How to sew a large, vinyl lined Cosmetic Bag with boxed corners

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Do you need a new cosmetic bag? A bigger one? How about one with nice boxed corners that will stand up? Then I've got the perfect tutorial for you? My hubby and I are going on a cruise at the end of the month and I want to take ONE big cosmetic bag, not FOUR small ones like I did last time. I bought this pretty owl fabric at Joanns with a 40% off coupon and thought it would be perfect for my bag. Here's all you need to make your own:
  1. 2- 14 W x 10 H pieces of fabric for exterior. I'm using cotton.
  2. 2 -14  W x 10 H pieces of inner fabric. I'm using cotton.
  3. 2- 14 W x 10 H pieces of Iron On Vinyl
  4. 2- 14 W x 10 H pieces of heavyweight fusible interfacing
  5. 1- 12 inch zipper

First cut your exterior pieces. You could simply make a paper patter since all your pieces are cut the exact same size. I'm using my rotary cutter and mat. For those who might be new to this,
I'll show how to use it to cut fabric. It can be a little confusing at first. But after a couple of cuts you'll wonder how you survived without one.

I folded my fabric and ironed it. I took an inch off the raw edge sides to even it up. I moved my ruler over 10 inches and cut again. That cut will be the bottom of the bag. That's why the owls are sideways.

Next I turned the fabric to cut my width. After cleaning up the right edge, I moved over 14 inches and cut again. Now I have 2 pieces of fabric 10 x 14.

Now cut your interior pieces, vinyl and interfacing the same way.
Lay a piece of interfacing, shiny side UP, then lay an exterior piece on top with right side up. Align them up and press them together according to instructions with your interfacing. Repeat with your other exterior piece.
Now lay an interior piece face up on your ironing board. Peel the vinyl away from the paper.

 Place the vinyl tacky side down, then cover with the paper you peeled off. Iron according to directions and do not iron the vinyl, just the paper on top.

Repeat with your other piece so they both are covered.
Now lay one interior piece down and lay your zipper face down along the top so the edges are even. I used a few pins so when I did the next step the zipper would stay put.
Now lay one of your interior pieces face down on that and pin.
Now sew down that side at 1/4 inch seam allowance. I sewed down twice.
Remove the pins and open up. Be sure your zipper got caught in the stitching all the way down. Iron up to the zipper, but not the zipper itself.

Now lay the other exterior piece down facing up.
Place the other side of the zipper face down along the top just like before and pin. Pin the interior face down on top of that.

Now sew those together with a 1/4 inch seam.
Press that side. The top looks like this.
The bottom looks like this.

Now you need to topstitch what will be the top of the bag. Separate the lining from one exterior piece, and pin it to the other side out of the way. Stitch just a little away from the zipper all the way down.

Then flip it around, pin the interior under that piece on the other side and topstitch near that zipper.
Now lay the piece down so your 2 exteriors are on one side and your two interiors are on the other.
Pin all around the bag, lining up corners, sides and side seams. Leave an opening in the bottom of the lining 6-7 inches long. I always use colored pins on those areas to mark my start and stop sewing points.

Now sew with a 1/2 inch seam allowance, all around the bag, using your 2 pins for starting and stopping.

Now clip all 4 corners to within 1/4 inch of the seam.
Now time to box the corners so the bag will stand up on it's own once there's some items inside of it. Put your hand inside the hole you left. Go to a corner. Where the seam on the long side meets that short seam, stick your index finger there and push out so it forms a triangle. hold that triangle with your other hand while you take your hand out. Make sure the triangle is smooth on both sides, no creases. Then lay on your machine with the point at the end of the plate, about two inches. Sew down from the top to bottom of that triangle.

Now clip to within 1/4 inch of that seam.

Now do the same with the other three corners.

Now reach inside the hole and pull your bag out. Take your finger, or maybe the flat end of a chopstick or dowel and gently go around the bag and push your seams out. Push your corners out. Once that is done, fold the hole to match up with the seam already sewn. Do not iron! Just pin and start 1/2 inch before the hole, and sew 1/2 inch beyond the hole sewing just inside the folded edge. Check the other side to be sure both layers are sewn shut.

Push your interior down inside the bag and press down and push out the corners and get it situated.
You're done! Yaaay!

Just imagine all the different fabrics you could make this in ;0
Update! I've sewn up some more of these in different fabrics and thought I'd share them with you.


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