For those of you who aren’t familiar with this useful carryall, the bento bag is a Japanese-inspired accessory where you can place belongings inside, like your food shopping or a sewing project – simply tie the handles in a knot at the top and away you go! Chloe Hailwood’s design is achieved in just four steps, and you can alter the size of the square to make smaller bags to carry your lunch or gifts.
- Fabric: six fat quarters, Liberty prints and plain cotton
- 1cm seam allowance used throughout, unless otherwise stated
Cut one 50cm square from each fat quarter, then choose three squares for the lining and three for the outer. Pick up two outer squares and lay one on top of the other, right sides facing, then stitch across two sides to create an ‘L’. On each square, sew 1cm from the top and finish 1cm before the bottom.
Lay the stitched squares flat and at the correct angle for the ‘L’ shape. The square on top is the middle one. Add in the third square to the middle one, right sides together, then sew two sides of the third square to the two unstitched sides of the middle one.
Place the bag in front of you with the middle square flat and locate the two corners which are furthest away from the openings. From one corner, measure 6cm up and along each seam, then mark. Draw a line across the corner, including each mark, then stitch across the line and trim. Repeat step three on the opposite corner.
Follow the above steps with the three lining squares. Press both pieces and place together, right sides facing. Pin and sew, matching the seams and edges and leaving a 15cm gap for turning. Turn through, press and whipstitch the gap closed.