Drawstring bags & wash cloths

Nautical motifs are a popular choice for bathrooms and yours will be ship shape and Bristol fashion with Susie John’s set of sea-themed drawstring bag and wash cloths! The motifs are appliqued – applying cut-out fabric shapes to a background – and you can choose to embellish the fabric with as much or as little stitching as you like, depending on your abilities. Anchors aweigh, Homemakers!

  • Drawstring bags & wash cloths
You’ll need
    • Linen with a woven stripe, 37cm x 56cm
    • Plain linen in coral red, bright turquoise, light turquoise and white
    • Embroidery thread in coral, grey, white and turquoise
    • Sewing thread to match bag fabric
    • Embroidery hoop
    • Crewel needle
    • Cord, 2m
    • Bondaweb
    1. Fold the woven linen in half and press; the folded edge will form the base of the bag. Draw the lines of the design on to the bag, positioning it three or four centimetres above the fold. Place Bondaweb on the wrong side and trace the main shapes (outlined in red). Make sure your shapes are mirror images of the finished design.

    2. Cut roughly around each shape, leaving a small margin. Place the Bondaweb pieces, paper side up, on the wrong side of the linen scraps, using our picture as a guide for the colours. Press with a hot iron so that the Bondaweb fixes to the fabric, then cut out each shape along the traced lines.

    3. Carefully peel the paper backing off each shape in turn, position on the bag within the guidelines, and press with a hot iron. Once all the pieces have been fixed, you can add embroidery stitches to embellish the design.

    4. When you are pleased with the design, make up the bag. To do this, fold the fabric in half with right sides together and stitch up sides with a 1cm seam, stopping 8cm below the top of the bag. Press the side seams open, then fold in and press 1cm above side seams and top stitch.

    5. To make the casing for the drawstring, turn under 1cm along the two top edges and top stitch. Fold 4cm to inside of bag and stitch through all layers, close to the fold. Top stitch 1cm from fold along top of bag, on front and back.

    6. Cut two 1m lengths of cord and thread each one through the casings, making sure that the two ends of one come out at one side and the two ends of the other at the opposite side. Bind each pair of cord ends together and neaten using scraps of fabric, or if you prefer, you can simply knot the cord ends.