Wednesday, July 28, 2010

The fabric box

Good evening!
My pharmacology test went well, in case you were wondering. I had planned to get this tutorial posted around 3pm, however it actually rained here in desert-like South Texas and the power was down for several hours. Which means no iron, sewing machine, computer, or internet. I ended up passing the time, cutting fabric for future projects. During my silent solitude of fabric cutting I started thinking how we as a culture have become so dependent on electricity. It almost made me want to get a foot pedal sewing machine--then it's like a work out and sewing all in one! That is an entirely different topic however....

Anyways back to the tutorial. A few days ago I put together the first tote depicted in the "sneek peek" post and I liked the out come, but the whole thing was kinda floppy looking. So I decided to install cardboard sides/bottom in the next one to see if that helped stiffen it up and if it was actually do-able.

The one on the left has cardboard, and the one on the right has just one layer of interfacing.

Cardboard is very unforgiving and I had quite a hard time lining everything up perfectly--If I ever make anymore, I'll just interface the outside and liner of the box. this should be plenty stiff to hold fabric, yarn and other various semi-light weight projects.

So here are the supplies:
- 1/2 yard of fabric for the outside
- 1/2 yard of fabric for the liner
- a little over 2 yards of 20 inch heavy fuse-able interfacing (if you want to interface liner & outside
- bias tape or materials to make double bias tape (1/2 inch or an inch, its your preference)
- approximately 3 cereal boxes, duct tape (optional)
- sewing machine, matching thread, scissors, ruler, fabric marker, bias tape maker, pins

So first we need to cut lots of fabric, interfacing, cardboard, and bias.

First I cut my cardboard, because I actually used it as a template to cut all the fabric/interfacing.

You need to cut:
1: 10" x 10" square
4: 10" x 8" rectangles (Why 2 inches shorter? because we are going to fold over the top about 2 inches)

The for the fabric you need:
5: 10" x 10" squares of outer fabric
5: 10" x 10" squares of liner
5: 10" x 10" squares of interfacing (add an additional 5 pieces if you aren't using cardboard)
Approximately 40 inches of double fold 1 or 1/2 inch bias tape.

Lots of cut up cereal boxes!

Go ahead and interface your outer fabric (also interface you liner if you aren't using cardboard), and make your bias tape since you are at the iron and its hot already! If you need a reminder about interfacing you can go to my previous tutorial here and scroll down a bit.

I made my bias tape for the this tutorial, but the first box I made I had some left over from a quilt. Plus I wanted to try out my fancy new easy-to-use bias tape maker!!

This made it soooooo much easier, quick, and very straight bias tape!! LOVE IT! (plus I bought it with a 40% off coupon--whoo hoo!)

Once you are all done interfacing, take two of your outer pieces, put them face to face and sew up the sides with a 1/4 inch seam

Now continue doing this until you have a row of 4 squares sewed together, and a single square left.

Now we are going to sew the bottom in, one end and your single piece face to face, and sew the red line

Now lay your piece flat, and rotate the "bottom" over

Like sew the red lines together

Now again, rotate the bottom and sew face to face...

Now finish it up by connecting the two sides and the bottom piece to make your box

Now repeat these same steps for your liner....

Now press the seams so your box will hold its shape a little better.

Assemble your cardboard box, but first measure your fabric to see how much it "shrank" due to seam allowance, trim the cardboard, and duct tape together. Frequently check to see if it fits okay as you tape it together.

Now you are going to make a cardboard sandwich, like this

Now pin your bias on from the inside, because the inside is going to be facing out once we fold it over and you want it to look pretty!!! make sense?

Now sew your bias in using the same color thread...I'm telling you this because I forgot and had to ripe white thread out of my black bias for an inch or too....

Sewing the corners is a bit like riding a roller coaster and going through a loop, its fun, scary, and a little go SLOW!! take your time!!!

Now fold your box top over a bit and do a happy dance!!!

I already have a stack of projects ready to go in my fabric box!!

So what are you going to do with your fabric box? easy and cheap storage solution for the kid's toys? Store your fabric scraps? Hide your clutter? The possibilities are endless, the best part is you can make them any size to fit your space!!

Thanks for stopping by!! Don't forget to leave a comment and tell me if you plan on doing this tutorial, I would love to see pictures!! Also do me a favor and go the top of the page and on the right hand side click "follow" so you can get up-to-date info on all my posts and tutorials!!!


  1. Thank you so much for this tutorial, I love it.

  2. These are very cute! And I love that it's recycled boxes. And you're doing this while you're testing! W-O-W! Well done! Thanks for posting ... I've added a link. Check it out and add a few links of your own!

  3. Excellent idea! Now I can organize my craft studio with custom boxes that match! On the cheap! It's a win win, thanks!

  4. Awesome! Found this on pinterest! this will work great in the kids room!

  5. I'm excited to try this! Quick question (as a sewing newbie), if I don't use cardboard and use the interfacing, do I put the interfacing on the fabric, including the area that will be folded over? Or do I put it up to the area that will fold over? Thanks!


I love reading your comments!! Thanks for sharing your thoughts

Related Posts with Thumbnails