Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Puzzle Bags--mini tutorial

The Bug loves puzzles. 
We've gotten a couple of these jigsaw puzzles lately because she has grown out of her simple wooden ones.  But the cardboard boxes just aren't made to withstand an almost three year old. At least not MY almost three year old.

So I made some bags!
Forgive me, I didn't take step by step photos.
But I think the process is easy enough that you shouldn't need pictures.

What you will need:

  • Thin plastic, like from one of those zipper bags sheets and comforters come in

  • fabric

  • a button

  • an elastic hair tie

  • and the obvious--sewing machine and thread

  1. Cut your fabric.  My puzzle boxes were approximately 7" x 7" square, so that's what my measurements are based off of.  You will need two rectangles for your bag. Mine measured 8" x 14" which is the width of the puzzle box plus an inch for seam allowances by the width doubled.  Depending on how much fold over you want in the end, you could decrease the second number. 

  2. Cut an 8" x 8" square from your plastic.  Mine was really wrinkly because someone didn't fold it nicely before storing it away. Not sure WHO would have done that? Certainly couldn't have been me. Anyway, you can flatten it out a bit by pressing it with a cool iron just make sure to put some fabric between your iron and the plastic so you don't ruin the plate of your iron.

  3. Fold over the top edge of your plastic square and stitch it down to finish it.  I used an overlock stitch because I just realized my machine has that feature and I am enamoured with it right now but you could use a simple straight stitch if you prefer.

  4. Now sandwich your fabric rectangles with right sides together and the plastic square all the way at the bottom of one end.  You will be sewing the three "raw" edges of the plastic into your seams so make sure that finished edge the one you leave free.

  5. Sew around three sides.  I found it easier to sew the bottom of the bag first because I don't like to use pins if I don't have to and that held the slippery plastic in place well enough that I could stitch up the long sides sans straight pins. Oh bliss, oh inpatient seamstress bliss!

  6. Now turn your bag right side out and poke out the corners with a pen or something pointy.

  7. Iron down a quarter inch on the top raw edge, then iron down another half inch or so. I just eyeballed it. No need to be precise here, you just want it to look nice and finished.  Now stitch the folded edge down.

  8. Make a loop with your elastic hair band on the inside top middle of the side of the bag opposite the plastic pouch.  Clear as mud? Check out the photos and it will make more sense.  Sew that puppy down like mad.  I forward and back stitched over it several times.

  9. Sew your button onto the middle top of the plastic pouch.

  10. Cut the top off of your puzzle box and slip it into your clear pocket then fold the top of your bag over and slide the button through the loop!

Tada! You now have a bag to hold those puzzle pieces in ten easy steps!


I'm linking this up to:

1 comment:

  1. These have me curious, I think I need to see them in person.