Tidy Bag

You will need:-

1 half metre plain or printed cotton, a sewing machine, matching thread, dressmaking pins, sharp fabric shears

1. From your fabric, cut out four rectangles - 2x (28cm x 40cm)for the main bag and 2x(4cm x 100cm) for the drawstrings.  

2. At the top (narrow edge) of each piece, fold over top edge 5mm and press with a hot steam iron to give a nice sharp crease.

Turn the pressed edge over a further 2 cm and press again. You should now have a double fold at the top edge of your fabric piece. Do this to both pieces.

3. Unfold the top to reveal crease lines. Then fold in 1.5cm at the side and press the top 3cm only. Do this to each side. Re-fold the top over  the folded-in side and press.  These creases will help you at a later stage when you come to sewing down the chanel and chanel edges. It should look like the image below. Do this to both sides of each piece.

4. Flatten out the creases but do not press - so that they are still visible. Place both bag pieces together with right sides facing outwards, and, beginning 4.5cm down from the top, stitch around the outside edge, 3mm away from the edge. Make sure you stitch as accurately as possible - taking care not to stitch any less than 3mm away otherwise you may not catch-in the fabric properly. Finish and secure 4.5cm away from the top edge.

5. Turn the bag inside-out thoroughly, making sure that the corners are turned through completely and press. The wrong side should now be facing outwards.   Beginning 4.5cm down from the top, stitch around the outside edge, 1cm away from the edge. Make sure you stitch as accurately as possible - taking care not to stitch any less than 1cm away from the edge so as to catch in and conceal the previous seam. Finish and secure 4.5cm away from the top edge. Turn inside out throughly and press.

6. Open up the unsewn edges at the top of the bag at each side seam and flatten down the 1.5 turned-in edge. This should  be easy to do because of the crease pressed in earlier. Edge stitch along the folded edge as near to the edge as possible. Take extra care at the corner. The nearer the edge you stitch at this point, the easier is will be. 
Quick Tip: Sew right up to the corner, stopping exactly on the side seam, in between the two pieces of fabric. At this stage, make sure your needle is down a through the fabric. Now lift up the presser foot and swivel the fabric around the needle, into position so that your are now set to come back up along the other side, and continue to edge stitch to the top edge of the other side. (See image below) Do this to both sides.

7. Fold in at the top of the bag - 5mm, then 2cm, where creased. This will give you a double-turned top edge. Edgestitch down along inner folded edge to make a channel. (See image below) Do this to both sides.

You will now have a neatly finished bag with a channel on each side of at the top.

8. Now for the ties. Take each 100cm x 4cm piece, fold in half lengthwise, and press. Open up and flatten with the wrong side of the fabric facing up so that the crease is still visible. Fold each side lengthwise into the centre and press. (See diagram below) 

9. Fold in half again, lengthwise, and press flat (see diagram below).

10. Edgestitch down the open, folded-under edges together. You now have a narrow strap 1cm wide (See diagram below). Do this to both pieces to give 2 straps.

11. Beginning with one of the straps, thread (using a large, strong safety pin) it through one of the channels and back through the channel at the other side (See diagram below).

Tie the strap edges together with a double knot, leaving as little extra strap as possible (See diagram below). It is not too necessary to finish off the edges of the strap as they will not be very noticeable when knotted and there is very little fabric left to fray 

12. Repeat this process with the other strap, this time from the other side to give a knotted edge at each side of the channel.

...And there you have it - your fabulous drawstring storage/organiser bag.

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