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Sew a Simple Bucket Bag

Today’s contributor is Crystal from Stitched By Crystal. All posts written by Crystal for Make It and Love It can be found HERE.

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Hi there! Crystal here, from Stitched by Crystal! Summer vacation is officially over and we are back to the grind around here. That means school, sports, and for my daughter, dance. Her new dance classes started last week, so she needed a new dance bag. Ok, really…she has lots of bags she could have use, but what better excuse to design and sew up a new bag! I came up with this really quick and easy bucket bag, it is really roomy and perfect for all her dance gear…but would be great for lots of other things too! And I am sharing a tutorial today so you can sew your own bucket bag!


Sew a simple bucket bag

The bucket bag has a round bottom and straight sides, so it looks like a big bucket when it is opened, and the top closes with a drawstring. It is a really simple sewing project that would be great for a beginner, but fun for a more seasoned seamstress too!

Sew a simple bucket bag

The drawstring doubles as a strap and the bag can be worn three ways…slung cross body style, as a backpack with one side of the drawstring over each shoulder, or as a purse over one shoulder.

Sew a simple bucket bag

And that drawstring top is easy for little hands to open and close!

Sew a simple bucket bag

The finished bag is about 14” tall and 12” wide. It makes a great dance bag with plenty room for my daughter’s dance shoes and water bottle. But this bag could have lots of great uses! It could be an overnight bag, a storage bag for toys or games, or an everyday tote. You could even size the bag up or down a bit to perfectly fit your needs!

Sew a simple bucket bag


Want to make a bucket bag? Great! Let me show you how!

To make the bucket bag, you will need….

  • ½ yard of your main fabric
  • ½ yard of your lining fabric
  • 1 yard of medium to heavy weight interfacing
  • 2 yards of double fold bias tape (buy premade or make your own as shown HERE)
  • Basic sewing supplies

**all seam allowances are ½”**


Start by cutting your fabric. You will need an 8.5” circle cut from your main fabric, your lining fabric, and your interfacing. I used an 8.5” salad plate as a template, but you could draw one out with a compass.

Sew a simple bucket bag

You will also need rectangles that are 14” tall by 26.75” wide cut from your main fabric, your lining fabric, and your interfacing. (note** if you want to make a different size bag, the length of these rectangles should roughly equal the circumference of your circle… so think back to high school geometry for a second… that is 3.14 x the diameter of the circle you cut, I rounded up to the nearest ¼”)

And you will need a strip of your main fabric that is 3” wide by 27.75” tall (or 1” longer than the rectangle you just cut if you are making a different size bag)

Fuse your interfacing to your outer bag pieces. For a sturdier bag, you could also add interfacing to the lining pieces or add a layer of fusible fleece.

Sew a simple bucket bag

Start by sewing the open side of your bias tape closed. Then cut off a 3” piece of the bias tape from one end. Put the long piece aside.

Sew a simple bucket bag

Fold the 3” piece in half and baste it to the side of the main bag piece, about 1” – 1.5” from the bottom corner.

Sew a simple bucket bag

Fold your main and lining rectangles in half lining up the 14” sides. Sew along the edge of both, leaving a 3” gap in the middle of the lining piece.

Press the seams open.

Sew a simple bucket bag

Sew a simple bucket bag

Pin the bottom of the main bag to the bottom of the bag (remember the loop you basted is at the bottom, so double check that you are pinning to the correct end)

Sew a simple bucket bag

Sew the bag bottom to the bag. Repeat with the lining pieces. Turn the lining right side out and set both bag pieces aside.

Sew a simple bucket bag

Hem the ends of the long strip you cut by turning them ½” towards the wrong side, then another ½” towards the wrong side and sewing along the folded edge.

Fold the strip in half wrong sides together lining up the raw long edges.

Sew a simple bucket bag

Sew a simple bucket bag

Pin the strip to the right side the main bag piece, lining up the raw edges. The hemmed edges of the strip should meet at the seam of the bag. Baste the strip to the main bag.

Sew a simple bucket bag

With the main bag inside out and the lining right side out, put the lining inside the main bag.

Sew a simple bucket bag

Line up the top edge of the bag pieces and make sure the seams of the main bag and lining are lined up. Sew around the top of the bag.

Sew a simple bucket bag

Turn the bag right side out through the hole you left in the lining. Sew the hole closed either by hand or machine.

Sew a simple bucket bag

Tuck the lining inside the main bag; the drawstring casing should stick up. Press the seam at the top of the bag and then topstitch around the bag just below the seam.

Sew a simple bucket bag

Using a safety pin, feed the bias tape through the casing at the top of the bag.

Sew a simple bucket bag

With the draw string centered inside the casing, you stitch through the center front of the casing, this will keep the strings nice and even as you open and close the bag.

Sew a simple bucket bag

Tie the drawstring to the loop at the bottom of the bag. You can do this by feeding one end through the loop and tying the to strings, or feed both through the loop and add a decorative bead. Tie the strings at your desired length and then trim of any extra string.

Sew a simple bucket bag

Your bucket bag is done!

Sew a simple bucket bag


Thanks for reading and happy sewing!



Check out Crystal’s blog here. Her darling shop here. Follow her on Instagram here. And her Pinterest page here.

***ALL contributor posts by Crystal, can be found HERE.


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We love sharing cute patterns for bags that you can make all your own!

Check out these other great bag tutorials:

Zippered Tote Bag Tutorial

Farmers’ Market Bag (From an Ikea Rug)

The Reversible Bag…for kids!


Thanks for checking out my Sew a Simple Bucket Bag post. Check out my full collection of DIY Sewing articles. Find even more sewing projects, patterns, and tips for beginners and advanced sewists by Liz Call, Mariah Leeson, Randi Dukes and Tauni Everett.


  1. Joanna says:

    So cute! I am planning on making one for a little girl who is very into trucks. However, I have never used interfacing before; do you have a specific brand you can recommend or a link?

  2. Suzanne says:

    I made my bucket bag. It took 2 days of my life. I really struggled. It was me, not the instructions. I am not that experienced with sewing. I am a knitter and a spinner. I am pleased! Surely, the next bag will be easier. Thank you for making this Well written, clear pattern available, Many thanks, Crystal!

  3. Connie says:

    Susi, the instructions say “ all seams 1/2”.

  4. Susi says:

    Hi, what seam allowance did you use for the simple bucket bag?
    Kind regards,

  5. cysec says:

    very nice and cute fabrics . thanks for sharing

  6. Diane says:

    Thanks for the super easy bag tutorial. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles for all of my grandsons TMNT action figures. It cane out really cute.

  7. Lori says:

    This is a super adorable bag, and a very easy to follow pattern! Thank you so much. I already made two of these this afternoon. I think my favorite so far is a Canvas outer/linen inner that my daughter picked out. I didn’t even use interfacing because the Canvas was firm enough. I love it and can’t wait to make more!

  8. Sharon Worley says:

    Love this! I am in the middle of sewing one but my bottom circle doesn’t seem to fit when I try to pin the two pieces together. Everything measures to the pattern directions. What am I doing wrong?

    1. Crystal says:

      I find it is easier if you mark the front, back and sides of both the bottom and the bag. Match those point first and pin, then fill in the rest of the pins. If you still have trouble, run a gather stitch around the edge of the one that seems bigger, gather it just enough to make it fit. Hope that helps!

    2. Sharon Worley says:

      Thanks for such a quick response. I must have been overthinking it! My bag turned out great. This is a beautifully written tutorial and the end result is adorable. Thanks so much for sharing it!

  9. Stacia says:

    So cute! I love that fabric, too! Where did you get it? :)

    1. Crystal says:

      Thanks, Stacia!

      The fabric is from Hobby Lobby!

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