Quick and easy fabric bins
Updated: Jul 31, 2021
I love this scrap buster project! It is super easy and can be made quickly on most sergers!
Feel free to use a sewing machine; however, the finishing step is specific for sergers only. The ones I serged up I made with our 100% Linen material in the colour PFGD (Prepared for Garment dye) for the outer fabric, and Hemp/ Organic cotton blend in Natural Stripe for the lining. I love the neutral modern farmhouse vibes I get with this combination.
These are also WASHABLE! I have a bit of a clumsy household with pets, so sometimes accidents happen. However, being made with natural material, they can be washed and treated for stains then air-dried. You can even iron them at a medium-low temp.
You can really make them in any size as all you really need is 2 rectangles of material and a supporting batting layer in between to help hold its shape. If you want bigger or smaller bins, change the size of the rectangle! Something like this is a great way to organize those odd-sized closets and cupboards.
1 - Outer fabric piece measuring at 48cm X 30cm (18.89" X 11.81" for those who prefer inches)
1 - Lining fabric piece measuring at 48cm X 30cm (18.89" X 11.81" for those who prefer inches)
1 - Fusible Fleece or batting measuring at 48cm X 30cm (18.89" X 11.81" for those who prefer inches)
2 - Spools of all-purpose thread to use on your serger for the 3 thread serger seam
1 - Spool of stretch nylon thread for the 2 thread serger seam used for the top hem
A serger with the ability to do a 3 thread serger seam and a 2 thread serger seam. If you are unsure of the ability of your serger, I suggest referring to your manual. The machine used in this tutorial is the new Bernina L850 air threading serger.
Fuse the fusible fleece to the wrong side of the outer fabric. If you are using batting or another stabilizer for the fabric bin, I suggest basting it in place using spray glue or using a long stitch on your sewing machine. If you want to get real fancy, you could even quilt it or add in embroidered labels at this step! However, I am going for a simple quick-to-make bin, so I will not be doing that.
Take your lining and the prepped outer fabric and fold them in half right sides together, matching the short raw edges. The folded side will be the bottom of your bag, and the short raw edges will be the top.
Set up your serger for a standard 3 thread serge with all-purpose polyester thread in the left needle and upper looper and the stretch nylon thread in the lower looper. This will save you some threading time later on—Serge the sides of both your folded lining piece as well as your folded outer piece.
Time to box the corners. This step can be hard to describe to any visual learner. There are a few different ways of creating a boxed corner as well, so you can choose the method you prefer. It is pretty easy for me to make a triangle at the bottom corner of my bag, pushing the side seam to the center of the triangle. You can see an example in image 4. I measured 2" in from the tip of the triangle and drew a line. A larger triangle will create a deeper depth on your bag. Serge along that line. You should end up with something similar to image 4.1
Once you have finished serging the side seams and boxing off the corners, you should end up with 2 bags like in image 5. Turn the outer bag right side out and the lining bag inside out. Place the lining bag inside the external bag, matching the wrong sides together like in image 5.1.
Use wonder clips or quilting clips to match together and hold the side seams and bag centers to help ensure no puckering. Next, switch your machine to a 2 thread seam using your left needle and lower looper. If you are unsure how to do this, please refer to your machine manual. On the Bernina L850, it was super easy. Since I already had the stretch nylon thread in the lower looper, all I did was unthread the upper looper and switch on the 2 thread converter. Follow all of your machine settings for this serger stitch, but put the stitch length at a rolled hem length. Most machines will have an R, but some will suggest numbers between 0.7 and 1. If you have any scrap pieces of the lining and prepared outer bag pieces, I encourage you to practice your stitch on these pieces to make sure you have the settings to your preference. Every serger is a little different. For example, on the Bernina L850, I have the needle tension set at 5 and lower looper tension at 3 with the stitch length at R.
Finish your fabric basket! You can follow along with how I finished in images 7 - 7.2. Once you are happy with your machine settings, serge the top of your fabric basket, creating the top hem. Once you come to the beginning of your stitch, stop just before your serger knife starts to cut your start of the seam and disengage your upper blade, super easy to do on the Bernina L850 with just the flick of a switch. Next, carefully continue your top hem overlapping the beginning of your seam by less than one centimeter or approximately 1 quarter of an inch. When you have overlapped your seam, lift your pressure foot, pull your needle thread forward from under the pressure foot, and cut it. Then pull your bag towards the back of your serger, releasing the lower looper thread, then cut it. Trim any threads, then fold the top hem down.
Voila! You have a fabric basket entirely made on your serger! Once you get the hang of the instructions, you can quickly whip up many of these for organizing around the home! You could also use them for homemade gift baskets, add some ribbon and a drawstring, or even an elastic casing for an easy gift bag with a closure. This is really an easy foundation for so many excellent bag and basket creations. It is also a great learning project for anyone wanting to get to know a new serger! I hope you have fun serging this easy project!
Thanks for viewing this tutorial! If you would like to make your own fabric baskets using the same material I did, click the link below to our shop! And as a thank-you, here is a coupon code for 15% off Linen and Hemp material, available for use until August 31st 2021! Just enter BA5KETCA5E at checkout!