What do you do with 2 left over blocks?
Make a bag full of kisses of course!
This bag will hold the Baby Kisses Quilt when I gift it. Yeah, some people buy gift bags.
You will need 2 blocks, of course, some batting, backing, and some left over strips to make it bigger.
The poka dot sashing will actually be the sides when I stitch the bottom corners of the bag to make it square-ish.
3 strips for handles and trim for the top of the bag.
Scraps for a pocket.
I also used some HeatnBond, and some of that sticky stuff for applique since I bought a bolt of it before I discovered I don’t like it.
To start, I sashed the blocks, then quilted them with some extra orange fabric.
I squared the blocks to 19″x19″ and made a large pocket 19″ wide and 15″ tall, but I recommend only 14″ tall after having sewn it.
For the pocket, I used 2 more 10″ pieces of the fabric line that I didn’t use in the quilt, and added sashing to bring it out to the width of the bag pieces.
There are many ways to make a pocket, and for this one, I used heavy interfacing [to help the bag stand up] and made both sides pretty. Then I quilted it, and finish trimed both top and bottom eges.
Turns out I made mine about 1/2 inch too tall. 5 inches shorter than your bag blocks is best.
* If your machine can’t sew through the pocket, bag, and trim, then you want to sew the top and bottom of the two pieces right sides together, [like a tube] turn them wrong side in, press at the seams, insert your interfacing into the tube, then quilt it. This will eliminate the added finish trim pieces, and lessen the bulk.
*You could also make the pocket less wide, finish all 4 edges, and stitch it on the sides and bottom to the inside of the bag. Then you won’t have to stitch through both sides of the bag pieces and the pocket as well.
After adding trim to the bottom of the pocket, I placed it 2″ above the bottom of the bag piece, on the inside sewed along the bottom of the pocket. The sides of the pocket get sewn along with the sides of the bag. Then I zig zag the edges. I could have trimmed the inside of the bag seams with binding after, but I didn’t. It’s just a simple bag, right?
After sewing the sides and bottom of the bag, I flattened out the corners, pinned and stitched across them to make the bottom square.
Handles – two 2.5″ strips cut 27″ long each.
I used a 1 inch strip of 2 sided sticky stuff [for applique] to stick down a 1″ strip of cotton quilt batting right down the middle. I hate that stuff, and am trying to use it up. I just don’t have the patience to peel the paper backing that often.
Then I ironed over one side, and before ironing the other side, I turned the edge under about a quarter inch. Then I stitched down the middle with a decorative stitch plus once down each side with a straight stitch.
Trim piece for the top of the bag is also a 2 1/2″ strip.
With the bag right sides out, wrap the top trim around the bag, and mark where it meets. Then do a diagonal [or straight] seam to make a ring. Make it a tight fit because it will stretch when you sew it.
Press a 1/4 down on one side, and use a strip of HeatnBond [3/8 size] sliced in half [make it skinnier] tucked under, then press to make it stay.
Center and pin the handles on leaving an inch sticking up. Then place your trim ring on and pin it. Sew around the trim ring at 1/2 inch. Then zig zag around it to make the handles more secure.
With the bag inside out, turn the ring to outside, pin or clip it, and sew it around the top and then around the bottom edge, and if you do it right, the bottom stitch line should catch the bottom of the handles.
There’s a few things I would change when I make another one, but I like that I can quilt the outside to the lining and have a nice invisable handle attatchment.
I hated the thought of sewing the handles to the bag, and having those stitches visable. and if I made the pocket smaller, I could french seam the sides of the bag, too. but this one’s done, and I’ve moved on!
So that’s my tip on sewing a simple quilted bag without having the handles messing up the look of the quilted blocks.