Friday, 19 April 2013

A toy basket for Feli

After almost two months of having the puppy our flat has toys everywhere... so in an attempt to minimise the damage and put some order around I have made Feli a toy basket.

The idea being that he can go around the house taking toys everywhere and I can go around the house picking them up and having a place to throw them in... until he takes them out again. Here's the only picture I managed to take with some of his toys in before he demanded them back!

Notice the slippers at the bottom? Yes he won and now he has my slippers as his toy...but I am not giving up with the rest of my shoes he so much wants!

It is quite a sturdy basket, and inside the lining there is cardboard to keep it straight... but if you are thinking of not having a puppy jumping in and out of the basket, you can loose the cardboard. and make it a lovely soft basket for yarn, fabric scraps, etc.

What will you need?
  • Two 30 x 20 inches pieces of colour coordinated fabrics (this makes a big basket - reduced if a smaller basket is wanted) one of outer and one of lining fabrics.
  • A 32 x 22 inches piece of batting (I used thick polyester one to make a sturdy basket)
  • Sewing machine, thread and scissors.
How to make it?

Step 1 - Start by laying the outer fabric on top of the batting, right side facing up. Pin in place (as if basting a quilt) and quilt as desired. I used a wonky line method with my all purpose foot. Basically I made some curves in a few of the lines, but generally just let the fabric go where it wanted while quilting without much guidance from my part. 

Here's a better picture of the back:

Step 2 - Square up to 20 x 30 inches... if smaller for some reason (a little shifting may occur) just trim the lining fabric to your final measurements.

Step 3 - Fold the quilted fabric in half right sides together and sew both sides of the fabric using a 1/4 inch (or 1/2 inch if desired) seam allowance.

Step 4 - Now to make the base, fold together the seam side and base, trying to match the seam line to the folded crease. Then measure to your desired base width, I used 8 inches, so 4inches each side of the seam. Pin in place and mark the sewing line. Sew both sides. 

Note: I did not cut the triangle corners out as it will make the basket base sturdier. However I generally do cut it out when sewing other projects.

Step 5 - Fold the lining fabrics right sides together and sew it as a tube. Note that you want it in the shape of a tube as you need an opening in the bottom for turning right side out.

Step 6 - Turn the basket inside out and place the lining tube, right sides together, around the outer of the basket as per the image below:

Now line the edges, pin in place and sew all around the edge.Turn the lining inside out and into the basket.

Step 7 - Sew along the border to set the fabric and lining in place. I decided to wrap the lining around the seam and leave it as a decorative detail. I sew over the black fabric with black thread and white thread on the spool to match the lining for the inside.

Step 8 - Finally, if you so desire, add the cardboard sides. Otherwise just sew the bottom lining close. As the bag will generally be full of things, I just turned the seam inside and run a line of machine stitches along. You can hand sew it with an invisible seam to make it perfect! (I wasn't too worried).

And voilĂ  you have a multi-purpose fabric bag! Hope you enjoyed the tutorial!


  1. Love your bag tut. Mind if I share the link with my fellow fabric bucket/basket swappers?

  2. These fabric boxes are a perfect way of using odd bits left over from projects, I have sewn left over charms together and even orphan quilt blocks, nothing gets wasted here.

  3. Great tute and smashing bag. My dog, Tatty, has a toy box and on one occasion she was seen putting her toys away in it (not a word of a lie!) - wish we'd had a video camera to hand that day. Our apartment is just as you describe yours, you can't move without stepping on a toy or a half chewed antler - it reminds me so much of when my now adult kids were small!!!

  4. Adorable! I was practicing making a fabric basket last summer and I ended using the practice basket for a pet toy basket. The funniest thing is watching them all digging around in the basket to get the toys that they want :)


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