Quick and simple toy bag

Title picture


My daughter loves to sing; Baa Baa is her favourite. Her childminder Alison has a set of finger puppets from the Puppet Factory that accompany a nursery rhyme book. Etta LOVES them and always wants to bring them home with her.

Well on Saturday, Grandma bought Etta her very own set (totally spoiled but it’s grandparents’ prerogative).

Nursery rhymes

Now I don’t know about you, but if you have small children you often find sets of toys scattered in the far corners of the house, garden and car. I didn’t want that to happen to this set so I whipped up a little quick and easy cotton bag to keep them all together.

I have an over-locker which made this bag even quicker to put together. If you don’t have an over-locker, some sewing machines have an over-locking stitch or failing that a wide zig-zag stitch will do or alternatively you can hem the sides instead.


What you will need:


  • A piece of fabric big enough to fit what you want in it! Best thing to do is take it’s proposed contents and place them on top and fold the fabric over to get the size. Allow for a top gusset and hems if you are doing them.

I used a lightweight cotton approx 8 inches wide by 22 inches long (so bag will be 8 x 10 when finished as i will fold in half and allows 1 inch either side for the top gusset).

  • Ribbon or chord to make the drawstring (3 – 4 times width of your bag).
  • Cotton thread for sewing



  • Sewing machine, over-locker or needle if hand-sewing
  • Scissors
  • Pins
  • Safety Pin
  • Iron



1. Once you have fathomed how big you need your piece of material then cut it out and iron it.

2. Next we are going to over-lock all of the edges, so again, if you do not have an over-locker, you can use a zig-zag stitch or hem each edge.

3. Now iron it again to set the stitches.


4. Next we are going to iron a gusset in the top of each side for the ribbon / chord to pass through. This needs to accommodate whatever you are using so I made mine around 3/4 inch deep).

5. Pin and sew the gussets then iron to set the stitches.

6. Now fold the piece of fabric (right side to right side) so that the gusseted edges match at the top and pin.4-6

7. We are now going to sew down each edge up to the gusset being careful not to sew up the gusset openings.

8. Make sure you do a back stitch at the start and end of the sides to lock your stitches in place.

9. Cut any loose cotton ends.


10. Turn the bag the right way out then measure and cut your ribbon or chord and attach the safety pin to one of the ends.

11. Feed the safety pin through the gusset all the way around and out the other side.

12. Remove the safety pin and tie knots in the end of the ribbon / chord.


13. Now fill with the toys and tie in a lovely big bow.

14. Pat yourself on the back and make a mental list of all the other toys that need bags, or in my case all the other items i can make bags for… (shoes, hats, cutlery for picnics….)


I hope you found this straightforward to follow and not too vague. I wanted it to be adaptable to whatever your bag needs are. I also hope you don’t feel cheated that I have used an over-locker. If you sew more than once a week I would thoroughly recommend investing in one.

Of course there are tons of variations, you can add pockets or sides and a bottom.. gosh there’s an idea!



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