Welcome to “Tween-y Bag” Tutorial Part 4: Making the Bag Strap and Drawstrings! Now that you’ve completed the Front Panel and the Lining of the bag, you’re ready to move on to making two different kinds of straps, also known as bias tapes. As always, please read the introductory post, “Getting Started,” to find out important information before proceeding.
What’s good about making a bias tape is once you learn how to make one, you can make it in any size imaginable. So, let’s make the Bag Strap first.
Making the Bag Strap
For the Bag Strap, cut a fabric that measure 5 inches by 50 inches. I used the dark green fabric again for this. Don’t worry if you don’t have a fabric long enough to add up to 50 inches. All you have to do is connect smaller pieces together to achieve the desired length.
This is how:
Align and sew two short edges of the same-size fabrics together. When done, flip the fabric with wrong side facing up and iron the seams to open them up. Turn the fabric over and iron the other side. Look, now you have a perfectly connected fabric! Repeat until you achieve 50 inches in length.
To make the Bag Strap (Bias Tape), first fold the fabric in half and iron, to create a visible crease. Next, bring each long end of the fabric to the center (you can use the iron crease to guide you) and iron.
Bring two sides together, meeting in the middle. Iron the Strap down. The more you iron, easier it’ll be when you sew both sides together.
Sew down both sides of the Strap. This makes the Strap a lot more durable than if you only had one side sewn together. YAY — you just created the Strap for the bag!
Making the Drawstrings
Now, you’re going to cut two pieces of fabric that measure 2 inches x 29 inches each, to make the Drawstrings.
Repeat the same process of creating Bag Straps to make a Drawstring. Repeat the entire process again for the second Drawstring.
The Drawstring Slots
Okay, I need to admit that I don’t know the proper name for these pieces, but these are the fabric “tunnels” that you cast the drawstrings through.
Cut two pieces of fabric that measure 3 inches by 10 inches each. First, fold a tiny piece from the edge (about ¼ in) and fold again, tucking in the first folded piece. Sew both sides. This is very similar to the way you make the pocket in Part 3 when you made the pocket in the Lining.
Next, fold the wrong sides together in half, and iron.
Sew the top part (the closed edge) of the Drawstring Slot together. You can keep the bottom unsewn. Repeat the same process for the second piece.
Now, pin the Drawstring Slots on to each top edge of the bag, with right sides facing each other.
Make sure to sew as close to the top edge as possible. It’s pretty much like basting where the purpose is to temporarily sew two fabrics together to keep them in place. This will make it easier when it’s time to sew the Front Panel and Lining together.
The bag should look like this now.
Making the Adjustable Strap
You are now ready to put the Bag Strap into the Slider and Rectangle Ring set to make it adjustable.
First, cut 9 inches from the Bag Strap you made. This will be used to hold the rectangle ring on one side of the bag.
Trying to explain how to loop the strap to the ring is a little difficult; therefore, I’m going to rely on some helpful online tutorial for it. I recommend this online tutorial “Adjustable Strap Tutorial” by homespunthreds. She keeps it simple and it’s really easy to follow. If you enter in the keyword, “Adjustable Strap tutorial,”on YouTube, you will find many, other helpful videos.
Pin each end of the Strap to both sides of the bag. Put right sides together on both edges. Just like what you did basted the Drawstring Slots, this step allows you to detect any potential pitfalls, such as twisting the strap or sewing it on the right direction, before you sew the Front Panel and Lining together.
Baste the Strap, sewing as close to the edge as possible.
Look, the bag is coming along beautifully together!
We’re on a home stretch now! You are now ready to put it all together in the fifth and final installment of the tutorial, “Tween-y Bag” Tutorial Part 5: Putting it all Together! See you there! 🙂
If you want to jump to other tutorial posts, here are the links:
Part 1: Getting Started
Part 2: Making the Front Panel
Part 3: Making the Lining
Part 5: Putting it all Together