Sew Alongs

The Hedgerow Book Bag Sew Along Day 5: Finishing Touches

Just a few more steps to finish up our Hedgerow Book Bags!

Place the outer bag body inside the lining body so that right sides are together.

Line up the top raw edges of the top facings (C) and the outer body pieces (A), making sure that the side seams are matching up nicely. The webbing strap will be sandwiched between the two layers. Pin or clip to secure. Stitch around the top of the bag. Reinforce the stitching at the strap tab with an extra row of stitches.

Now for the best part: flip that bag!! Reach through the 8” gap that at the bottom of lining body (E) and carefully pull the entire bag through the opening.

Gently stuff the lining body into the outer body and use your fingers or a point turner to poke out the corners. If your fabric can be pressed, press the top seam. Otherwise, crease it well by hand by rolling it with your fingers. Here is a video that demonstrates how to roll waxed canvas to get a nice crisp seam:

Stitch the bottom lining gap closed by hand or sew by machine. Here is a video demonstrating my favorite way to handstitch a bag closed: 

Topstitch around the top of the bag 1/8” from the top seam. A couple of tips to get great topstitching here:

1) Make sure your top seam is crisply pressed or rolled

2) I find it easiest to sew with the facing side up when sewing a bag with snap closure. This is helpful in getting around the snap.

3) Start sewing at the side seam with your stitch length slightly reduced. Hold on to your bobbin thread as you start sewing to make sure you don't get any unsightly loops on the right side of the bag. Take a few small stitches, then switch to a regular stitch length.

4) Take your time sewing around the bag, especially near the straps and side seam. When you get to your starting place, reduce the stitch length again and overlap your starting stitches for 3 or 4 stitches. This will look neater than backstitching.

That's all there is to it! You now have a beautiful, sturdy book bag to take with you wherever you go. 

We would love to see your finished Hedgerows!! Email us your photos, or post your pictures on Instagram and mention @redrabbitmercantile so we can see your picture! You can also post your pictures on our Facebook page. Thanks for joining the Sew Along!