Drawstring Bag Tutorial

Welcome to my first tutorial! I am going to show you how to make these super cute drawstring bags with an exterior pocket. You can embroider them, appliqué them, or just leave them blank! So many options and so many ways to be creative.

Please though, this is my first tutorial so I hope I explain everything in a way you all can understand it. I am a very visual person So there will be pictures! And probably too many of them 😀

what you need

Outer Panel (2) – 13.5×15.5

Inner Panel (2) – 13.5×15.5

Pocket (1) – 15×17 this will be folded in half to equal 15×8.5

Cord Tabs (2) – 4×2

Cording (1) – 3.5 yards this will be cut in half

Making the tabs

Take the tabs and fold in half. Press. Open them back up and bring each side up to the middle crease that you just created.

Then Fold in half so the raw edges are hidden. Now you will sew down each side on your machine. I sew on the creased side first, then the open side.

And done with the tabs! They should look like this. Please note that my picture they are 6 inches long, and then realized I accidentally made them too big. So I did cut them down to 4 inches.

attaching the pocket

After you embroider or appliqué or whatever you want to do to you pocket you can then attach the pocket to the front panel. I sometimes cut my pocket bigger so I have extra fabric and can center my name/appliqué.

Fold pocket in half length wise. Your pocket will then be 15×8.5 and lined.

Lay one front panel with right side facing up. Then place pocket on top, lining up the bottom edges.

Place second outer panel on top, right side facing down. You will then pin bottom edges together and sew. You can pin pocket into place as well.

Repeat with the inner panels, there will just be no pocket.

Attaching outer and inner panels

Open the inner and outer panels and press open. Lay the outer panels down right side facing up. Then lay inner panels on top right sides facing down. Pin center seams together. Next pin each end and so along each end (The shorter ends).

After sewing the panels together you will have something that looks like a giant circle or donut.

Next, keeping right sides together match up the outer panels and inner panels.

inserting tabs

Take one tab and fold it in half. Measuring one and a half inches from the bottom seams on the top panels, insert tab.

Pin into place.

sewing together

At the center seam, measure one inch from the center seam on the top panel. Pin or mark the measurement. This will be the forming of the casing for the cording to feed through.

Repeat on other side.

On one side of the inner panel, leave an opening to turn your bag around. roughly 4-6 inches, whatever you feel you need to turn the bag right side out.

Sew down each side, starting and stopping at the casing mark and seam, and the opening to turn bag right side out.

Turn bag right side out, press, and top stitch the opening shut. Push lining into the bag. Press again.

Creating the casing

Now you will sew all around the top of the bag, below the opening that was created from leaving a gap one inch away from the center seam.

threading the cording

Take your cording and cut it in half. DO NOT forget to tape off each ends to prevent fraying while you work! after you tape off each end, insert a safety pin to help you thread the cording through.

Thread through on one side.

After it is thread through, take one end through the tab, and tie. Remove tape.

Repeat on other side and then your done!



I hope this tutorial was easy to follow! I would love to hear feedback and see what you made with this pattern!

Sew On,



    • Thanks so much for the feedback! I was curious to see if what I wanted to say actually came out in a clear and understanding way.

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