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The weather is getting warmer (finally), and that means more time spent outside wandering. I know I do more shopping in the spring and summer time, including going to the local markets, garage sales, and street vendors. What really comes in handy when I decide to pick something up is a reusable bag in my purse! Our Charlie reusable bag is an awesome sewing pattern to make for yourself and also helps the environment and keep down your fabric scrap pile. Check out how easy it is to sew!

To make this bag all you need is 3/4 yd of fabric and your good to go. You don’t even need to add seam allowances… 5/8" seam allowance is included in the pattern! What I like most about this pattern is the integrated sewn pouch that it can fold into, so that it is easier to carry around in your purse without too much extra bulk.

Step 1- Assemble pattern.

Step 2- Separate pattern pieces. Cut bag pattern down “CUT ON FOLD” line. Lay on (folded, when needed) fabric, pin, and cut.

Step 3- You should have two bag pieces which have been cut on the fold, and one smaller piece for the bag’s pouch.

Step 4- Overlock all edges. Do not trim any off of the straight edges. On the handles’ curved edges, trim off the 5/8’’ seam allowance.

Step 5- Sew the pouch. Fold at notches; the shortest flap goes in the center, the longest on the top. Stitch the sides

Step 6- Sew the tops of the handles together. These are flat felled seams (see how-to here).

Step 7- Sew side seams, wrong side together. On one seam, place the pouch according to the notches. The pouch’s
opening should face toward bag’s center, away from the seam allowance.

Step 8- Fold outer bottom corners in at notches, then sew bag bottom.

There you have it! When I first started sewing, a bag was my first project and I still have and use it today. Try it out yourself.

Happy Sewing!



  • Dscf1220_large

    Mar 22, 2014, 03.03 PMby unahowe

    I love this bag. I downloaded this bag 3 years ago. I make this bag for a women’s shelter for women. I have made it bigger by enlarger the length of the shoulder handle to wear the bag as a cross over. I have used lighter weight upholstery fabric. THANK YOU, BURDA for such a great bag.

  • Denise_wild_lovesewing_large

    Mar 19, 2014, 04.57 AMby Denise Wild

    Its a great idea to keep one of these in your purse. I’ll have to make a bright one for spring!

  • Sushi_party_large

    Mar 18, 2014, 01.33 AMby notdeadredhead

    Austin’s been having people bring their own grocery bags for about a year now, so these have been amazing! :^D Plus, you can make them out of fun fabrics that almost always get compliments!

  • Missing

    Mar 16, 2014, 09.04 PMby sherrilm

    Los Angeles is making people bring their own bags now, so this would be a perfect gift to my friends living in that area.

  • Micki_nov_2013_large

    Mar 16, 2014, 03.57 AMby Cocoa93

    This seems like an easy project. I will definitely try it.

  • Micki_nov_2013_large

    Mar 16, 2014, 03.46 AMby Cocoa93

    This seems like an easy project. I will definitely try it.

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