Wednesday 16 January 2013

Library Bag with Contrasting Fabrics Tutorial...

This is the 2nd post in the Library Bag Tutorial series. Today I'll show you how to alter the basic Library Bag, to add contrasting fabrics. 

  • 2 pieces 13" x 13" (33cm x 33cm) - main colour for the outside of the bag
  • 2 pieces 13" x 4" (33cm x 10cm) - contrast colour for the top outside of the bag
  • 2 pieces 13" x 16" (33cm x 41cm) - contrast colour for the lining
  • 4 pieces 10.5" x 1.5" (26cm x 4cm) - contrast colour for the handles
  • 2 pieces 10.5" x 1.5" (26cm x 4cm) - sew in medium weight interfacing for the handles
  • 1 piece roughly 3" x .5" (7cm x 1cm) - tape for the name tag


All seams are 3/8" (1cm), unless otherwise indicated. The seam allowance is not critical, as long as you are consistent throughout the project.

Outside of bag - sew contrast fabric to main fabric:
  • With right sides together, sew the contrast to the main fabric.
  • Finish the seam with a zig zag stitch.

  • Finger press the seam. I usually press the seam towards the contrasting fabric, but it doesn't really matter whether you press it towards the contrasting fabric or the main fabric. I usually make the decision based on the thread colour in my machine and the colour of the fabric. In this case, I've pressed the seam towards the main fabric.
  • Topstitch 1/8" (3mm) from the seam.

To finish, follow the tutorial for the basic Library bag.

This fabric, with it's quirky characters, is ideal for a library bag. I can just see a young person likening the small characters to those in books they've read, or even making up their own stories about the characters.

I just adore this fairy tale fabric and am now down to small scraps. A pillowcase, previously made with this fabric, is a firm favourite with one of the little people in the family. 

More variations and additions to the basic Library Bag tutorial will follow soon;
To finish off the series, there will be a round up post with links to different styles of library bags. If you make a library bag using this tutorial, I'd love you to add it to the Threading My Way ~ Sewn by YOU Flickr group. Feel free to add any projects made with Threading My Way tutorials.

I'll be adding this Library Bag tutorial, to the 300+ bags already linked to the Bags and Totes link party, here at Threading My Way.

... Pam


  1. Oh I love the fairy tale fabric! Thanks for sharing another aspect to the bags. Now I really have no excuse :)

  2. These bags are lovely, I really should make my 2 a bag each, it might stop the library books getting lost in the bookcase!


  3. Ooh I think I like it better with the contrasting fabric at the top. Very nice.

  4. So cute.... and I love the fabric!!

  5. You inspired me, 3 library bags made ready for school to start.

  6. This is adorable! I need to sew a library bag. We wore our old one out!


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