Practice tutorial: How to sew a zippered pouch

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Learn to Machine Sew practice tutorial: How to sew an easy zippered pouch for storing pencils, crochet hooks, makeup or whatever else! You can also change the dimensions and make an easy zippered pillow cover! www.cucicucicoo.com

A few days ago I published the latest lesson for the Learn to Machine Sew series on how to sew a simple exposed zipper. A lot of people are afraid of sewing zippers, but they’re actually really easy to insert once you know how to do it properly!

Nobody likes to waste a zipper, so today we’re going to use the practice piece from the zipper lesson and turn it into something useful: a simple zippered pencil pouch! But think outside the box— this type of pouch can be used for all sorts of things, such as crochet hooks or makeup, and it’s even more versatile if you change the size, say to fit knitting needles or for a throw pillow cover! You could even make boxed corners! There are infinite possibilities! So, let’s get started!

Learn to Machine Sew practice tutorial: How to sew an easy zippered pouch for storing pencils, crochet hooks, makeup or whatever else! You can also change the dimensions and make an easy zippered pillow cover! www.cucicucicoo.com

Here’s what you need to sew one pencil case style pouch:

  • two pieces of 4 x 9″ (11 x 23 cm) quilting cotton
  • one 8″ (20 cm) zipper (Thank you to Marine from Supercut for giving me this zipper in a bag full of other goodies from her amazing sewing supply store!)
  • coordinating thread
  • zipper foot

If you want to make a different size pouch (or pillow cover or whatever else), make sure that the top of your fabric pieces are 1″ (2.5 cm) wider than the zipper length. That accounts for 3/8″ (1 cm) seam allowance on both sides, plus a little extra breathing space beyond each zipper stop.

If you have a nylon zipper that is too long for your project, it’s super easy to shorten it! Here’s how.

Learn to Machine Sew practice tutorial: How to sew an easy zippered pouch for storing pencils, crochet hooks, makeup or whatever else! You can also change the dimensions and make an easy zippered pillow cover! www.cucicucicoo.com

1. Follow the instructions in my exposed zipper lesson to insert the zipper between the two pieces of fabric.

Learn to Machine Sew practice tutorial: How to sew an easy zippered pouch for storing pencils, crochet hooks, makeup or whatever else! You can also change the dimensions and make an easy zippered pillow cover! www.cucicucicoo.com

2. Fold the sewn piece in half at the zipper, matching up all of the fabric edges. Pin in place and then unzip the zipper halfway. (Don’t forget to do this! We’ll later be turning the pouch right side out through the zipper opening.)

Learn to Machine Sew practice tutorial: How to sew an easy zippered pouch for storing pencils, crochet hooks, makeup or whatever else! You can also change the dimensions and make an easy zippered pillow cover! www.cucicucicoo.com

TIP! It’s very important to make sure that the zipper is folded in half with the zipper tape folded flat as if it were part of the outside fabric, like you can see in the images above. This may seem like a no-brainer when sewing a simple pouch like this without any lining, but if you do add a lining, you have to be sure to fold the zipper tape along with the outside fabric, not the lining fabric.

Learn to Machine Sew practice tutorial: How to sew an easy zippered pouch for storing pencils, crochet hooks, makeup or whatever else! You can also change the dimensions and make an easy zippered pillow cover! www.cucicucicoo.com

3. Sew around the three fabric edges using the zipper foot and a 3/8″ (1 cm) seam allowance. I suggest sewing over the zipper tape more than once to strengthen the area.

Learn to Machine Sew practice tutorial: How to sew an easy zippered pouch for storing pencils, crochet hooks, makeup or whatever else! You can also change the dimensions and make an easy zippered pillow cover! www.cucicucicoo.com

4. Trim the seam allowances and clip the two bottom corners.

Learn to Machine Sew practice tutorial: How to sew an easy zippered pouch for storing pencils, crochet hooks, makeup or whatever else! You can also change the dimensions and make an easy zippered pillow cover! www.cucicucicoo.com

5. Sew a zig zag stitch along the fabric edges to avoid fraying if you ever wash the pouch. (The zig zag stitching on the zipper tape was done in step #1.)

Learn to Machine Sew practice tutorial: How to sew an easy zippered pouch for storing pencils, crochet hooks, makeup or whatever else! You can also change the dimensions and make an easy zippered pillow cover! www.cucicucicoo.com

6. Turn the pouch right side out and press it quickly… and you’re done!

Learn to Machine Sew practice tutorial: How to sew an easy zippered pouch for storing pencils, crochet hooks, makeup or whatever else! You can also change the dimensions and make an easy zippered pillow cover! www.cucicucicoo.com

Now comes the most fun part… filling it up with goodies! Wouldn’t an adorable little pouch filled with colored pencils, a cute pad of paper and stickers be a great gift for your favorite kid? Come to think of it, a lot of grown-ups would be happy for this type of gift, too!

This tutorial on how to sew a zippered pouch is part of the syllabus of Cucicucicoo’s beginner’s sewing course! Don’t forget to share pictures of your pouches (and what you put in them!) on the Cucicucicoo Creations Flickr Group or the Cucicucicoo Facebook page!Learn to Machine Sew with Cucicucicoo: a free sewing course for beginners

4 COMMENTS

  1. Grazie, anche se non commento quasi mai guardo sempre i tuoi tutorial e mi piace che fai sembrare tutto molto facile anche se in realtà non lo sia. Proprio questi giorni stavo provando a fare un astuccio da portare in palestra con il telefono, le chiavi….usando pezzi di jeans e ho lasciato tutto perché ero in difficoltà con la cerniera. Adesso credo di aver capito però dovrò ricominciare da capo. Brava!

    • Ciao Beatriz, sì, ora che sai come devi fare, riprovaci! L’unica cosa che ti consiglio è di provare prima con un altro tessuto più sottile, tipo un cotone normale. Jeans sono più spessi, quindi per chi non è abituato a cucirlo può avere difficoltà. E questo va bene, perché bisogna imparare, ma non mi pare il caso di imparare a cucire sia le cerniere che i jeans nello stesso momento! Lo spessore potrebbe rendere alcuni passi di questo tutorial un po’ più complicato. Poi, quando avrai capito bene come fare, provaci con jeans! Fammi sapere come procede! 🙂

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