Being rather bored with my lunchbox, I thought I'd have a go at making something prettier.

I looked around and found some fabric I really like. This is the perfect opportunity to use some of those buttons from my stash.

Difficulty: Medium

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Materials: PVC fabric, thread, elastic, buttons

Equipment: ruler, pencil, fabric scissors, cardboard, paper scissors, PVA glue, sewing machine, Teflon foot, pinking shears, hand-sewing needle

Cut out the fabric pieces

You will need two pieces for the front and back, each 20cm by 32cm; two pieces for the sides, each 12.5cm by 32cm. One piece for the base, 20cm by 12.5cm; and a piece which will cover the base support, 25cm by 16cm. The base support is made with a piece of cardboard 16cm by 9cm, covered with the PVC and glued into position. Let this dry completely; it will be placed into the bottom of the finished bag for added support.

Stitch up

Sew the front panel on to the base panel where the sides measure 20cm, then sew the back piece to the other 20cm side of the base panel.


Pin the longest edge of one of the side panels to the edge of the back panel from top to bottom. Sew this on the sewing machine. When you reach the bottom of that longest edge, keep your needle in the fabric but lift the presser foot, then you have to turn the fabric so that the two bottom edges meet then carry on sewing. Do the other corner the same way and repeat on the other side panel.

Finish off

Each edge that you have sewn needs to be top-stitched. Using a Teflon foot helps stop the fabric sticking. Then use pinking shears to finish the top edge. To make the fastening, create a loop with a piece of elastic that will fit around your button and sew this in the centre, 6cm from the top edge of the back. I covered this with a decorative button. Sew another button on the other side of the bag in the centre, 9cm from the bottom edge. Insert the cardboard base.