Decorative Topstitch Zipper Pouch

This is not your regular zippered pouch tutorial. This is completely different. Dare I say – game changing. The zippers on these little zippered bags are not stitched in. They are stitched on. With decorative stitches. Finally, an opportunity to use the decorative stitches on your sewing machine, AND a way to dress up the traditional zippered pouch! These are a fun little gift to make for someone else or to keep yourself!

I was able to make each of these zippered bags in about 20 minutes. If you don’t have experience working with zippers or making pouches, it might take you a little longer.

1 Fat Quarter Fabric
1 9″ Zipper
Sewing Machine threaded with contrasting thread
A Couple inches of ribbon (optional)

Start by cutting your fabric to size. With a 9″ zipper, I can go smaller than 9″ wide, but not bigger. I cut my pieces 8.5″ wide.
Cut the fabric TWICE the height (plus seam allowances) that you want the finished bag. I made one large bag (the one with the zoo animals) and one small one (the one with the submarines and octopi).

Once the fabric is cut, fold and press (wrong sides together) with the two 8.5″ sides touching.

Pin the folded edge of one piece to the BACK of the zipper, lining the edge about 1/8″ from the middle of the zipper.

Flip the fabric over and re-pin into place to make it easier to sew. Remove the pins from the back as you put the pins in the front.

Here comes the fun part! Pick a decorative stitch. For this bag I did stitch 24, for the other bag I did stitch 60.

With the foot for specialty stitching on, I stitched the zipper in place. This was a little tricky, because the zipper keeps things uneven. Just go slow and make sure to keep everything lined up. For the stitches I picked, I couldn’t use the zipper foot because it wasn’t wide enough. For the yellow zipper, I stitched the flowers right down the middle of the zipper side, and for the purple zipper, I lined the foot up right next to the teeth of the zipper so that the stitching would be on the edge of the zipper.

Once you’re done with one side, repeat the steps for the other side.

IMPORTANT: Before you proceed to the next step, open up the zipper halfway. This will make it MUCH easier to turn. If you forget to open the zipper, chances are this project will take you much longer than 30 minutes.

Now put the right sides of the fabrics together, with the (half open) zipper in the middle. Stitch all the way around, skipping the parts where you would stitch over the zipper, leaving a hole in the bottom for turning.

Then, go back and add some extra stitching right by the edge of the fabric, stitching the zipper ends in place. In this picture I’ve already trimmed off the excess ends of zipper, and clipped the corners (though you can’t see the corners here).

Flip the whole thing right side out, and stitch the bottom hole closed. If you want, thread some ribbon through the zipper pull.

Now you’ll want to make tons of these, trying out all the fun decorative stitches on your machine! Good thing they are so quick to make… and so useful! Plus, they make awesome gifts (or places to tuck gifts).

Check out all the other fun projects that are part of my Christmas in July – Quick Handmade Holiday Gifts week!

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  1. very cute purse.. Lovely …thank you for sharing ..

  2. beautiful purse craft . thanks for sharing


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