I’ve been lusting after a bucket bag for about a year now, and never having found the perfect one at a price I could afford, I started looking into making my own. I had seen a few other DIY tutorials on these and figured I need to take a chance at making my own. It’s a very ‘in’ bag so I guessed now was the time to try it. I stumbled across the perfect pink faux leather in hickeys last week so I bought just half a meter and put this on my to-do list. And it finally got done.
If you’re looking to try your hand at making yourself a handbag, a bucket bag is the place to start. I would imagine it’s the easiest to put together as you can easily make your own pattern and the sewing process is quite quick and uncomplicated. So let’s go.
YOU WILL NEED:
1/2 metre of fabric
1/2 metre of lining fabric
8 eyelets and tool
clockwise r-l : circle of fabric for base // 3” piece for strap // tie for bag // eyelets, thread, tape measure // fabric scissors // large rectangle of fabric for sides of bag
THE MAIN BODY OF THE BAG
Using whatever circular thing you have, trace around it with a pencil on the underside of the fabric. Cut it out.
To create the sides of the bag you will need a long rectangular piece of fabric. To get the measurements for this you will need to measure the circumference of the circular base you just cut. This will be the measurement for the long side of the rectangle. The short side is whatever height you want your bag to be (plus 1cm seam allowance for turning down the edges).
Pin the two short ends of the main rectangle together and sew a straight line from top to bottom.
Pin the base the the now tubular body of the bag. Use as many pins as you have as this will ensure it’s easier to sew. Take your time when sewing this as you’ll want to get it right. Repeat this whole process to create the lining of the bag.
LINING THE BAG
Once the lining is also sewn up, pop it inside your bag, making sure the seams aren’t visible inside the bag. You may want to trim the lining a little bit shorted than the sides of the bag, as this will make it easier to turn down the edges of the bag. Turn them down 1cm and pin all along it. Don’t worry too much about damaging the fabric as you will be sewing over it anyway.
I also added reinforcement to the bottom of the bag, between the lining and the outer fabric. To do this you’ll need to cut a circle of cardboard, using the same template as you did for the base, and then carefully cut about 1cm off around the edges so it will fit the size of the base now. You’ll also want to stick this down to hold it in place so you can glue it or use double sided tape. Whatever works for you. It will ensure the bag keeps it’s shape when there’s something inside it.
MAKING THE TIE
To make the string that will tie the bag shut, cut about a 1.5 – 2 inch strip of fabric, about a metre long. fold the sides of the fabric in, like the first picture, and then fold that in half, like the 2nd picture. Sew a line of stitching down the open side of this, and you’ll have your tie for your bag. This is also how you’ll make the strap.
INSERTING THE EYELETS
To make sure the eyelets are inserted evenly, fold the bag in half ensuring the seam is in the center, and then fold in the two sides, like the picture above. Clip this in place while you work.
Using the measuring tape, mark where you want your holes to go, making sure they’re all equal distance from the side and the top. mark two with a pencil, and with a sharp object, press into the pencil marks to mark through all the fabric.
Cut a small hole to place the eyelet into. Make sure it’s slightly smaller than the eyelet and it’s a snug fit. Use the instructions of your eyelet set or tool to insert the eyelets. I used the instructions I had, the tool that came with the eyelets and a hammer.
MAKING THE STRAP
using the same method as for the tie, take a piece of fabric 4 times thicker than your want your strap to be. Fold it in half, and half again, like before, and sew down one side. I added an extra line of stitching down the other side, and then down the center, just for some detail.
To attach the strap, fold in about 1cm of the end of the strap and pin it onto the side of the bag. Make sure it’s perfectly in line with the other side of the strap. Pin the strap in place and sew around the strap in a square/rectangular motion, repeating it twice for extra security.