step 1: Iron the fabric. Always iron, do not skip this step! Parents, supervise!

Step 2: Fold down 1/4″ of fabric from the top and press. This is on the drawstring end, this will keep the fabric from fraying.

Step 3: Fold down 1″ of fabric (this is for the drawstring to go in) and press.  Sew along the edge of the folded fabric.

Step 4: Fold the fabric right-sides together (and press) keeping the drawstring seam together and starting from the bottom sew the end and side seam stopping after you go just past the drawstring seam (see next photo.) Make sure you back-stitch the beginning and end of this seam to lock the threads!

For the drawstring fold the fabric right sided together and press, sew along 2 sides and turn right side out (use a pencil to help you push the fabric right side out), press and turn the raw end inside and stitch along that end.

Step 5: Use a safety-pin attached to the end of the drawstring to feed the drawstring through the drawstring seam.

Step 6: Turn the bag right side out and you are done!

My girls now have cute new bags to keep their recorders clean and identifiable and best of all they made it themselves! Thanks for stopping by and til next time happy crafting!



5 Responses

  1. Great idea for teaching sewing, something that will always come in handy to know throughout life.
    On another note, I saw your box in the magazine and loved it! I sent a note on email to the publisher saying that I would like a new editorial calendar and that it might be fun to have this to do again. I’m waiting for a reply.


  2. You’re a good Mom, Lindsay- good role model, too!


  3. Lindsey, I just love your blog. But with recently losing my job, well back in May, I am really trying to be frugal and using what I have or repurposing items. I am making my own clay. and I do not have 1’x1″ or 2″x2″ or 3″x3″ molds. What could I use that I possibly have around the house to do this. I am not good at just forming them with my hands. ANy suggestions would truley be apprciated. I also want to tell you, I just love all your jewelry and am trying my hand at that also with beads I have been sent and one I already have on hand. I don’t want to give up crafting just because I don’t have the money to spend anymore. That is why I just love your blog. THank you so much.


    • Hi Donna, sorry to hear about your job:( Yes you can make your own molds an repourpose thisngs for molds. I don’t know what shapes you are looking for but for citcles and squares look in your recycle bin. I have used milk cartons and yougurt/fruit cups for soap molds. I have use candy and ice cube molds for plaster and clay. Items that come in “blister packs” such as tools or toys often would make nice molds for pendants. I have a plastic package that a pair of soccer shin guards came in because it lookes just like a $20 soap mold! When you are out shopping for groceries take a look at the packaging of items and choose a brand where you can use the package as well as the contents. Ask friends to save containers for you. If you are looking to make uniform clay slabs just get a few paint stirrer sticks (they are free at Lowes) and stack them 1 or 2 high on your table, leave a few inches of space between them for the clay, then roll over the clay with a rolling pin, it will keep the thickness the same then you can cut out the shapes with a cookie cutter or knife. I hope that helps. Take care, lindsay


  4. clever idea Lindsay…and the girls can be proud of their accomplishment!


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