Introduction: Lazy Wizard's Drawstring Pouch

About: Software consultant by day, artist by whenever I get time. I mostly do papercraft, costumes, and sculptural pieces. I'm interested in working some electronics into my art to make it more interactive.

Who doesn't like a drawstring pouch for finishing off a fantasy costume like a low level wizard or bard? Something in which you can store your spell components or rations? Don't have great sewing skills? You don't need 'em. I'll do another Instructable with a pouch for a higher level character later. :)

This un-lined pouch is easy to sew, and is quick and forgiving for sewing newbies (or just lazy sewers). It doesn't require a fancy machine or stitches - just straight stitch and zigzag.


  • Sewing Machine (technically could be hand-sewn, but this Instructable is about being lazy)
  • Material (fabric or otherwise) for the base and sides (can be the same material, but I thought a reinforced fabric (suede) for the base would be nice). Should be pressed, especially if it's a tighter woven fabric.
  • A circular plate/bowl the size of the base (a compass would work too)
  • Pencil/pen/fabric marker/chalk - something to draw a circle on the base
  • Measuring Tape
  • Scissors
  • Pins
  • Thread as close to the fabric color as reasonable
  • Drawstring (cord, braid, shoelace, yarn). Not too thick for the size of the bag.
  • Safety pin
  • Seam Ripper or knife

Step 1: Draw a Circle

Take your plate or bowl (or compass) and draw a circle on the base material.

Step 2: Cut the Circle

Cut the circle. Doesn't have to be perfect, but avoid jagged cuts.

Step 3: Measure the Circle

Measure the circumference of the circle.

Step 4: Cut the Sides

Cut a rectangle of fabric that is an inch longer than the circumference, and about an inch wider than the height you want for the final bag. It should be at least as tall as the circle's diameter. I happened to have a scrap that was already the height I wanted (I don't know how that happened).

Step 5: Fold Edges and Press

Fold all the edges about 1/4 inch and press. I really recommend pressing. In my photos I neglected to do all 4 sides. It just made finishing more work.

Step 6: Pin the Circle

Pin all the way around, right-sides together, long edge to circle's edge (I pinned along selvage, but that isn't necessary). Pin close together so you get a nice curve. Overlap the edges of the sides.

Step 7: Sew the Circle

Sew all the way around using a straight stitch, give about a 1/4" seam allowance.

Step 8: Pin Sides Together

Pin the side pieces together as straight as you can where they met around the circle.

Step 9: Sew Sides

Slide the "bag" so the base is at the presser foot (some scrunching may be required), and sew all the way up the sides using a zigzag or the "dotted zigzag" if you prefer. I sewed up the side twice with a zigzag (inside and outside edge folds), and then a third time with a tiny zigzag since I missed the edge entirely on the 2nd pass.

This photo already has the button hole from the next step.

Step 10: Button Hole

If you are really lazy, and if you have a strong material, you don't have to sew the hole - you can just cut a hole, but the button hole stitching reinforces it for repeated use.

Turn the bag right-side out, and fold down the edges far enough to accommodate the thickness of your cord. Mark a vertical line (on the inside of the bag or outside, wherever you want the cord to come out - mine is on the inside). The line should be long enough, when cut, to feed in your cord with a little extra wiggle room.


Use a buttonhole stitch or just a really tight zigzag, up and down two sides of the line. Then a wide zig-zag across the ends (makes a rectangle when all 4 sides are done - see photo from previous step). If you're not happy with the stitching, just go over them again and again until you're happy. Use a seam ripper or knife to cut out the line in the middle. Be careful not to cut into your thread.

Step 11: Fold and Pin Edge

Fold the edges back down to the inside of the bag and pin.

Step 12: Stitch Top Seam

Sew the fold with a medium zigzag - make sure you go a little over the fold or at least very close to the fold. You could instead use a straight stitch very close to the fold, but you have to be more careful.

Step 13: Feed the Cord

Attach the cord to a safety pin and feed the safety pin through the hole, and all the way around. Then remove the safety pin.

Step 14: Fill Your Drawstring Pouch

You're done! Fill your pouch with rations or your copper pieces, and head out on your quest for glory! Come find me when you reach the next level. I might have a fancier pouch by then.