Lined Drawstring Bag and Organizer Wallet
Sewing Project

Lined Drawstring Bags and Organizer Wallets

One of the delightful parts of my traveling this summer has been the ability to sew what I want, when I want (no deadlines!), and where I want (north of the arctic circle? No problem!). Before starting our planned 2-week drive up and down the Dalton Highway in Alaska, I found a few tutorials that were new to me that I wanted to try: the Lined Drawstring Bag Tutorial by In Color Order and the Organizer Wallet Tutorial by LBG Studio (because every bag needs something to go inside it, right?!?).

Lined Drawstring Bag and Organizer Wallet – photographed by the headwaters of the Atigun River, Alaska

Lined Drawstring Bag and Organizer Wallet – photographed by the headwaters of the Atigun River, Alaska

While my selection of fun prints on this trip is a bit more limited than usual, it wasn’t hard at all to find something to work with to make test versions of both tutorials to keep for myself. I did have to stop in Wasilla, Alaska, to pick up interfacing, elastic, and parachute cord for the projects. The parachute cord is glow in the dark, which I think is a silly, fun detail.

Lined Drawstring Bag and Organizer Wallet

Lined Drawstring Bag and Organizer Wallet

I also purchased a 3” x 5” memo pad that the organizer wallet was designed for and added a marker to round things out. The card spots are great locations to tuck business cards, and I have my postcard stamps inside the wallet so that I can be ready to quickly jot a note to send back to my young nieces.

Lined Drawstring Bag

Lined Drawstring Bag

The lined drawstring bag comes together really quickly, and I could fit a cone of Aurifil thread and the organizer wallet inside with room to spare!

Lined Drawstring Bag – Brooks Range

Lined Drawstring Bag – Brooks Range

You are going to have to take my word for it, but I made 5 other lined drawstring bags. In my excitement to have them finished, I shipped them off to friends when we reached Prudhoe Bay, Alaska, at the end of the Dalton Highway at the Arctic Ocean before I realized that I had failed to take any photographs. Oops!

Organizer Wallets

Organizer Wallets

Fortunately, I have photographs of all the organizer wallets that I made to tuck inside each drawstring bag. Each wallet was customized to match favorite colors of the intended recipients to the best of my ability.

Organizer Wallets

Organizer Wallets

I did struggle to get the interfacing to adhere to my test wallet and about a quarter of the outer interfacing is folded back as a result. I modified my ironing approach by heating up my stock pan on our stove and using it much like an old cast iron. It worked much better and the 5 other wallets turned out much crisper and better as a result.

Organizer Wallets

Organizer Wallets

I am definitely ready to conquer sewing some zippers soon. A pillow backing or perhaps a simple zipped pouch would be a good place to start. Do you have any suggestions for easy first zipper patterns? What have you been sewing this summer?

22 thoughts on “Lined Drawstring Bags and Organizer Wallets

  1. Cheryl Simokat says:

    Check out
    Joan has great tips and tricks for zippers

  2. Susanbk says:

    Another great place to look for help with zippers is Jean Impey’s decorator-zipper-on-a-pillow tutorial:

  3. Wonderful to travel and sew with no pressure or deadlines to meet. The wallet and bag are a great combination.

  4. Liz says:

    Hopefully you are enjoying the slow pace and the traveling, as for me I’m just taking time and slowly quilting. I know it’s hot but I’m in the cellar! We did some cleaning, redecorating and redesigning of our space down here but I’m back to sewing now. The little drawstring bag is cute so is the little wallet, I made a similar designed bag (I believe it’s a little smaller for my beaded necklace a friend made me but have never made little wallets. Again hopefully you are enjoying traveling and your sewing what you want when you want.

  5. Gwenne says:

    I love these little wallets. Cant wait to try them out!

  6. I’m glad that you are enjoying your sewing, with no demands or deadlines. That pouch and those wallets are really cute! As to zippers, I’d try some zippy pouches. They are so easy, and a good way to tackle zippers. Sotak Handmade has some great tutorials, as does Missouri Star. Patterns by Annie has some freebie patterns, and the instructions are clear and well done.

  7. Roseline McIntosh says:

    Looks like you are having a great road tip, lovely bags. For an easy zippered bag check out Emmaline bags on line. The Manhattan wristlet an easy sew and practical . Lots of free bag patterns and tutorials.

  8. Beautiful gifts Yvonne! That tutorial for the drawstring bag must have been made a million times so far, it is such a great pattern. I have made it numerous times. Love the AG fabric you used for the wallets – looks familiar to me! ;-). Sounds like all is well with you and I am happy about that!!

  9. Andrea M says:

    The Wide Open pouch tutorial by Anna at Noodlehead is a great first zipper project. Have fun!

  10. alaskangma says:

    My husband & I saw your camper at Walmart as we were leaving. Really hope you are enjoying our beautiful & currently warmer than usual state.
    I love glow in the dark fabric, but now I’m very intrigued by the glow in the dark parachute cord. Can you tell me where in Wasilla you found it?

  11. kittywilkin says:

    These all look like such bright and wonderful wallets (and I’m sure the pouches were, too!). I love hearing about your innovation with ironing. I wish I could see you hefting a stock pan and using it to press your wallets! So clever! As for zippers, I love Noodelhead’s Wide Open Zippered pouch. As with all of Anna’s patterns, it’s so clearly written and perfect for not so comfortable zipper-installers (that would be me, too!). Glad to hear you’re enjoying your expedition!

  12. Janet Sabol says:

    Check out how Terry Atkinson sews zippers into her projects. She’s got some really good tutorials & great instructions. @Atkinsondesigns

  13. Suzanne says:

    The bags and wallets are VERY pretty – you have a great eye for color combos.

    Zippers aren’t that hard to do. Try making a simple décor pillow cover with zipper in the middle of the back. It’s just two rectangles connected with the zipper. It’s flat and smallish so it’s easy to work with. And surprisingly, the instructions inside the zipper package are quite good for an ordinary centered zipper. That’s how I learned a gazillion years ago.

    The little purple flowers are beautiful. By any chance do you know what that they are?

    I’m glad to know you’re keeping the trip relaxing and isn’t it nice not to have deadlines all of the time? Even retired, there are always a few, but nothing like when I was working. It’s heavenly!
    Be safe.

  14. She Can Sew has a lot of projects. Look for a simple zip pouch and instructions that make sense to you! I love what you did and I am sure they are going to be loved by the lucky recipients! OH, the artic circle, what a cool place to be. I am sure you are having the time of your life!

  15. What fun projects! I especially love the little bag – so practical 🙂

  16. alaskangma says:

    I don’t see my original comment so I will say Thank you for letting me know where you bought the glow in the dark parachute cord.
    We shop all the Three Bears stores frequently, the one you spoke of is in Chugiak. Will be getting it the next time I’m there.
    Also someone had asked what the flower was in your photo and that is what we call the dwarf fireweed. We also have other fireweed that can grow up to 4 foot high. Beautiful brilliant pink flowers. Sadly ours are about bloomed or cottoned out. As the Alaskan saying goes “When fireweed cotton, summer is soon forgotten “
    Thanks again & for sharing your bag & wallet photos

  17. Katie says:

    Try the “open wide zippered pouch” pattern by noodlehead! She writes great patterns and I use that pouch for everything!

  18. aquilterstable says:

    Very fun! And I agree Noodlehead’s open wide bag is a great one. Also try some of the simple ones from s.o.t.a.k. handmade.

  19. Lisa J. says:

    I took a book out of the library last week Yvonne.called 50 little gifts and it has the pattern for the organizer wallet in it so it was interesting to see you make it as I was thinking I might make one as an exchange gift.

  20. Kate says:

    Very fun and colorful wallets. Love your backdrop scenery too!

  21. helen says:

    I see you have lots of suggestions for Noodlehead. Another one is Sotak, she has good project bags too. Your impromptu heavy iron made me smile.

  22. Oh how fun those are!!! Glad you are still enjoying your travels!!

I really appreciate the time and thought you take to comment, and I look forward to conversing with you. :)