Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Reuseable Lunch bags!

No new craft today... But I have a great flash back for you! Perfect for back to school! 
I hope you enjoy this reuseable lunch bag tutorial!

2 coordinating Tea Towels
Iron on Vinyl
elastic hair band
Sewing machine

FYI- all my measurements are in inches. All of my seam allowances are 1/4 of an inch unless otherwise noted.

1.) Iron your tea towels flat and cut off the finished edge.

2.) Cute a 13 X 28 rectangle out of each towel. (the liner and the outside of the bag are made the same way)

3.) Choose which towel you want to be the liner and iron on the vinyl using the instructions on the package.
4.) Fold in half so that you have a 13 X 14 rectangle and on the folded edge cut out a rectangle in each corner that is 2.5 inches wide and 2 inches tall. (this is for when we square off the bottom) Repeat with the liner towel- which now has the vinyl ironed on to it.

5. With right sides together sew the unfinished edges together. (I allowed for 1/2 inch seam) Sew from the top of the bag to the top of the rectangle you cut out. There should be 2 sides of the rectangle that have unfinished edges.
6.) Now we are going to square off the corners on the bottom of the bag. You want to pull open the rectangle so that the seam that you just sewed is in the middle. Your unfinished edge will be perpendicular to your seam. (Perpendicular means at a right angle)
7. Sew the unfinished edge. I like to use a zig-zag stitch when I do the corners. I feel like i make it stronger that way. Repeat for the other corner of the bag and the 2 corners of the liner.

8. Now your bag is coming into shape. Fold the outside towel out so that the right side is showing. You should see the bag shape now.
9. I like to iron creases where the folds of the bag should be. It helps keep the bag shape and makes the side stand up better.
Here is what it should look like after you iron: You do not have to iron the sides of the liner. The vinyl will give it plenty of strength.

Now you should have 2 bags, the outside and the vinyl-coated liner

10. With Right sides together put the "outside" into the liner and pin together.

11.) When you sew the two sides together it is easier if can take off the part of the tray so that you can place the bag around the sewing machine. My Sewing machine looks like this when I take off the part so that I can get to the bobbin. Sew around the top of the bag leaving a 2 -3 inch opening so that you can flip the bag right-side out.

12.) Flip right side out and top stitch to finish the edge.

13.) Now we are going to make the handle. With the left over material from the towel cut out 2 rectangles the size that you want the handle to be. Mine is about 3 X 12. I used one piece from each towel.
14.) With right sides together sew around 3 sides of your handle leaving one of the short sides open so that you can flip right side out.

15.) Flip right side out and top stitch to finish the edge of the handle.
16.) Now we are going to sew the handle to the bag. I took off the the part of my tray again so I could fit the bag around. It helps to sew the handle on. Sew the handle to the side of the bag. I used the seam to mark the middle. Turn the bag and sew on the other side of the handle.

17.) now we are going to make the closer piece. I cut out a 4 X 8 rectangle and then I cut off the corners on the top to make it look like a tag shape. You can make it any shape that you want. You could leave it as a rectangle or curve the edge or make it pointed. Be creative! I cut one of each towel again.
18.) On the RIGHT side of one of your pieces pin the elastic hair band in the middle of the top. (or where ever you want it to go) I have found that if I put a knot in it first it is easier to pin, just make sure the knot is above the seam.
19.) With right sides together sew you closer piece leaving 2-3 inch gap to flip right side out.

20.) top stitch to finish the edge.

21.) Sew the closer piece to the back of your bag.
22.) Pull on the elastic band to see where your button should go and sew on your button. (-How do you like my pink PJ pants and the camera lense cap in the bottom of the pic... I could have cropped them out but that would take time. : ) )

Ta-Da! Your very cute reusable lunch bag!!

Here are pictures of the other bags I made:

These reusable snack bags would be perfect with this lunch bag!

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Erin said...

I love that these are made out of tea towels! That makes it so much easier and they tend to be heavier fabric. Awesome tutorial~!

Kara @ Mine for the Making said...

Great tutorial! These are adorable! Love the tea towels you picked :)


Cecily said...

This is cool and I hate to sound stupid, but where do you get the iron on vinyl? Is that something JoAnn's would have? I need to make a bunch of these and some reusable sandwich bags but have been stuck on that part...

Anneliese said...

Love these sacks and the tea towels! Wish I'd bought some when they were available at Target (guessing that's where you got them--I bought the tablecloths...) Thanks for sharing an oldie but goodie!

Holly Lefevre said...

So cute. What a great tutorial. I really need to make some of these - for snacks after school as we are running to and from everywhere, etc.

Elizabeth said...

That looks awesome. The fact that it is two tea towels makes it really easy for measurments too!

Does the vinyl make it insulted or just wipeable for spills? If not, what would you suggest to make it insulated?

Michelle {Daydream Believers} said...

Cute and thrifty - I love that! Thanks for sharing your great tutorial! :) {visiting from Tatertots and Jello}

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