How to sew a Bento bag

Make your own Japanese-style fabric bag with our free bag sewing pattern. Use this step-by-step guide by Jennie Jones to piece together to fold three fabric squares into an elegant me-made accessory!

How to sew a Bento Bag

Feeling inspired by the international-themes you’ve spied on Great British Sewing Bee? The fabrics! The peplums! The wax prints! The harem pants! If, like us, you’re in the mood for a spot of sewing with an international twist, join us in sewing up a speedy Bento bag with this free tutorial

This Japanese-style bag is one of our favourite easy sewing projects from Simply Sewing magazine, designed by Jennie Jones for our Fast Fat Quarter series. It’s easy to make by piecing together and folding three fabric squares. Here’s how to make it with our step by step guide.

You will need

  • 3 fat quarters of fabric
  • Basic sewing kit
  • Iron
How to make a Bento Bag supplies
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Step 1

Cut three pieces of fabric to form the sides and bottom of your bag. The two side pieces should measure 40x42cm (1534x1612in) and the bottom piece should measure 40x40cm (15¾x15¾in).

How to make a Bento Bag step 1

Step 2

Take one of the side pieces and turn the top edge over by 1cm (38in) twice then stitch down to hem. Repeat with the left edge. Take the other side piece and do the same along the bottom and right edges. With right sides (RS) facing, stitch the right edge of the left side piece to the left edge of the bottom piece. Repeat with the left edge of the right side piece and the right edge of the bottom piece.

How to sew a bento bag step 2

Step 3

With the wrong side (WS) facing you, fold the bottom piece along its diagonal. You will now have a V-shaped piece, with the RS facing you on one side and the WS facing you on the other.

How to sew a bento bag step 3

Step 4

Turn over the bag then fold the left side in to join the raw edge of the bottom and pin together, RS facing.

How to sew a bento bag step 4

Step 5

Turn over the bag and repeat on the other side.

How to sew a Bento Bag step 5

Step 6

You’ll now have a U-shaped piece, with WS facing you.

How to sew a bento bag step 6
How to sew a bento bag step 6

Step 7

Sew along the pinned seams, then turn the bag RS out. Topstitch where the pieces are joined at the opening of the bag to neaten.

How to sew a bento bag step 7

Step 8

Create box corners to finish the bag. Turn the bag to the WS and draw a pencil line 5cm (2in) in from each corner.

How to sew a bento bag step 8

Step 9

Sew along the line and trim the excess fabric. Turn the bag RS out and tie the sides into a bow.

How to sew a bento bag step 9
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Ta da! Your bag is finished & ready to take out to play.

Free bag sewing pattern