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TIP If you wish the bag to be stronger you can cut two pieces of interfacing following the shape of the bag and stitch them to the wrong side of the bag or lining front and back
1. Start with your outer bag pieces. Place right sides together, and sew the seams at each edge
2. Then open out the piece so that the seams are at the front and back of the bag. Sew along the bottom seam.
3. Then square off the corners by pinching each one out, then sewing straight across about an inch from the corner's edge, double stitch corner seams Trim excess.
4. Repeat these steps with the lining pieces, but remember to leave a gap in the bottom seam, for turning inside-out later on.
Cut a strip measuring 5" X 1.5" to make a loop with which to fasten the bag to a button, if you choose to use this method. You could also make two ties to fasten, or use velcro or a snap fastener.
5. Make your loop for the button. Press in both edges of the strip towards the centre, then fold in half and press again. Sew the edges together (this is just like a bias strip.)
6. Now sew the lining and outer pieces together. Place one inside the other, right sides together. Match centre seams, and pin. Insert your loop between the two layers on one side of the bag, so the ends of the loop are sticking out, and pin it securely.
7. Sew about 1/4" from the edge, all along both sides of the bag, right up to the top edges.
8. Now clip around the curved edges, nearly to the seam.
9. Turn the bag right-way-out through the gap in the lining. Now press all around the edges of the bag where you have sewn, so that both layers 'sit' nicely. Trim the tops of the straps so they're even and of equal length.
10. Sew the top of the strap together- at just the outer pieces. Place right sides together, and sew a 1/4" seam. Press down. Then tuck in the lining pieces at this point and hand-stitch it closed.
11. Press the strap again and if you are happy with everything, top-stitch a 1/4" seam all around the edges of the bag. Hand-sew the gap in the lining closed. And hand-sew a big button on the front of the bag, in such a position so the loop will fit nicely around it.