Introduction: DIY Reversible Green/Red Battery Pouches

About: Multi-crafter, jewellery maker, card designer and frequent procrastinator.

Whenever my camera battery would run out, I'd put it in my camera bag alongside my other charged-up batteries. ...often leading to me forgetting which batteries were charged and which ones were dead.

So, I ended up making little reversible pouches for my batteries to go inside; now I have green on the outside when the battery is charged, and red on the outside when it's not. Problem solved!

To make these pouches, you will need:

- Red and green fabric: you want thin and lightweight fabric, preferably woven and unstretchy to make your life a lot easier! I used thin woven polycotton fabrics.

- A sewing machine and a thread to match one of your fabrics (I used red). Since the pouches are small, you could hand sew them instead if you preferred.

- Scissors

- Sewing pins

- Something long and thin to turn the pouches inside out; knitting needles, chopsticks...that kinda thing.

- Fabric pen/chalk to mark measurements onto the fabric pieces.

- A ruler

- Iron

Step 1: Cut & Pin

First, you should really wash and iron your fabrics. This is so that if you wash the pouches at some point in the future, they don't shrink.

Then you will need to work out how big you need your fabric pieces to be.

My batteries measure: 55 mm (l) x 35 mm (w) x 8 mm (d)

To work out the length of the fabric pieces:

Add the length of the battery (55 mm) to the depth (8 mm), then add 7 mm for the seam allowance, and then 5 mm for a bit of 'give'.

= 55 + 8 + 7 + 5 = 75 mm long

To work out the width of the fabric pieces:

Add the width of the battery (35 mm) to the depth (8 mm), then add 2 x 7 mm for the seam allowances, and finally add 10 mm.

= 35 + 8 + 14 + 10 = 67 mm wide

Once you have worked that out, cut out 2 red rectangles and 2 green rectangles this size, for each battery pouch you want to make.

1 finished pouch requires 4 pieces of fabric.

Measure and mark out the rectangle shapes with a fabric pen, then cut out with scissors (or a rotary cutter, ruler and cutting mat).

Align each pair of green rectangles (right sides together*) and pin them together, making sure that the pins are perpendicular to the edges (so it's a lot harder to accidentally sew over your pins on the sewing machine!)

Do the same for each pair of red rectangles.

*If, like me, your fabrics don't have a right (front) or wrong (back) side because both sides are the same, then you can put the fabrics any way up you like.

Step 2: Sew Around the Edges

Use a short straight stitch (1.5 mm long or thereabouts) to sew along 3 edges of the fabric pairs. Leave one short side open. Of course, make sure that you remove pins as you go and don't sew over them :)

If you are using a stretchy fabric, a small zig-zag stitch will serve you better, and you will probably need to use (ball-point) sewing needles designed for use with stretch fabrics.

Use a 1/4" (7 mm) seam allowance.

Remember to backstitch at the start and end of your sewn lines to secure the thread.

You may notice I used a slightly bigger seam allowance on the short edge but that's because I decided last-minute to make the pouches shorter - so ignore that!

Step 3: Insert the Red Pouches Into the Green Pouches

Turn all of the red pouches the right-way-out, and then push them into each of the green pouches. The 'right sides' of the pouches will be in contact with each other.

Line up the edges of the red fabric with the edges of the green fabric on the inside of the pouches, and pin in place as shown in the photos. Make sure the open tops of the pouches align with each other too.

Step 4: Stitch Around the Top

This can be a bit fiddly on the sewing machine so take it slow. You can hand-sew a running stitch instead if you're struggling.

Stitch around the top of the pouches to sew the green pouches to the red pouches.

Use a 1/4" seam allowance again.

Leave a gap at least 20 mm across in your sewn line, as shown in the photos. However, the next stage is tricky with only a 20 mm gap, so to make your life easier, I would recommend leaving a gap of more like 40 mm across (i.e. most of the width of the pouches).

Step 5: Turn Inside Out

Use a thin and long implement that is not sharp, such as the blunt end of a pencil/chopstick/knitting needle, and use it to help you turn the pouch the right-side-out.

You want to push the green and the red pouches through that gap you just left in the sewn line at the top. This can require patience!

Once you have done that, you push the red 'lining' pouch into the green pouch, as shown in the photos.

Iron the pouches to remove the creases.

Then pin around the top of the pouch once more.

Step 6: Topstitching

Now it's time for that fiddly sewing job again! Stitch straight stitches all around the top of the of the pouches, backstitching at each end, and you've completed your reversible pouches!

Be as neat as you can, since these sewing stitches are on the outside of the pouch and will therefore be visible. Also be careful about sewing over the pins, as that's really easy to do in this step.

Put your batteries inside and enjoy your new organised storage solution :)

Thanks for reading!

Step 7: Video

And I have now created a video of the steps too :)

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