Frida’s flowers project bag: lining tutorial

An easy method for lining a crochet bag (some sewing but not much...) From crafternoontreats.com

An easy method for lining a crochet bag (some sewing but not much…) From crafternoontreats.com

If you are good at sewing and can make a box lining, feel free to ignore my ramblings. I am quite inexperienced at sewing and although I’m improving, I’ve a long way to go. This tutorial is to help people in the same boat – to show that if I can do it, so can you!

The tutorial below shows how to line a larger bag using individual lining pads for each crochet square. The linings are reinforced to support the bag, then hand stitched to the crochet squares before the bag is crocheted together.

For all the pattern and tutorial links please visit:

What you’ll need

  • Cotton or other suitable lining material – enough to make 10 squares 2 inches (5cm) larger than your crocheted squares.
  • Plain or contrasting cotton for the pockets – you will need enough for 5 pieces that can be folded to form the pockets. For each of my pockets I cut a piece of material 13 inches by 18 inches (and for the double pocket I cut two pieces).
  • Table protector or heavy interfacing to stiffen the bag
  • Coordinating sewing thread
  • A sewing machine
  • Needle and scissors
  • Lace for decoration (aka, hiding wonky stitches)

Lining the base square

The base has no pockets, so you will need two squares of lining material and a square of table protector or heavy duty interfacing.

Place the cotton material together, right side to right side and put the square of stiffener inside, making sure its central. Pin in place and use a sewing machine to sew around 3 sides, making sure the stitching is close to the edge of the stiffener, but gives it a little room so that the lining square does not buckle.

The photo below shows the stitching along the right and left side and the top, but the bottom is left open.

Sandwich lining

Remove the piece of table protector, cut across the corners with scissors with a diagonal cut to reduce bulk then press the seams open. Trim them down if necessary so they are no more than 1/2 an inch (1cm). Turn the lining the right way out. Prod out the corners using something like a chopstick. Put the stiffener back in and make sure it is fully inside, with the bottom edge close to the stitching.

Fold in the unsewn edge, pin in place then handstitch to close.

 

CLosing the open side of the lining

You should end up with a stiffened base that looks good from both sides:

Lining for the base of the bag

Lining the squares for the bag sides

You can line all of your squares using the above method if you want. I chose to make pockets in the linings for all the bag sides so I can organise my hooks and have room for a pattern or magazine as well as my phone and general ‘stuff’.

As well as two lining pieces for each square, plus a piece of table protector, you also need a folded piece of contrasting cotton. A guide to the dimensions is here, but you can make your pockets as tall or short as you like. Mine were about 1/3 the height of the crocheted square.

Lining pieces for pocketed sides

To make divisions in the lining, pin your folded pocket material to one piece of your lining material and mark the divisions using a pen with ink that disappears when you iron it. This is my pocket for my longer, Tunisian hooks.

Sewing the pocket compartments

After marking the divisions, use a sewing machine to go in straight lines along the marks.

Sewing the pocket compartments by machine

I also made this lining for another square with hook pockets – but I did a line of horizontal sewing so that it is suitable for shorter, ordinary crochet hooks.

Sewn pocket

To make a double pocket, pin together two pieces of folded material and sew small divisions, then pin to a lining square and just sew together at the sides.

Making a double pocket

Sew to the second lining square, right side to right side, leaving space for the stiffening square in the same way as above.

This provides a pocket for hooks in front, and for a pattern or magazine behind.

Double pocket

Oversewing to keep the stiffener in place

This is something I didn’t do but wish I had! Before you sew your linings in place, use a sewing machine to make one line of stitches through all thicknesses of fabric and table protector at the top and bottom of each square, and along each side, just a tiny bit from the edges. This will stop the stiffening material moving around inside the lining once the bag is assembled.

Adding decoration

You can decorate the pockets as you want – I add lace for two reasons. Firstly, it helps cover up the top of the pocket where my sewing is not very neat and secondly, it is handy for storing darning needles, pins and stitch markers.

I made all my lining squares then hand sewed the lace in place before sewing the linings to the crocheted squares.

The lined bag

When all the linings are sewn into place, the squares can then be crocheted together. It sounds obvious, but its easy to get carried away at this point! Make sure that all the side squares are positioned so that the opening of the pockets will be at the top of the bag…

Five squares of bag lined and ready for assembly

For all the pattern and tutorial links please visit: