"We love this project because it’s so versatile."
We love this project because it’s so versatile. Simply adjust the measurements to fit your device such as a smartphone, tablet or e-reader and the rest of the steps stay the same. Let’s get started!
You will need:
- Fabric – the amount depends on the size of your tablet
- A large button
- 12.5cm (5in) 0.5cm (¼ in) elastic
- Thread in a matching colour
- Batting or foam interfacing
Finished dimensions: 9 x 17 cm (3.5 x 6.75 in) for the cell phone and 17 x 27 cm (6.75 x 10.5 in) for the tablet
Work out the measurements for your pieces. First, measure the height and width of your device. Add 4cm (1.5in) to each measurement. Our tablet measured 15.5 x 25.5cm (6 x 10 in), so our pieces will need to be 19.5 x 29.5 cm (7.5 x 11.5 in).
Cut your fabrics using these measurements – you will need 2 pieces of outer fabric, 2 pieces of lining fabric and 2 pieces of batting or foam interfacing. You can also piece the outer layer together like we did – don’t forget to add 1cm (3/8in) seam allowance to each piece if you’re doing this, otherwise your finished sleeve will be too small. You can also topstitch along the pieced seams if you like.
If adding a label, sew it to one of the outside front corners, with the outer corner 2cm (¾in) up from the bottom (short edge) and 2cm (¾in) in from the side (long edge).
Baste the two ends of the elastic next to each other onto the centre of one of the top edges of a piece of outer fabric (if you pieced the front, make sure you use the back piece!). Make sure the elastic is not twisted and the raw edges are lined up with the raw edge of the fabric.
Create the outer part of the sleeve: Place the two pieces of outer fabric right sides together, followed by two layers of batting or foam interfacing (you may find it easier to baste the interfacing to the fabric within the seam allowance first). Pin or clip together and sew along the bottom and sides with a 1cm (3/8 in) seam allowance.
Using a walking foot can make this step easier. Don’t sew the top edge closed!
Trim the seam allowance at the corners so they sit neatly when you turn the bag the right way out, and trim the foam or batting out of the seam allowance – careful not to cut the fabric or stitches.
Create the inner part of the sleeve: First, fold 1cm (3/8 in) at the bottom of both pieces of lining fabric towards the wrong side and press.
Now pin or clip the two pieces together and sew down both sides, backstitching to secure when you reach the bottom.
Your seam allowance should start at 1cm (3/8 in) at the top and increase gradually to 1.25 cm (1/2 in) – this larger seam allowance will help the lining to sit neatly inside the sleeve. Leave the bottom open for turning.
Turn the outer part of the sleeve the right way out, making sure you separate the layers of batting or foam so that there is one each for the front and back of the sleeve.
Place the outer sleeve and the lining right sides together, matching the side seams. Pin or clip together carefully, making sure the elastic is pointing into the sleeve. Sew around the top with a 1cm (3/8 in) seam allowance – if your sewing machine has a free arm, it can make this step easier.
Turn the sleeve through the hole you left in the lining.
Pin or clip the turning hole closed and sew along close to the edge to close the hole.
To finish your sleeve, push the lining back into the sleeve and press carefully.
Topstitch around the opening close to the edge, mark where the elastic comes to with chalk and sew your button on in this spot.
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