Sometimes it seems like I am always running out of storage bins/boxes, closet space etc. especially now with a baby. Also, not all storage boxes can be tucked away and so I decided to make pretty storage bins/baskets/boxes. Some of the ideas I came up were as simple as coloring a big diaper box with some acrylic paint and putting stickers on them. I also covered some cardboard boxes with fabric.

Then I moved towards more exciting (time consuming but prettier) option, i.e. these fabric baskets I am going to write about in this post. Here it goes,

Materials you will need:


  • Two coordinating preferably heavy duty fabric (I took a colorful one for the outside and a plain coordinating fabric for the lining)
  • Pellon 809 decor bond iron-on interfacing (If you have read the post for diy laminated placemats you will remember that I used the same interfacing for it)
  • a cardboard piece (8X10 or slightly larger) or something else sturdy to be put at the bottom. I used pexiglass I had at home leftover from some project we were doing in the house.
  • Your sewing stuff (machine, thread, scissors, rotary cutter, etc.) and iron

As usual the first step is to decide how tall and wide you want your basket to be. I have made two different sizes. The green elephant one is about 14 inches in height and 19 inches in width and the owl one is about 28 inches in height and  19 inches in width.

Lets make the owl one together in this tutorial. I started with 4 main pieces of fabric for the body, two pattern pieces and two plain green pieces for lining. Each of them measured 30X20 inches. I also cut 4 pieces of interfacing a little smaller than main pieces so like 28X18. Also, we need a small piece of lining fabric for the outside pocket of the basket(optional). I used a 12X6 inch piece. Also you will need two pieces about 8X15 of main fabric for making the handles (this is optional).

Once we have all pieces cut, iron on the interfacing to each of the main pieces (not necessary for handles and pocket) as directed. Here, I just want to let you know that it was a little difficult for me to iron the the interfacing really well on the pieces and it was not sticking very well all through the fabric. But don’t worry too much about it. Just make sure it stays put.

Take your pocket piece and fold all four corners of about 1/4 inch and iron it as shown in the picture below. Next sew one side of the pocket with a straight or decorative stitch. Now pin the other three sides (except the side which you just sew the with decorative stitch) of the pocket on the right side of one of the main fabric and sew along the edges (as shown in the picture). Your pocket is done.


Now put the right sides together and towards inside, of the two main fabric and sew along the three sides with 1/4 (to 1/2) inch seam allowance. Do the same with the lining fabric.

DSC_0590Once you have stitched the three sides, now we need to add some width to the basket. For this, with the wrong side of the stitched fabric, fold one of the bottom corner of the piece and make a triangle as shown in the picture below. Then, with a ruler draw a straight line 8 inches long from one end to the other (as shown the blue pen line). Do the same with the other end of the fabric, both for the lining as well as the outside piece of the fabric. Finally sew along these lines.


When you turn your piece inside out you will notice that now it has a bottom which will act as the base of your basket. The picture below shows how the inside of the basket looks like without the lining.


I forgot to mention the handles. But you can make them anytime before you assemble the lining and the outside of the basket. So for the handles I used the same fabric I used for outside. Just sew the two strips of fabric along the edges and you have two handles ready. I used the double sided biased tape style to sew it. You can also sew like a tube  with the wrong side of the handle fabric first and when you turn it inside out you have the handle ready.


We are almost done, only thing remaining is assembling all the pieces and sewing it. Let’s assemble :).

Take the outside piece and put the lining piece of fabric with wrong side out, inside it. Ah!! before you do that, fold and iron about half inch from the top of both inside and outside of the basket fabric pieces so that it will be easy to sew them together. Look at the picture to be more clear.


Now take the inside piece and put it in the outside piece of the  fabric basket and insert the handle pieces of the fabric in between the lining and the outside fabric. Now pin and sew along the folded edges (see how folding and ironing before hand helps now :)).


Once, you stitch along the edges all around, ta da!! you have the basket ready :). So far I have used it to keep Shlok’s toys and my yarns and they have been very useful.


Happy Sewing!!