Dopp Kit with Lining – Tutorial by Ute


Hello my friends! Today, I’m excited to share a tutorial that my dear friend Ute created. When she posted her beautifully made dopp kit as part of the Sewing Happiness Winter Tour, I noticed that she added a lining (the pattern in my book is sans lining to make it extra easy for beginners). I loved that and casually asked her if she’d want to do a little tutorial. She agreed and as usual, she went above and beyond and whipped one up in a jiffy, complete with gorgeous photos (that fabric!!).

Take it away Ute!


I am so excited to share a tutorial with you on how to line the dopp kit from “Sewing Happiness” – or any other boxy pouch. Thank you so much for inviting me, Sanae!

One of the things I made for the Sewing Happiness Winter Tour was the dopp kit as a Christmas present for my father. Since it was intended as a toiletry bag I lined it with coated fabric that it could easily be cleaned and wiped.

At least for me this process was not very intuitive and maybe a little tutorial can help you too!

Let´s go!


  • Two rectangular pieces of fabric for the exterior (I used 15 inches by 10 inches of cotton – linen canvas of Nani Iro “beautiful life”)
  • Two pieces of the same size for the lining (I used water repellent/coated fabric)
  • A zip at least as wide as your fabric or longer (I used a 17-inch zip)
  • coordinating thread


  • Interfacing for the exterior
  • Twill tape or other fabric/leather for zipper tabs or handles


The first steps are the same as assembling a simple, lined zippered pouch.


Make a “sandwich” by laying one piece of exterior fabric right side up, put the zipper with the teeth down and the pull to the left and layer the lining – wrong side up- on top of it.

Align zipper tape edge and fabric edges. You can let your zip hang over the edge if it is longer.

On top of the lining mark your seam allowance at ½ inch away from the edge at both sides.


Use your zipper foot and sew with a ¼ inch seam allowance. Start and stop where you marked your fabric.

Now flip the fabric so that the wrong sides are facing each other and press away from the zipper.

Take the second piece of exterior fabric, right side up, place the zipper with the teeth down and the pull to the right side and layer the lining – wrong side up – on top of it. Attach zipper like above.

Again, flip the fabrics so that the wrong sides are facing each other and press away from the zipper.


Topstitch along each side of the zipper.


Place exterior and lining right sides together and close the bottom of the pouch.

Leave an opening in the lining or exterior for turning the pouch right side out. I left an opening in the exterior because hand-stitching the coated lining would not have given me nice results.

Center your seams on top of the zipper and put your tab(s)/handles in place, sandwiching them between the exterior layers on one side or both. Pin exterior pieces and lining pieces together.


Starting at the side without the zipper pull, fold back the lining and close the seam, sewing over the zip. I like to use my zipper foot for that.

Repeat for the lining.

For the other side open the zip at least half way and proceed in the same manner.


Trim seam allowances and zip.

Box all eight corners by pinching them so that the seam is in the middle, sew perpendicular to the seam, 2 inches from the tip of the triangle.

Trim seam allowances of all corners. You will now have something looking like this:


Turn pouch to the right side through the opening! You are almost finished!


Now close the opening with a few hand stitches and your pouch is ready to be filled and used!

ute-doppkit11 ute-doppkit12

I hope this was helpful!


Thanks so much, Ute! I gave the tutorial a whirl myself and it was so fun to add a lining, I made three! These are all going to be gifts and I think they’ll be well-received.


As you can see, I played around with the sizing.


I used Nani Iro Water Window in canvas for this one with a softer fusible interfacing meant for quilting, I think. It ended up a little squishy, and for some reason looks longer than Ute’s version even though I used 15″ x 10″ rectangular pieces. A word on adding the handle: I cut a 8-inch piece of webbing and measured 3/4″ from the center of the zip on each side for placement. The handle felt a little too long proportionally for me, so I shortened the next version to 7 inches.


I used most of the last bit of my very favorite Nani Iro cotton for a more petite version. I used this lovely textile for the baby pinafore pattern that I sell in my etsy shop here. I can’t remember exactly how big my fabric pieces were since I was squeezing as much as I could out of the little bit I had available. It was about 10 x 11, I think, so almost a perfect square. It’s adorable!! This is the version with the 7-inch handle. I also used decor weight interfacing for this one, so it has pretty good structure.


For this last version that will be a birthday gift for a friend, I switched up the handle style and simply attached the handle from the outside, as you would a belt loop on jeans. Alright, I admit it, it’s because I forgot to attach the handle beforehand…

This one is slightly smaller than the first one I made (13″ x 10″) and has decor weight interfacing as well. For some reason, K liked this navy graphic fabric a lot and I had some extra, so I made her a dopp kit too, so I guess I sewed 4 in total! I just happened to have the handle strap already sewn because I was going to make a camera strap (also from my book) out of it, but I never got around to it.

All three are lined with dark grey water-repellant fabric used for rain gear, which will make wiping up a breeze. Yay!

I love love love the fabric that Ute used and need to get my hands on it somehow. Anyway, that’s it for the dopp kit tutorial!! Thanks again, Ute!

P.S. Many of you should have received a Secret Valentine Exchange gift by now, but again, please be patient if you’re still waiting for yours. Happy, Happy Valentine’s Day!! I’ll do a full wrap-up next week!





DIY Stocking


Good morning! True to my word, I did a lot of relaxing this weekend and tried to get most of the holiday errands out of the way. I have a little bit of wrapping left to do and I’m feeling pretty good about this season. I hope you had a lovely weekend as well!

So I sewed a bunch of little stockings as gifts last year and meant to post about it and plumb forgot, so here I am a whole twelve months later with a simple tutorial. These are quick and fun to make. At some point, I’d love to make a wool and faux fur version…the floral print, by the way, is Cloud 9 Grey Abbey in Pearl. I’m not sure about the gold polka dots, but both fabrics were from here.

Here’s a loosey-goosey overview of what I did — I even added some watercolor illos!


1. Create a template for the stocking shape out of cardboard or paper. Mine was approximately 12 inches high and about 5 inches wide. Using the template, cut 2 pieces each of the outer fabric and lining fabric (the lining fabric will be folded over and will show). Also cut one piece of ribbon. Mine was about 7 inches.


2. Determine where you want to fold the top of the stocking. Fold the ribbon in half, and sandwich the folded side of the ribbon between the outer fabrics (right sides together). Just in case it’s not obvious, the grey/grey stripes indicate the wrong side. Leaving the top open, sew along the edge of the outer stocking with a 3/8-inch seam allowance. Repeat with the lining fabric, but instead of sandwiching a piece of ribbon, leave about a 3-inch opening on one side of the lining.


3. Clip curved parts of the outer and lining stockings. Turn the outer stocking right side out, then slip the lining with the wrong side facing out on top (the two stocking pieces will be right sides together). Line up the side seams, and sew all around the top with a 3/8-inch seam allowance.


4. Turn the entire piece right side out, pulling from the opening in the lining. Slip stitch the opening closed, and tuck the lining inside of the outer stocking. Press, fold over the top, make sure to pull out the loop, and done! It’s ready to be filled with goodies.

Tutorial: Happy Homemade Vol 5 Pants Hack

Earlier this week, I showed you the animal print pants I modified slightly, and I’m recording the changes I made here so I won’t forget. I used pattern c for the pants, but didn’t like the front patch pockets. Switching up the pockets for the “slim pants” was super easy because I simply frankensteined the skirt pockets from pattern w of the same book. Seamless! I also slimmed down the legs by my usual hyper accurate method of eyeballing, and added an extra 1cm to the length, but for this post, I’ll focus on the pockets.


Here’s what I did (I’m showing the process for only one pant leg, but you would obviously repeat the process for the other pant leg):

1. All I needed from pattern w were the pocket facing and the pocket bag. In the image below, the top piece is the pocket bag, and the bottom piece is the pocket facing.


2. For the pocket opening, I simply traced the curve of the pocket facing onto the front pant pattern piece and cut out the corner.

pants-hack4 pants-hack5

3. With right sides facing, I sewed the facing to the corresponding front pant leg.


4. Make sure to clip the curves so the fabric will flatten nicely. I usually trim the seam allowance down to about 1/2cm but I didn’t bother in this case.


5. Flip the facing to the other side and press.


6. Topstitch along the curve of the pocket opening.


7. Align pocket bag so that the right side of the pocket bag is facing the wrong side of the front pant leg. You want to make sure the pocket bag matches up with the pocket facing. Pin and baste in place at the top of the pant leg (where the waistband will be attached) and the at the side of the pant leg.


8. Sew the pocket bag to the pocket facing, following the curve (indicated by the aqua line below). Zig zag stitch or overlock raw edges together.


And that’s it! Easy peasy. I followed the instructions from the book to construct the rest of the pants and now K can enjoy her rockstar pants for at least a year!

rockstar-pants3 rockstar-pants2


Front Placket Dress Tutorial


Well, here it is (this one’s for you, Lucinda): the tutorial I meant to post on Monday from this awesome, awesome book that has rapidly become my favorite. This tutorial is very long and is purely a reference post, but it could also be an interesting way to see the Japanese text translated. I just hope it’s helpful in some way.

I approached this in a way that seemed most practical to me, but let me know if you have recommendations and suggestions for improvements. I want to do more of these since I get so many questions about whether certain books are available in English, and though translating entire books wouldn’t be feasible (nor legal, I imagine), my aim is to provide tutorials for unique designs or specifically requested items when possible. I broke up each step and directly translated the instructions, but I also did my own sewalong and will show you how I actually sewed the dress. What’s interesting is that I translated the instructions after I made the dress and I realized I missed a bunch of steps!

So let’s try this, shall we?Read More

Origami Pocket Tutorial


I can’t believe it, I’ve actually created a tutorial within one year of saying I would! Since several of you seemed interested in how I made the origami pocket for this dress, I went about trying to re-create the pocket yesterday. It required a few tries, but I think I got it.


Below, you’ll see step-by-step instructions. I didn’t serge/zig-zag the edges because they would all be hidden, but it’s probably not a bad idea to do so. One other note: in the original pocket, you can see fold lines that create a diamond shape in the middle that adds to the coolness factor (exhibit A above), but that was due to my willy nilly folding when I was first trying to figure out how to make the pocket. Turns out I couldn’t re-create those folds exactly. I think the pocket looks mighty fine without those fold lines.

Here’s the tutorial, and I hope it’s helpful!