Making a zipper pouch, without fearing the zipper
So you want to make a zipper bag, but you’ve never sewn with a zipper before. Maybe you feel like your sewing abilities aren't that “advanced.” Well, today's your lucky day! This article will show you just how not-scary zippers actually are.
In today’s tutorial, we’ll walk through how to make a super easy zipper pouch. These zipper bags are great for gifts, and work great to make in an assembly-line if you’re looking to crank out a bunch.
I also like to use this sewing pattern to turn my finished embroideries into cute and practical items.
If you want to be fancy and add boxed corners to your zipper pouch, head over to our blog post: How to Sew a Simple Zipper Pouch with Boxed Corners.
The anatomy of a zipper
Before we start, let's do a quick run-through of the anatomy of the zipper.
Zipper Coil: This is what we typically think of as the zipper. It's made up of two sides of teeth that zip together.
Zipper Teeth: The individual little “teeth” that make up the zipper coil.
Zipper Tape: This is the fabric on either side of the zipper coil.
Zipper Slider: The part of the zipper that moves back and forth and helps “zip” the two coil sides together.
Zipper Pull: This is what you grab to move the slider.
Zipper Stop: That little block at the ends of the zipper coil, keeping the slider from falling off.
Zipper length: The length of the zipper coil. This is the zipper size that most packaging will refer to as the main measurement.
Step-by-step Zipper Pouch Instructions:
Now that we feel a little more confident with the parts of a zipper, let’s jump in to making our bag. You can sew along with me in the video below where I go through each step in real-time. Or keep scrolling for step-by-step directions. Plus, download the free printable PDF instructions at the bottom of this article.
Outer Fabric: 2 pieces cut to 10 3/4” x 8”
Lining Fabric: 2 pieces cut to 10 3/4” x 8”
Zipper: 1 zipper 9 3/4” (refers to the length of the zipper coil or teeth) Click here to check out our colorful zippers.
Basic sewing supplies: Sewing machine, sewing thread, sewing clips or pins, scissors
Zipper foot (optional)
*Note: The above measurements were what was used in the video. You can make your zipper pouch any size you like. Just make the fabric width 1” larger than the zipper coil (teeth).
Making the zipper pouch
Now that we have our supplies, let's get sewing!
***Click on any image below to jump to that part of the video tutorial on YouTube.***
Stack one outer fabric piece, one lining piece, and the zipper along the top edge in this order: Lining fabric with the right-side up; Zipper with the right-side up and the zipper pull on the left; Outer fabric with the right-side down. Use sewing clips to secure the top edge.
Sew the edge, placing the presser foot against the raised edge of the zipper coil. Note: If you want less zipper tape showing, switch to a zipper foot before sewing.
Flip the outer and lining fabric pieces open so the wrong-sides are together. Press the fabric away from the zipper.
Repeat steps 1-3 with the remaining fabric pieces and the zipper/fabric unit. Note: the zipper pull will now be on the right.
Sew along one of the folded edges about 1/8” from the edge. This “topstitch” will secure the fabric so that it doesn’t get stuck in the zipper and gives the pouch a nice, finished look. Repeat with the second folded edge.
Open the zipper about 3/4 of the way. Note: This is important - do not skip this step!
Grab both outer fabric pieces and place them right-sides together. Place the lining pieces right-sides together. The zipper will be sitting a bit awkwardly at this point. Squish the zipper flat by folding the coil (teeth) towards the lining side, and the zipper tape edges towards the outer fabric. Clip or pin in place. Repeat on the other side of the zipper. Clip or pin the fabric edges in place.
Sew all the way around the edge, leaving a 4-inch opening on the bottom edge of the lining fabric.
If you'd like boxed corners, now's the time to add them. Jump to our boxed corner zipper pouch tutorial by clicking here.
Snip off the corners near the seam.
Turn the pouch right-side out through the opening in the lining. Use your fingers or a chopstick to help push the corners out all the way.
Finally, sew shut the opening in the lining by folding in the raw edges and sewing near the edge. Stuff the finished lining into the pouch and voila, you have a fun zipper pouch!
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