fully lined drawstring bag

How to Make a Fully Lined Drawstring Bag with Boxed Bottom

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A fully lined drawstring bag is so practical but incredibly stylish. A matching or contrasting lining really makes an ordinary storage item into a unique stylish solution.

You can make one whatever size you like so they are suitable for large items like sports equipment and they also make adorable gift bags too.

In this tutorial I am going to show you how to make a cute lined drawstring bag that looks great on a dressing table or to hold a gift but feel free to change the measurements to suit your needs. This size bag worked really well being made from 2 fat quarters. In fact, I got 2 of these bags out of the 2 fat quarters!

Small bags are great made from craft cotton fabrics or similar but if you want a large sturdy bag you may want to consider a canvas fabric or something similar.

If you would like to watch me making my DIY lined drawstring bag then scroll down to the bottom of the written instructions and watch my video tutorial.

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You will need

Fabric such as cotton fat quarters

Drawstring such as rope, ribbon or a drawstring made from your fabric

Matching thread

Sewing supplies

Cut out your Fabric

You will need to cut the following pieces from your fabrics:

2 main fabric bag pieces measuring 9″tall by 7″ wide

2 lining bag pieces measuring 9″ tall by 7″ wide.

drawstring bag fabric pieces cut

Sew the Basic Drawstring Bag

Take the two main bag pieces and place one on top of the other with the right sides facing. Pin or clip around 3 sides, leaving the top open.

Repeat this process for the lining piece but mark a distance of approximately 3″ along the bottom of the pieces that you will not sew. I have marked mine with large clips.

Sew around the sides that you have pinned remembering to leave a gap in the bottom of the lining. I suggest a 0.5″ seam allowance.

bag pieces sewn

I recommend pressing your seams open so that they are less bulky when the bag is finished. If you are making a small bag this can be quite tricky. Another option is to run your fingernail along the seam forcing the seam open and it will help it to stay open.

To form the box bottom to the bag you need to take the main bag and lining in turn and do the following:

Fold the bag such that the side seam line sup with the bottom seam and pin the two together an inch away from the corner. Repeat this with the other corner. Then sew along these seams.

To reduce the bulk in the bag cut off the corner that you have now made leaving a seam allowance similar to the one you used on the other seams.

Now turn the main bag the right way out and slide it into the lining. This should mean that the right sides are facing each other. Once they are lined up perfectly, pin or clip around the top of the bags making sure that the side seams are lined up. Then sew around the top of the bags securing them together.

Turn the whole thing the right way out by pulling it all through the hole that you left in the bottom of the lining. Then sew up the hole in the lining either using an invisible slip stitch or simply machine sewing it closed as I have done here.

Push the lining into the main bag so that you have now made a bag. Make sure that the top edge is lined up perfectly and pin or clip the two bags together. There should be no lining showing on the outside and no bag showing on the inside. Topstitch the two together close to the edge.

Make the Drawstring Casing

You now need a casing, or slot, for the drawstring. By now you must have decided on your drawstring material of choice. I have used a ribbon in this tutorial but if you watch the video tutorial you will see how I made a drawstring out of my lining fabric.

Measure 1.5″ down from the top of the bag and mark it all the way around the bag. I used pins but you could use an air erasable pen. Then measure down from that line the width of your drawstring plus some extra to allow it to easily slide through the casing. For example, my ribbon is 3/8″ wide and I made the casing 5/8″ wide.

Once both lines are clearly marked sew along them both all the way around the bag. For added strength I recommend doing some reverse stitching over the side seams as you go.

In order to be able to use your casing you will need a way in. At each side seam you need to undo a few stitches between the two rows of stitching you just completed. Take care! You must only undo the stitches from the side seam that are in the casing.

Hole Cut in Drawstring Casing

Adding the Drawstring to the Bag

You will need 2 drawstrings. How long they are is up to you. They must be at least the distance around your bag plus a few inches. I made my ribbon 18″ long. Attach a safety pin to one end of your drawstring and feed it into one of the holes that you made. Feed it all the way around the casing and back out of the same hole. Now you can either stitch or tie the two ends together.

Drawstring Through Bag Casing

Repeat with the other drawstring but using the other hole in the casing.

Fully Lined Drawstring Bag

Your bag is now complete but if anything is still troubling you try watching the video and see if it helps.

Video Tutorial

And finally …

Well Done! You now have a completed fully lined drawstring bag with boxed bottom! Now you know what you are doing you can make them for any situation you like and any size you like. Who wouldn’t want to receive one of these?

How about using kids fabric for cute storage bags for all those small toys such as Lego?

If you like sewing then check out some of my other sewing tutorials:

How to Sew Hair Scrunchies

Sew a Simple Tote Bag

Make a Fabric Corner Bookmark

Teabag Wallet Tutorial

Super Stylish yet Simple Infinity Scarf

Sew a Cute Origami Pouch Bag

Please leave me a comment below letting me know how you get on with your lined drawstring bag and what you are using it for. Let’s pool our ideas!

lined drawstring bag

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  1. This is fantastic! I have made similar bags but not with an inside liner. This is great! I’m going to have try this! Thanks so much for sharing!

  2. This is adorable! I have got to get a sewing machine. Thanks for sharing on Happiness is Homemade at LifeasaLEOWife.com. Our readers on the Traffic Jam Weekend link party would love this too. We’d love to have you share on there as well. It runs Thursday thru Sunday night. I love the little bee fabric by the way!

    1. Thank you! You can sew without a sewing machine but it takes such a long time! Definitely a good investment.

      1. Fab tutorial! How would I calculate fabric measurements for a large bag to fit a grazing board to protect it. I like the living with the ruffle at the top and using cord for the two drawstrings. The polished timber grazing board is 1metre long x 50cm wide (and 10cm high as it has legs)

        1. It is actually quite tricky to work out your sizes. Basically, you need the height of bag you want plus 8cm for casing and ruffle plus allowance for box corners and on the width the width you want plus seam allowances plus box corners. I think for your use you will need main fabric and lined fabric pieces approximately 125cm high by 65cm. I am hoping that will allow enough extra fabric for the box corners. If you are nervous I suggest you add another 5cm to these measurements and try your board as you go. You can always trim some off! Remember that your boxed corner seams will need to be sewn a little further away from the corners. Pin them and check them with your board before sewing. Good luck!

      2. Perfectly simple, clear instructions, thank you! I just bought kitchen towels at Ikea that have turned out to be useless as towels, so they’re becoming gift bags for Christmas!

  3. This is a really easy and fun pattern and makes beautifully finished bags! I’m making them to go into the hotel bags for my wedding guests in September using fabric that I purchased throughout the years. I’ve got some really fun combinations! Can’t wait to finish them and load them up with goodies! Thank you for the great pattern tutorial and YouTube Video!

    1. I am so glad it has been useful for you. What a fabulous useful for them. Good luck with all your wedding preparations and I hope you have a wonderful wedding day!

  4. Hello There Christine! First, I just need to comment that you sound like my dear friend Leslie who is also a an excellent bag maker; she lives in Yorkshire. I felt so happy listening to you.
    Secondly, I happened upon your excellent tutorial in a search for quick & easy holiday gift projects. Your video is perfect – clear and concise with great camera work. I love the versatility of this bag as it can be run up in a wide array of sizes and using materials from plain cotton scraps to fancier posh fabrics and embellishments

    Thank you….I’ve subscribed and look forward to seeing other great crafting projects on your channel.


    1. Thank you so much for this lovely comment. I am so glad that you enjoyed this tutorial and I hope that you will enjoy many more.

  5. Very thankful for this tutorial. I was looking for a drawstring bag that was simple yet elevated and this is it. I am working on my first one now which will likely be a Christmas present holding bag. Thank you again.

  6. I had purchased an inexpensive Construction Garage for my grandson and a Princess Castle for my granddaughter that had many pieces and parts for Christmas. I noticed that there was no place to store these pieces and parts so I used your tutorial to make matching drawstring bags. I used Princess and Construction fabric. Can’t wait to give these gifts and see the look of relief on my daughter’s face to know there is storage for all the pieces and parts. I have seen many drawstring bag tutorials but they never seemed to come out quite right. Your instructions were simple and easy to follow and the results were fabulous! Thank You!

    1. Wow. Thank you for sharing what you are using them for. Fabulous use – I know what you mean about pieces with kids toys! I am sure they will love them!

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