Homemade Christmas – Play Market Bags

I have been so excited about the Farmers Market that Mr. Steam and I made for the mini Steams. What is even more awesome is that the kids have been playing pretend shopping and pretend cooking all week! PERFECT TIMING!

But they have been shopping with a box. A BOX? Who shops with a box (ok besides people at Costco and Sams)?

So yep, I decided to make them some market bags.

NotYourNormalSteam Play Grocery Bag Tutorial

What’cha think? Cute huh? The only real challenge for the bag were the French seams. I am pretty happy with how it turned out.

Here’s how I made it if you want to make your own.

I used two fabrics. The floral and the plaid. The inside of the bag is opposite of the outside of the bag (plaid on the bigger side, and flowers on the smaller side). But you could do it in all the same fabric.

** Please note this is NOT how I would assemble this bag if I wanted to use it as a true market bag. The bottom will not hold much weight. But I thought it was easier to manage than true French seams on the bottom. **

Cut:

  • Flower fabric
    • Big Side – 2 pieces – 11″ x 9″
    • Small side – 2 pieces – 11″ x 6″
    • Bottom – 1 piece – 8.5″ x 5.5″
  • Plaid fabric
    • Big Side – 2 pieces – 11″ x 9″
    • Small side – 2 pieces – 11″ x 6″
    • Bottom – 1 piece – 8.5″ x 5.5″
    • Handles – 2 pieces – 4″ x 16″
  • Fusible Interfacing (I used Craft Fuse)
    • Bottom – 1 piece – 8″ x 5″
    • Handles – 2 pieces – 1″ x 15″
  1. Line up 4 sets of fabric. 2 sets – One big side plaid and one big side floral – right sides together. 2 sets – One small side plaid and one small side floral – right sides together.
  2. Sew a 1/4″ seam on the top an bottom of both big side and small side sets.NotYourNormalSteam Play Grocery Bag Tutorial
  3. Flip all four panels wrong sides together, press, and top stitch the top seam.NotYourNormalSteam Play Grocery Bag Tutorial
  4. Now we are going to start building the French seams on the sides of the bag. Put a small side panel on the large side panel right sides together. Sew about a 1/8″ seam.NotYourNormalSteam Play Grocery Bag Tutorial
  5. Press the seam with the wrong sides together. Sew a 3/8″ seam. This will encase the raw seam. In other words a French seam.NotYourNormalSteam Play Grocery Bag Tutorial
  6. Now do the same thing with the other small panel. Lay the 2nd panel on the other side of the large panel – right sides together. Sew a 1/8″ seam. Press with wrong sides together. Then sew a 3/8″ seam. NotYourNormalSteam Play Grocery Bag Tutorial
  7. Your “bag” should now look like this. Only with your fabrics of course.NotYourNormalSteam Play Grocery Bag Tutorial
  8. Repeat this process for the final large panel of the bag. You should now have a bag with four sides and 4 pretty French seams. Now we just have to add the bottom and handles. NotYourNormalSteam Play Grocery Bag Tutorial
  9. On to the bottom panel of the bag. For this I added a bit of interfacing to give the bottom some stiffness. Put your 2 pieces of bottom panel fabric right sides together. Fuse the interfacing to one side. Sew a 1/4″ seam leaving about 3″ open for flipping. Clip the corners (see below).NotYourNormalSteam Play Grocery Bag Tutorial
  10. Flip the panel so it’s right sides out. Tuck in the turning hole and top stitch all the way around. NotYourNormalSteam Play Grocery Bag Tutorial
  11. Pin the bottom panel to the bottom of the bag.NotYourNormalSteam Play Grocery Bag Tutorial
  12. Sew all the way around, but stop about 1/4″ from each corner. Be sure to not sew in the sides of your bag. Its a little tricky, but I know you can do it!NotYourNormalSteam Play Grocery Bag Tutorial
  13. Now we are in the home stretch! We just need to make some handles and attach them. The hard stuff is done! Wahooo! Take one of the handle pieces. Fold in half lengthwise and press. Open it up, put the interfacing right up against the fold and press.NotYourNormalSteam Play Grocery Bag Tutorial
  14. Fold both edges to the middle and press.NotYourNormalSteam Play Grocery Bag Tutorial
  15. Fold back in 1/2 and press. You will now have 4 layers of fabric with both raw edges on the inside.NotYourNormalSteam Play Grocery Bag Tutorial
  16. Top stitch the edges.NotYourNormalSteam Play Grocery Bag Tutorial
  17. Line up your handles where you want them on the bag.NotYourNormalSteam Play Grocery Bag Tutorial
  18. Fold about 1/2″ of the raw edge under then pin to the bag.NotYourNormalSteam Play Grocery Bag Tutorial
  19. Sew the handle down to the back. Repeat for both handles.NotYourNormalSteam Play Grocery Bag Tutorial

Wahoo! You are done. See it wasn’t that bad. And now you have a cute pretend market bag. Your bag should finish up somewhere in the range of 10″ x 8″ x 5″.

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About NotYourNormalSteam

I love to make things, food, paper, fabric, the medium doesn’t really matter. I am also an obsessive planner. The day after Christmas I am already working out plans for the next year.
This entry was posted in Stupendous Sewing and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Homemade Christmas – Play Market Bags

  1. Barbra says:

    Beautiful, I have been searching and searching for a bag with french seams!!

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