So here's the story. I was going to winter camp this last weekend and was filling my duffel with the various clothing items that one takes to winter camp (for those of you outside of the US, most Americans know what I'm talking about) and then I came across a fan towel that you spin at foot ball games. It was a random free thing that someone handed to me before our homecoming game from the bank that helps sponsor our team. It was printed with a paste that resembled thick rubbery icing. Anyways, the towel wasn't much good for drying things, so I was going to toss it... then it hit me. *insert light bulb* I can use this to make something useful! :D This was the product. I call it... the Towel Turnip Bag. (I thought it looked like a turnip :/ :p) So if you have a random hand towel laying around that you would normally chuck, use it to make a bag! I will most likely be giving this bag to a friend since the color really doesn't sit well with me but I shall make a new one that looks much more aesthetically pleasing. I'll use it to carry things around at Magic: The Gathering tournaments and FNM. :)
I believe that it is quite strong and can carry in upwards of 15 lbs without tearing. The flap on the top can be pulled back behind the body to be left open for ease of access. You can use this when traveling, going on a walk or hike, camping, when you garden for holding weeds, bulbs, seeds, tools, whatever you want. :) I can fit about 4 standard size water bottles in it.
Step 1: Supplies
- 1 Spare hand towel
- Needle and thread (I used a sewing machine)
- A marker
- Fasteners (I used two magnets, a butterfly clip, and pins while sewing)
- A strap of some kind (The cord at the bottom was what I was originally going to use but decided it would be uncomfortable)
This project took me about 4 hours from concept to finished product. Since you have the instructions right here it should take you no time at all! :)
Step 2: Mark the Flap
So for this step you will take one end of the towel and fold it in half, hot dog style on top of each other. Fasten the sides together. This is the end that will be sewn together.
Once you've fastened one end, fold it (almost like origami) so that it looks like you're making a paper airplane by folding the corners to the center. I would then bring the corners (where I have mark 1 & 2) toward the unfastened end. This will add a slightly larger body to hold objects in. I would then hold up the bag and let the flap lay over the top of the pouch to get a reference of where the flap will be. You can make the flap as short or long as you want.
After you've folded the corners where you want them mark the positions of them with a marker. Mark on top as well as underneath the folded corner and on the flap right next to the corner but not on it. (See the close up pictures to get a better reference. You can flip step 2 & 3, the order of these doesn't really matter.)
Step 3: Sew the Fastened End
In this step you will sew the fastened end together. I used a criss-cross stitch that is very sturdy and will last longer than the towel will. (I used light blue thread... sorry, it might be a little hard to see.)
This is what it should look like. (With marked corners shown)
Step 4: Sew the Corners
For this step, fold the towel like a paper airplane again and pull the top of the pouch toward the middle so that your marks line up.
For each corner you will make two stitches. One stitch will go along the hem of the towel. The length of this stitch will determine three things; how thick the connection of the strap will be, how long the stitch across the hem will be, and how much of the bag will be useable. The longer the stitch is three things will happen, you will need to make the across stitch longer so that it reaches at least to the edge of the pouch and past the top of the hem 1/4'', the strength of the connection to the strap will be stronger since you have more room to attach it, and the bag will be stronger in general since the stitch that goes across the hem will be the primary load bearing stitch, since you must make the stitch perpendicular to the hem you will use more bag space and not be able to use that space.
Step 5: Flip the Flap and Sew the Corners Again
Now flip the flap over the top of the pouch so that there is no gap between the flap and the corners.
Sew along the hem that is underneath the flap. This increases strength of the connections.
The close up photos give a clear detail.
Step 6: Find/Make the Strap
I didn't have any long straps laying around so I made them out of the hems of some pants my mother scraped. The total length of the strap is 46.5". The next pictures show how low this makes the bag on your hip. You can adjust the strap for personal size and comfort. You can even make it adjustable if you know how to do that. :)
Step 7: Sew on the Strap
I sewed the strap with a 1/2" overlap with two stitches. The strap is on the back of the bag.
Step 8: Finished!
You have now completed a Towel Turnip Bag. :) Here are some pictures of what it looks like on.
Step 9: Add Some Flair!
You can add buttons, patches, vinyl, dye it, whatever you want! :)
Step 10: Lighting
This is one of my favorite lighting techniques. The one I used last. It's just a flashlight shining through the bottom of a water bottle that is about half full and tilted.