New Bag Design for Small Item Organization

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This is a robust and durable zippered bag designed for small item organization like first aid kits, and travel. The shell material is 1000 D Cordura, and the inner lining is Tempo hook and loop fabric. This fabric adheres to Velcro, making the interior of the bag 100% customizable based on the users needs.

In this post I’ll run over the basic pattern that was created, as well as materials, and construction ordering.

Pattern:

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The bag measures 9 inches wide by 12 inches tall, and is 2 inches deep. The corners of the pattern are rounded to limit seam intersections, which are prone to fail.

It’s important to note, that the circumference should be measured along the true seam line, and not at the edge of the seam allowance. Otherwise, the circumference will be too long. Sew up a draft.

The zipper sides should be cut narrower than the actual width of the bag in consideration for the extra width of the zipper teeth (1/4 – 1/2 inch). This bag has a “clam-shell” design, with the zipper extending across three out of four sides. This allows the bag to be opened up very wide. Connecting the two ends of the zipper is a small piece of fabric, measured to fill in the remaining length not already accounted for by the zipper.

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Materials:

3′ of YKK #8 zipper with 2 pulls

3′ of 1 inch nylon webbing

15′ grosgrain or bias tape

1/2 yard 1000 D Cordura

1/2 yard Tempo hook and loop display fabric

Construction:

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Sewing zipper to outer Cordura and inner Tempo

The zipper is sewn first, with the Cordura outer, and Tempo inners sewn on at the same time.

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Zipper topstitching

The zipper is topstitched to keep everything flat and neat.

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Basting the zipper pull tabs

Zipper pull tabs are basted onto the ends. These are a folded 2 1/2 inch piece of 1 inch wide webbing. They act as zip stops as well as pull tabs. If anyone is debating wether or not the get an industrial machine, being able to sew straight through nearly all plastic zippers is pretty satisfying.

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Odd twisting to sew the final loop

Once the zipper is completed, it is sewn into a loop using the final pieces of fabric. To get the last seam done requires an odd twisting of the piece to get all the right sides together.

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Finished zipper loop

Once the zipper is finished, some webbing is added onto one side to create a handle, and give some contrast / character to the outside of the bag.

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The remaining pieces have the outer shell and the lining basted together in preparation for the final seams.

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Pinning the main body to zipper loop

In preparation for the final seams, I like to pin the four sides together along their respective mid-points, then ease the corners into place and pin.

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Final pinning

I don’t normally pin this much, but I was having trouble with fabric distortion and uneven easing through the corners.

When sewing these seams, which are a little cramped feeling, I like to hold the piece vertically, which eliminates some awkward folding and fabric shifting.

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This process is repeated for both sides of the bag, and then the seams are trimmed to prepare for seam taping.

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To finish the inside seams, I use a binding tape attachment to apply 1″ grosgrain ribbon.

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Grosgrain ribbon

The Tempo fabric will adhere to any hook velcro, so the inside can be re-modeled and customized indefinitely. Simply make an accessory that you would want on the inside, sew on some hook velcro, and it’s ready to go.

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This zippered pouch can be placed anywhere inside the bag, and it will stay put, nice and secure.

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This bag will be a gift, but I already have plans to make more. The inner accessories make for fun, easy projects that don’t require a lot of materials.

Find this interesting or helpful? Let me know in comments section below.

4 thoughts on “New Bag Design for Small Item Organization

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