Machine embroidery using rayon thread makes for a very pretty make up case

Yesterday on QUILTsocial I showed you how to make a journal cover with thread painting using WonderFil  Rayon threads. All week I’ve been playing with these threads to do thread painting and machine embroidery. Today I’m sharing a tutorial for an easy zippered cosmetic bag.

There are times when we hunt for a little gift to give to a friend, so it’s always nice to find a quick and easy pattern to make yourself. These great little bags can be made any size and with any fabric to meet your needs. Make some ahead of time and you’ll be ready for any special occasion!

I used the samples that I machine embroidered with WonderFil’s rayon threads earlier in the week to sew these lovely bags.

WonderFil rayon embroidery threads

Here are the supplies needed to make one bag:


  • Two fat quarters of coordinating fabrics
  • Zipper to match – 9″ (23cm) or longer
  • Thread to match
  • Low loft batting – I always save my batting scraps for projects just like this

Prepare the pattern

These bags can be made in any size for a wide variety of uses. I like this size the best because it will fit inside most purses and can still hold a lot of bits and pieces. Use the diagram below to draw out your own pattern.

Zipper bag pattern

Using your pattern cut one front and one back from each of the following: main fabric for the bag, lining and batting. I like to use a bit of spray basting to hold the main fabric and the batting together. I can then treat the main fabric and batting as one piece.

Cut pattern pieces

Sewing the zipper

Sandwich the zipper tape between the top edges of the bag/batting and the lining fabrics of the front of the bag. Pin in place. Make sure the right side of the zipper faces the main fabric of the bag. Sew through all layers. A zipper foot really helps to get close to the zipper.

Sandwich the zipper tape between the bag layers.

Fold the zipper tape towards the lining fabric and stitch a narrow zigzag or straight stitch along the fold line. This is called “understitching” and keeps the lining from getting caught in the zipper.

Understitch lining to zipper tape

Repeat these steps with the pieces of the back of the bag.

Pull the zipper tab to the middle of the bag. Use a short zigzag stitch to secure the side of one end of the zipper tape together. Repeat with the other end of the zipper and trim even with the bag sides.

Stitch across the end of the zipper

Sewing the side and bottom seams

Fold the bag with right sides facing and the bottom edges matching. One side (the back) will be longer than the other. Sew the bottom edges of front and back main bag together. I used the width of my sewing foot. Line up the bottom edges of the lining with right sides together and sew them together leaving an opening along the bottom edge of the lining fabric.

Sew across the bottom edges of the bag and the lining.

The top of the bag layers will naturally fold along one edge of the zipper when all of the bag layers are smoothed together. Stitch across the side of the bag through all layers from one edge of the zipper tape to the other.

Stitch across zipper

Sew the side seams of the outer bag and the lining separately, stopping at the end of the previous stitching.

Sew the side seams

Clip the corners then turn the bag right side out through the opening in the lining and press. Sew the opening in the lining closed with hand stitches or a straight stitch on your machine.

Clip the corners

Enjoy your little zippered bags or share them with your friends.

Little zipper bags

Thanks for joining me this week on QUILTsocial! I’ve really enjoyed experimenting with the rayon threads from WonderFil and hope that you’ve enjoyed the little projects that I’ve shared with you. Have fun stitching!

This is part 5 of 5 in this series.
Go back to part 4: How thread painting with rayon threads enhances an image on fabric

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