These little bins are fairly easy to sew and I would definitely recommend to any sewing novice. The fabric storage bins are very popular at the moment and I recently sewed one for a baby shower, which then resulted in sewing a few more to offer up in a giveaway. Knowing I wanted to write up a tutorial to share, I was a good girl and snapped the necessary pictures while working on the first one. And, then that’s were it sat for the past couple of weeks, while I worked up the energy to create the pattern pieces (my least favorite part). Today is one of those ‘get it done’ days, so pattern pieces have finally been created. Yay!
Here’s how to create your own fabric organizer bin. The fabric length recommendation below is generous and it is very possible to create a bin with less fabric, but this will allow for any mishaps that may occur.
1/2 Yard of Fabric (home decor weight recommended, but if you use a lighter weight cotton be sure to use interfacing)
1/2 Yard of Lining
Mid- Weight Interfacing – small amount for the handles and optional for the body of the bin.
Peltex One Sided Fusible – Very stiff interfacing. Pattern pieces not included. You’ll need one piece 9″ x 5.5″ and two pieces @ 15″ x 7″.
Pattern pieces – Available for download at the bottom of the post.
After the templates have been printed out and the pattern pieces created, you cut everything necessary for the fabric bin. I like to create my pattern pieces out of cardstock or posterboard, but for the trial run you may want to go with regular paper just in case you decide to make any adjustments.
Start with the handles. Iron the mid-weight interfacing to the back of your handle pieces. Fold each piece in half lengthwise, iron well. Then open and fold/iron each side to meet the middle crease line.
Now top stitch each side of the strap close to edge. Set the handles aside.
Move onto prepping the body and lining bottom. First, center and iron the one sided fusible Peltex to each fabric body piece (but not the bottom piece). The fusible interfacing comes with directions on how to apply to fabric. I usually position it on the back side of the fabric, hold in place, then flip right side up and finally iron in place. Now use the remaining Peltex piece for the lining bottom. Repeat the sames steps as you used for the body pieces. When completed you should have the stiff interfacing applied to the back of each piece of the boy fabric & one smaller piece applied to the backside of the bottom lining piece.
Once everything is prepped you can begin assembly. Both the lining and the exterior of the bin are assembled exactly the same, so only the assembly of the lining is shown. Match the bottom lining piece to the bottom of one body piece, right sides together. Stitch 5/8″ seam. Repeat for other body piece, but leave an opening in the center for turning.
Now topstitch along bottom, with seam allowance towards the bottom. Remember not to topstitch the opening. The topstitching is really optional. Your bag will still function properly without the topstitching. It just gives the bin a more finished look. **When stitching the exterior fabric for the body, you do not leave an opening. Both seams along the bottom are sewn completely from one side to the other.
Match up sides, right sides together and then stitch a 5/8″ seam on each side. Press your seam allowance to one side and then topstitch. Pic below shows the topstitching, after the sides were stitched together.
Match the seam on the sides to the center of the bottom piece. I usually eyeball this, but if you aren’t sure you can always mark the center of the bottom before assembly. This will make it easy to match up after pieces have been stitched together.. Stitch a 5/8″ seam.
Trim seam allowance down to about 1/4″. This helps eliminate some of the bulk and define the shape of the bin when everything is turned right side out.
This is a completed lining and body sitting side by side.
It’s time to attach the handles. Pin each so that the inside edge of the handle is 1 1/4″ from the side seam. Stitch in place. Sew approx. 1/4″ seam. I usually stitch in a zig zag pattern to reinforce the handles.
With the handles sewn to the exterior of the bin, its time to attach the lining to the body. Set the exterior of the bin inside the lining, right sides together. Match and pin at the side seams.
Starting at one side seam stitch all the way around the bin.
Once the stitching is complete, turn the bag right side out using the opening in the lining bottom. Double check all your work and be sure everything looks good before stitching the opening closed. The last step is to topstitch around the top of the fabric bin. It’s usually a good idea to iron all around the top so that all the fabric is smoothed out before sewing. The topstitching also helps keep the lining sitting nicely inside the bin.
You’re done. The finished bin should look very similar in shape to the one above. The handle pattern piece included is shorter than what you see on this bin, so you’re finished bin should have slightly shorter handles. The Peltex is incredibly stiff and keeps the bin standing all on it’s own. The are perfect for storing diapers, dvds, toys, books, doll clothes, dolls, toy cars…..
Click on the image below to print out the fabric bin organizer templates. The pages need to print out at 100% to ensure the proper size and you’ll also want the smallest margins possible. A finished bin should measure approx. 9″ L (side to side) x 6″ D x 7″ H.