Make Your Own Book Bag

Children starting school or are already at school and in need of a waterproof book bag that will last until it is no longer needed? Perhaps it is time for you to make your own book bags for your children. Making your own book bag will not only save you money, but your children will have a one of a kind book bag that will stand out from all the rest in their classroom. If you have children at school then you will realize the importance of them needing a book bag to protect both their School and Library books from the general wear and tear of just placing a book straight into a Schoolbag without protection.

Does Your Book Bag Need to be Waterproof?

If you are going to your own Book Bags you might as line it with parka nylon to waterproof the bag from, water bottles and other lunch fluids. As, with all good containers and intentions, accidents happen and containers rupture… All on their own, in a child’s Schoolbag. To be able to save a book and wash and reuse your Book Bag makes it all worthwhile making your own Book Bag for your children… Plus, so cute! Limited only by your imagination.

What You Will Need to Make Your Own Book Bag

What Your Need to make Your Own Book Bag The Book Bag I make (to sell) has a finished size of 35cm x 44cm. To make one the same size you will need the following:
  • 1 x  Cotton Fabric (100cm x 37cm)
  • 1 x Parka Nylon Fabric (100cm x 37cm)
  • 2m Bias Binding (25mm) – See Tutorial on How to make Bias Binding Tape.
  • 10cm Velcro Hook & Loop
  • Matching Thread
  • Tailor Chalk
  • Saucer or CD (create rounded edge)

How to Put Your Book Bag Together

Cut out your fabric and nylon, and prepare your bias binding ready to attach. Make Your Own Book Bag Wrong Sides Together

Place fabric with Wrong Sides Together (WST), pin in place, and zig-zag, or overlock one end together.

Make Your Own Book Bag Fold

FOLD 42cm toward the alternate end of the book bag to envelop the nylon lining within the main fabric.

This will form the shape of the finished book bag.

Make Your Own Book Bag Flap

This will leave room for an overlapping flap, like an envelope, which you can then round the ends ready which will be finished off with bias binding.

Make Your Own Book Bag Marking Shape of Flap

MARK both corners with tailor chalk for your cutting guide.

Make Your Own Book Bag Pin

Pin and cut curved edges ready for stitching, prior to attaching bias binding.

Make Your Own Book Bag Attach Binding Opening

This is where you will attach your first piece of bias binding. If your fabric has a pattern, this will be the top of the pattern, as it is the front of the envelope.

Make Your Own Book Bag Attach Velcro

Mark halfway with a pin to center the velcro hook.

FOLD velcro hook in half and line it up on the FRONT of the book bag only, and PIN in place.

Make Your Own Book Bag Stitch Velcro

Pin the velcro hook tab in place before stitching around the edge to attach it to the front panel under the flap without getting the back of the book bag in the way of stitching.

Make Your own Book Bag Zig Zag Sides Together

Zig-zag the side seams together and stitch around the perimeter to tidy up edges, before attaching the bias binding.

Make your Own Book Bag Ready for Bias Binding

Now that you have stitched around the edges, trim any untidiness back to the zig-zag edge. FOLD flap, your book bag is now ready to attach the bias binding around the edge.

Make Your Own Book Bag Pin Binding

PIN bias binding to the edge as you go, starting with the BACK of the book bag facing you.

Make Your Own Book Bag Stitching Bias Binding

STITCH bias binding to the edge pinning and REMOVING pins as you go, for a tidier finish.

Make Your Own Book Bag Stitching Bias Binding Edge

CHECK underside of bias binding to ensure you are catching it as you sew around the EDGE of the book bag.

Make Your Own Book Bag Stitching Bias Binding Edges Continue to STITCH around the entire EDGE of the book bag, taking care around the curves, catching the underside as you go. Make Your Own Book Bag Bias Binding Attached

Now you have completed the entire EDGE turn it over and check that you have caught the underside of the bias binding. If NOT, you can rectify it now before continuing.

Make Your Own Book Bag Place Velcro

You are now ready to attach the velcro loop to the underside of the book bag flap. POSITION the book bag flap where you would like to sit. Fold back to expose the velcro hook, and line up your velcro loop on the book bag flap.

Make Your Own Book Bag Stitch Velcro Hook

STITCH  around the edge of the pinned velcro loop, to attach it to the inside of the book bag flap.

 Make Your Own Book Bag Finished - Inside

INSIDE view of a completed book bag, ready to close with velcro hook & loop.

Make your Own Book Bag Finished - Outside OUTSIDE view of Completed Book Bag, closed with Velcro Hook & Loop.

It Was Easier Than You Thought

Now that you have completed your first Book Bag, you may consider making them for family and friends for their little ones starting out at School. As you can see they are a lot nicer than any store-bought book Bag that I have seen before and way more versatile, durable, and waterproof to boot. If at all you are concerned about someone walking off with your work of art… Put a NAME on it! Either use the name tags that you already have for their clothes, as this is the easiest and sew it under the flap, above the Velcro Hook so it is only visible upon opening the Book Bag itself. I would love to see your creations so, please post them below so we can all see your masterpiece. But, if you are still struggling, then please what is it you are having an issue with? Ask away in the comments and I will be happy to assist you… OH! and What did I forget? ~Keep on Sewing
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