Monday, June 1, 2009

Towel Bag

Over the weekend I sewed these cute towel bags for my boys. I got my inspiration from this clever gal's blog, The Idea Room .

Swim season is upon us! Which means soaking wet towels and chlorine drenched swim trunks will soon be decorating my laundry room floor.

Growing up, all of the kids would roll their undies, toiletries, and suits in a towel. This was risky. It was risky because there was always the chance of an "undie escape". It was common to find a pair or two of frilly panties and tighty-whities laying on the floor of our local swimming pool. If no one was looking during an "undie escape", you could quickly swipe and tuck your undies back into the folds of your towel. But if there were witnesses...well, you just walked away. And then some obnoxious boy would usually yell, "Ewwwwwww! Someone dropped their panties! And there's streaks! Ewwwwwww!" All of the kids would "Ewwwww!" in unison and laugh. The victim would then usually pipe up and claim, "Sheesh! I wonder who's panties these belong to? What a dork!"

I'm still scarred about that experience.

I purchased these cute towels from Wal-mart for only $3 dollars and something cents! You can easily make two bags from one towel, if you'd like.

You can make the bags any size you want. Mine are 17 inches wide and 19 inches long. I only have 2 seams in my towel bags. I folded the towel in half, by doubling the width measurement.

Step 1. Lay the towel on a flat surface and cut the width at 35 inches. (Once folded and sewn, the width of the bag will measure around 17 inches)

Step 2. Measure the height of your towel at 21 inches and cut off the excess towel material from the top.

Step 3. Sew on or iron on some trim on the right side (or outside), 4 inches from the top of towel. (I found this cute trim that you iron on. I also zig zagged it with my sewing machine)

Step 4. To make the casing for the drawstring, fold down the top of the towel about 1 1/2 inches. Pin in place.

Step 5. Sew the casing, using your presser foot as a guide.

I accidentally switched steps 6 and 7. So imagine the step 7 image being at the top!
Step 6. With right sides together, fold the towel in half and pin the bottom and side openings.
Step 7. Sew the bottom and side seams, being sure to NOT sew through the casing. I also zig zagged the seams to prevent fraying.
Step 8. Turn the bag right side out and pull the drawstring through the casing. I like to use a large safety pin to do this. Once you have pulled the drawstring through the entire casing, cut the ends to your desired length. (I cut mine to around 8 inches) Then insert the ends through a cord stop (these can be purchased at JoAnns and Hancocks).
The ends of the drawstring can be tied together in a knot or you can fold over the ends and sew them to prevent the drawstring from unraveling.
All done! Enjoy your towel bags and have a wonderful summer!


  1. You are SO Darn Crafty!! CUTE bags, and I too, remember the horrible towel roll at the swim pool. What a much better way to carry around the essentials!

  2. I love those! And I think I might actually beable to make that! So cute!

  3. WAY CUTE JEN!!! I can't wait to make one or two for my kiddos! I remember to towel roll thing all too well!

  4. Jen, you are so clever! And that is something even I could sew! I too remember the towel roll and your idea is so much smarter! Thanks for sharing(:

  5. Very cute bags. I might have to try making some!

  6. LOVE this. Love it! Especially since we just started swim lessons today at our local Rec Center. As I went upstairs to watch from the bleachers with the other parents, I TOTALLY thought of you and remembered your post from...(I don't know when, long ago), when you talked about the characters you would sit with up there. The perfectly pressed young Mommy and her gorgeous hair, and the sleepy Mom who took off her shoes and napped during the 20 minute class. No sights like that for me today, but a 7 year old girl did get her head stuck in the railing...don't worry, it ended well.

    PS - How about my comments are always so long??

  7. Jewels!

    I love long comments! I enjoy reading about your experiences. They warm the chambers of my heart!

    So when the little girl had her head stuck in the railing, did you think to yourself, "I wish I had my camera?"
    You probably didn't because you are such a sweet gal.

  8. Seriously? You're too much. Just reading the instructions made me feel a little woozy and tired. Now you know why I can't sew on a button.

    I'll just keep you around and have you make stuff for me. It's much easier that way.

  9. Awesome! These are so cute! And I especially loved getting a peek at your fabulous red nail polish during your demos ;-)


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