Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Pillowcase to Drawstring Bag - Tutorial

More of a mini-tutorial - this is a really quick project.

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The story behind it is that the other day, the cheap plastic ikea laundry hamper that I had in Lucy's room lost its leg. No idea how, the leg just fell off. So I needed something to keep all those dirty little clothes in while they wait for their turn in the wash. A drawstring bag was a perfect choice, because it can be hung on the hook on the back of Lucy's bedroom door.

You need
- a pillowcase (mine is a pretty vintage one I thrifted for 50c - score)
- 1 metre of ribbon, I used 1cm wide white grosgrain
- seam ripper and other basic sewing supplies

Take your pillowcase and turn it inside out. Use your seam ripper to split one side seam 5cm (2") from the top. This split creates the opening to thread your ribbon through to make the drawstring.

If your fabric is a bit raggedy on the edge, just fold the edge in and press it down. Stitch it if it continues to misbehave. It will be enclosed in the drawstring casing.

Fold the top of the pillowcase over 2.5cm (1") and press. Stitch all the way around to create your casing. 

 Each side of the pillowcase will look slightly different because one side will have that extra envelope of fabric. Once it is turned right side out, you won't see that and it makes no different to your casing.

 Take your ribbon and use a safety pin to thread your it through the casing.

Turn your pillowcase right sides out.  Tie your ribbon to the desired length. You are finished!

You might find that the bag is a bit too long for your liking. Just turn it back inside out, and stitch across the bottom of the bag at the desired length. Cut off any excess.

As I mentioned earlier, mine will be used as a laundry bag for Lucy, but it can be used for anything! Old pillowcases are often very soft due to be washed so often, which makes them a great choice for a lingerie bag. I also like to pack a bag like this when I go on a trip - it is handy to keep dirty washing separate from the clean items in your bag or suitcase.

If you make one, please share it with us over at my Flickr group!


  1. I'm so making some of these - keeping my eyes peeled for pillowcases at the op shops from now on!

    Thanks for the great idea

  2. Love your thrifted pillowcase, so pretty! Makes for a gorgeous drawstring bag! Love it!!!

  3. Nice idea! I love the print!!! It would have made a lovely vintage style romper too! hehehe :)

  4. I've been wanting to make some of these to put wine bottles in for gifts. Those wine bags are so expensive and this would be a quick and easy project to use up some smaller scraps.

  5. Adorable and great use of something the repurpose! That fabric is really pretty as well. This treat looks delectable! I would love for you to come by and link up to my Creative Inspirations party happening NOW! I would love to have you there!
    Stacey of Embracing Change

  6. I am to submit a report on this niche your post has been very very helpfull buy wine bags

  7. I wonder if you could use a zipper instead of a drawstring on this project for a zippered bag??

  8. Thank you so much! I recently made a fort kit for my son and used this tutorial to make a bag to keep everything in. Thank you!!!


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