D.I.Y tutorial : Make your own cosmetic bag

TITLE-BAGA seamstress I am not. However when given such a stunning bundle of Heal’s Fabrics and a challenge to create anything I want,  I quickly dusted off the sewing machine and got cracking.  For my first crafty creation using the new Heal’s 1810 fabric collection I chose this stunning Peacock  Flower Killary print by french illustrator Malika Favre.

My aim is to show that crafting can be easy and you don’t have to be too precise. When I’m given too many craft rules I get bored and down tool, the making of this cosmetic bag is really easy and the end result is really impressive.

Items that you will need :

  • Fabric (mine is a remnant of upholstery fabric which makes the bag more structured)
  • Lining fabric, ideally a thin cotton
  • Zip
  • Scissors
  • Pins
  • Sewing machine
  • Sewing machine thread
  • A ruler or tape measure
  • Music. Craft with a bounce in your shoulders, trust me it’s fun!

The size of the bag really depends on the size of the zip you have. I have a 30cm zip and that makes for a good sized cosmetic bag and also pencil case. You can make these bags all types of sizes and dimensions but the main rule is that the width of the fabric HAS to be cut to the same width as the zip. The height can be any size you want just as long as each piece is cut to the same size. Looking at my scissor skills you can see I’m not so accurate but it’s kind of there.

My patterned fabric was cut to 30cm in width to match the zip, then I just divided it into two equal pieces.

Cut the lining fabric to the same size.

Fabric piecesNow it’s time to pin the fabric. Lay one piece of your fabric face up. Lay the zip face down, on the top edge of the fabric. Then lay the lining fabric on top of the zip. Pin these three items together, keeping them all in line at the top. Sew these pieces together, it can be a bit tricky with the zip foot. You can sew half way then move the zip foot out of the way then carry on sewing.

Tip : Pin vertically, this way you can sew over the pins while keeping the fabric in place.

pinning fabricThis will now result in the zip sandwiched between those two pieces of fabric.

Now do the same with the other side of the zip. It should look a bit like this…..

sewnzipIron the fabric flat to make these next steps easier.

Fold the fabric so that the lining fabrics are both on the outside (with the main patterned fabric on the inside) and zip at the top. Pin along the bottom edge and sew all four pieces of fabric together.


Now move this seam to the middle, on top of the zip. Pin together and sew both edges, before sewing make sure the zip is open half way.

insidepinEveryone makes mistakes, it’s not the end of the world and it’s easily fixed if you are being particular.

insideoutOk we’re nearly done. Now just to square off the edges. Pinch the corners keeping the seam in the middle, measure and pin these corners equally. I pinned 4cm in from the edge. Then sew to create this triangle flap.

pinchcornersYou can either simply cut the triangle flaps off and neaten the edges, which is probably the correct way of doing it or just leave it as it is (I’ve just left it).

Now for the big reveal, turn it inside out!

final1 final3I’d love to see your creations! Please send me pics of yours and if anyone gets stuck just message me I’ll try to help.

Happy crafting!

H x


  • Reply C April 17, 2014 at 2:34 pm

    I think this is fab! Lovely choice of lining. I will give it a go with my daughter. Thanks, C

    • Reply Hannah April 17, 2014 at 2:41 pm

      Great! Enjoy Carmel! I’m sure it will be beautiful x

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    • Reply Hannah April 22, 2014 at 7:59 am

      This is a great blog post materialsoflife and a perfect result!

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  • Reply Elaine April 30, 2014 at 4:28 am

    I just made mu makeup bag, and I love it! Thank you for the tutorial:)

    • Reply Hannah May 2, 2014 at 4:58 pm

      YEY! So glad you made one and enjoyed it 🙂

  • Reply Ruth Hurley June 1, 2014 at 6:07 pm

    very nice bag—you can avoid pins by using a glue stick oe Elmers school glue to hold your zipper in place while you sew

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  • Reply Jenn December 8, 2014 at 9:10 pm

    Did you have a hard time going over the zipper when sewing the ends closed? That makes me nervous.

    • Reply Hannah December 9, 2014 at 5:48 pm

      Yeah I did! I’ve learnt now to sew closer to the ends as this case had gaps.

  • Reply zayaa March 13, 2015 at 11:04 am

    Nice creation! I will try it 🙂

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  • Reply amaranda de jong September 20, 2019 at 10:31 pm

    Brilliant tute ! thanks so much

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