How To Sew A Cosmetic Bag And Install A Zipper (Video)

Is it just me or are zippered pouches the best? I have a zillion of them, and they’re still one of my fave go-to sewing projects. They’re quick and easy to make, they look cute, and you can put stuff in them! Ever wonder the best way to sew a zipper? In this video, I’ll walk you through how to sew a zipper plus how to make a cosmetic pouch without a pattern.

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Let’s make a cosmetic bag! This is an easy, fun project that’s functional and educational. I’m also going to show you how to install a regular zipper using your Brother sewing machine.

For this project, you’ll need two pieces of fabric. One piece 13″ x 13″ (33 cm x 33 cm) and the other cut to 13″ x 10.5″ (33 cm x 27 cm). I’m using a lightweight oil cloth. Look for something with a bit of stiffness to support the bag’s shape.

You’ll also need a zipper foot attachment for your machine, a 12″ (30 cm) zipper, and a threaded sewing machine. If you’re using a fabric that frays, start by finishing your raw edges either with a serger or an overedge zigzag.

Baste the two pieces of fabric together down one long edge at 5/8″ (1.5 cm). For this project, backstitch at the start and end of your baste to make sure the ends of the fabric stay together.

I’ll finger-press the seam allowances open, but iron them flat if you have different fabric.

Stitch-rip a 1″ to 2″ opening toward one end of the baste for your zipper pull tab to poke through. Lay your zipper right side down, centring the zipper teeth over the baste seam. And pin that in place. I like to roll the zipper down a bit, then pin it in place. Roll it, pin it.

Switch to your zipper foot attachment, and from the right side of your fabric, topstitch a box around the zipper. When you get to the pull tab, lower your needle, raise your presser foot, and move the pull tab out of the way. Lower your presser foot and continue. Be careful not to sew through the zipper teeth or the top or bottom stops. You’ll have to maneuver the pull tab out of the way again on the other side.

Now remove your baste stitches, and test your zipper!

Fold the bag right sides together so your bottom edges line up. Your zipper will be on one side of the bag.

Sew the bag around the three sides without the zipper together right sides together, backstitching at either end. Make sure you leave your zipper open a little bit so you can easily open your bag once sewn. And secure the zipper tape ends in place.

To sew a square, boxed corner on your zippered pouch, line up the side and bottom seams and flatten the corner into a triangle. Do the same on the other side.

If you decide to trim the excess fabric, make sure you finish the cut, raw edge if you’re using a fabric that frays.

Now flip the bag right side out, poking out the corners.

Voila! A cute, convenient cosmetic bag. And you learned how to sew a zipper the right way!

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