Monday, May 16, 2011

Tutorial: The Anywhere Bag

Summer time is upon us which means lots of traveling for my family. I have a laundry bag I made a couple years ago that always travels with us to hold our dirty clothes. I decided to alter the size to make it smaller and came up with:

The Anywhere Bag!

It's so versatile, you can use it for diapers/wipes, toys (which is what I use it for while we travel), crayons and coloring name it!

I am not sold on the name...what do you think? This is what I've been calling it to myself and it just kinda stuck...

You really can take it anywhere and use it for an added bonus, it's reversible!

To begin, gather your supplies:

Outer fabric cut: 22.5" x 13"
Lining fabric cut: 22.5 x 13"
Casing piece cut: 4" x 44"
Drawstring cut: 2-21" x 3" pieces
Safety pin, scissors, iron, straight pins, pinking shears (optional)


Fold the casing in half, right sides together, short ends together. Sew together using a 1/2" seam, to make a tube. Iron seams open.

Flip tube right side out, center the seam and press tube flat.

Fold in half lengthwise and press. The seam should now be hidden on the inside. Set aside.


Using a 1/2" seam allowance, sew together the drawstring strips along the short ends (right sides together) to make one long strip.

Iron the long strip in half lengthwise (wrong sides together). Open strip and fold long edges to the center crease and press. Now refold in half and press again.

Top stitch about 1/8" from outer edge. (Not shown in picture) Use your pinking shears to cut each end to help prevent fraying. Set aside.


Place the casing piece on top of the main panel (right side facing up) matching the raw edges. Make sure to center the casing so that there is about 1/2" of the main panel showing on each side.
Now place the lining panel directly on top, right side down. Line it up with the main panel. Sew a 1/2" seam across all 3 pieces.

Press everything nice and flat.

Now open the bag so both the main panel and lining panel are laying flat and facing up. Re-fold in half lengthwise, matching up the lining to lining, and main panel to main panel (right sides together). I don't have a picture of this step, sorry! If you skip down 2 pictures, this may help you visualize what I am talking about.

Pin the bag around all the sides. On the lining piece, measure about 4" at the bottom. Mark with your marking pen. This will be the hole left open for turning the bag right side out. Sew 1/4" around the entire bag, except the part for turning. Make sure you don't sew anymore than 1/4". This is very important!

Your bag should now look like this. Clip corners and flip right side out. Use a pencil or turning tool to push the corners out.

Bag flipped right side out. (I haven't poked out the corners yet)

Fold in the opened edges you left open for turning. Pin and either hand sew or edge stitch the opening shut. Push the lining down into the main panel.

Using your iron, press around the casing to help the lining lay nicely. Almost done!

This step is optional, but I ran a stitch around the top edge of the bag, for a more polished look.

Using your safety pin, run the drawstring through the casing, making sure not to pull all the way through.
Center the drawstring so there is an equal amount on each end.

Find the center of the casing (it should be at the fold) and sew a few stitches to tack the drawstring in place, so it doesn't come out.

Tie a knot at the end of each drawstring.

That's it!

Now stuff it full of goodies!

Main panel is by Ann Kelle, lining fabric is Riley Blake.

**Like I said earlier, this can be made in any size you want! It works great as a laundry bag, too!


  1. I've always wondered how to make a lined bag! This is perfect, thanks

  2. What's the name of the car fabric?...I love it!

  3. Hi Stephanie! It is from Ann Kelle's 'Ready, Set, Go!' Line. Check it out, she has tons of cute prints!

  4. I just made 3 of these and they look amazing. Thank you very much for your easy to follow tutorial. I will be linking back to you when I write my blog post over at after the new year!

  5. Great Stacy!! I am so glad it worked out for you. I can't wait to read your blog post! Happy New Year!

  6. I've made at least 7 of these since finding your tutorial- I made my first ones about 25% bigger to make sure they would fit what I wanted to fill them with!

    1. Wow, that's awesome!! So glad it was helpful to you. They're great, huh? I made a really big one to use as a laundry bag. I pack it in the suitcase when we go on trips!

  7. This is great! Thanks for the instructions, I hope to make more soon.


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