Monday, July 29, 2013

Zippered pouch tutorial!

As promised, I worked up a little tutorial, filling y'all in on how I make my little zippered pouches (I knew you were just dying to know!)  Check out the full tutorial after the jump!  As always, I would love to see any projects you come up with, so I hope to hear from you soon!

Hello, and welcome to the zippered pouch tutorial!  You'll love this project, I promise.  Ready?  Let's go!

To make this project, you will need: 

Two pieces of outer fabric, each 9" 7"*
Two pieces of lining fabric, each 9" by 7"*
9" Zipper*
Sewing machine

*Feel free to change around the sizes of this pouch, the possibilities are endless!  Just make sure that the length of your zipper is at least as wide as the top of your pouch.  Don't worry if it's longer (a little extra zipper never hurt anybody!)  But you will run into some problems if your zipper doesn't reach from end to end across the top of your pouch.

1:  Cut your fabric to the measurements specified in the above list of supplies.  You should have two pieces of main outer fabric, and two pieces of lining (a total of four pieces.)

2:  Lay one of your main outer pieces out, right side up.  Lay the zipper on top of this piece, face down, and align raw edges.

3:  Lay one piece of your lining, right side down and on top of the zipper, creating a zipper sandwich.  Make sure your top edges are lined up and your right sides are touching each other, and then pin through all three layers.

4:  Sew through all three layers.  A zipper foot is not absolutely necessary, but makes this step much easier.  You should also be aware of where the zipper head is (this is tough to get around!) so you may want to do half of the length with the zipper zipped shut, and half with it open.  I usually just pause every few seconds and make sure everything is still lined up properly, and that I can get around that pesky little zipper head.  One final tip: watch out for the thick metal teeth, located at either end of the zipper.  Running those over is a quick and easy way to break a needle!

5:  press your fabrics away from your zipper neatly.

6.  Repeat this process for the other half of the zipper, and using your other two pieces of fabric.  Make sure your fabrics are all facing the right direction.  Once you've completed this step, you should have something that looks like this (here are views from both sides): 

7.  Open the zipper halfway(I find this makes turning the pouch right-side out much easier, and also keeps the head out of your sewing path) and match up the two outer pieces (right sides together) and the two lining pieces (right sides together.)  Pin the pieces together, making sure to line up the zipper teeth.  I also like to make sure the zipper teeth are pointed up towards the outer fabric, just so things lay a little nicer when everything is put together.  Once everything is lined up and pinned, stitch around the edge of the entire pouch, leaving at least a 3" gap somewhere in your lining, so that you can turn everything right-side out.  I usually leave my gap on the bottom of the lining, because it's the easiest to close it up from there (although you can often see the seam when you open the bag all the way, I usually just use a matching thread and it blends in pretty well.)  We're almost there, folks!

8.  Once you've stitched all the way around (except for the gap you left in the lining, I hope!) you can clip your corners and turn everything right-side out again.  Poke out your corners and admire your work.  It should resemble a pouch at this point!  Go ahead and press it a bit with the iron, it really does make it look better.  

9.  All that's left is to close up your little turning gap!  To do this, I pull the lining out all the way, and press the gap closed neatly, so that it will sew shut without any creases.  Once I've done that, I switch my thread color to match the lining (if necessary) and just sew it shut!

10.  I really just wanted to make it an even ten steps.  This step is totally superfluous, and completely congratulatory: CONGRATULATIONS!  You've just made a fully-lined zippered pouch.  Go fill it with things and enjoy every second of it.  

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