Once you have the basics mastered in this zipper pouch tutorial, you can add bows, and flowers and even create patchwork zipper pouches. This article and zipper pouch pattern is easy for beginners and doesn't take long. Have you got lots of scrap fabrics and fat quarters that you want to use? I think we all do! Well, why not learn how to sew a zipper pouch! It really is easy.
Zipper Pouch Tutorial & Zipper Pouch Pattern
This lined zipper pouch tutorial will show you how to make a zipper pouch pattern of any size. Use a fat quarter of fabric or your fabric scraps for this easy for a beginners project.
You can use a zipper pouch pattern for a pencil pouch, storing makeup, cards or anything you can think of, depending on the size you make. It looks great as a clutch bag with a wrist strap.
Supplies For Zipper Pouches
- Fabric Scraps- I like working with quilting cotton as it is easy to sew and gives your zipper pouch a nice amount of body or stiffness. You can purchase fat quarters cheaply so you can easily mix and match fabrics without buying larger pieces.
Tips for choosing zipper pouch fabrics:
- Search through your scrap baskets and join smaller pieces together to make a patchwork zipper pouch.
- It is best to use thinner lining fabrics if you use heavy outer pieces.
- If your outer fabric is thin and flimsy, use some fusible interfacing to make it a little stiffer.
- For beginners, use cotton fabric as it is easier to sew than silky or slipper fabrics like polyester or silk.
- Thread - Matching colors looks best and is the most forgiving for beginner sewers.
- Zipper - The zipper teeth should be 1 inch (2.5cm) shorter than the width of your fabric rectangle. Most of the time this means the tape part of the zipper will be the same length as your fabric.
Tips for choosing zippers for pouch:
- Zippers are measured along their teeth and not the tape. Most of the time, the zipper tape will measure the same as your fabric but I have specified a measurement along the teeth since the tape ends can vary.
- If your zipper is a little longer than you need, don't waste time and run off to the store; shorten it! (Read How to shorten a zipper.)
- I used metal zipper teeth in my tutorial, but if you are a beginner, then a plastic or nylon coil zipper is much easier to sew as the heads are generally much smaller.
- Zipper Foot and Regular Presser Foot (Read 10 best sewing machine feet to buy)
- Sewing Basics - Sewing machine, scissors or rotary cutter and mat, iron and ironing board.
Zipper Pouch Pattern - Video Tutorial
Watch this video showing you how to sew a zipper pouch, otherwise, skip to the instructions and photos below. Subscribe to my YouTube channel for weekly sewing and craft videos.
How to Make a Zipper Pouch, Step-by-Step Instructions
Here is the step-by-step zipper pouch tutorial. The best part is that it is a free sewing pattern!
Step 1 - Cutting the Zipper Pouch Pattern
Cut 4 rectangular pieces of fabric (2 for the outer fabric and 2 for the lining pieces).
- Width: 1 inch (2.5cm) longer than your zipper
- Height: Your choice
I cut my four rectangle fabric pieces 7" x 5” (18 x 13cm) to fit a 6” (15cm) zipper. This made a small zipper pouch. You can cut any size rectangle you like.
Step 2 - Attach the Zipper
Optional - Press interfacing or fusible fleece on the wrong side of the main fabric pieces. My quilting cotton was thick enough not to need extra lining.
Put the zipper right sides together on one of the OUTSIDE pieces. The head or zipper pull should be down and to the left. Now put a lining piece on top, right sides together.
Ensure the zipper tape edge is lined up with the fabric's raw edge.
Stitch along the top with a zipper foot, getting as close as you can to the zipper.
SEWING TIPS: If you have bulky zipper tabs that are hard to sew past on one go, you can do this in 2 parts.
- Start with the zipper closed and start sewing 2 inches(5cm) past the zipper head.
- Now go back and open the zipper and sew the top part.
Step 3- Press
Press the fabric away from the zipper. Be careful not to put your iron on plastic zippers. Topstitch across the seam through both layers of fabric (lining and outside).
Step 4 - Attach Zipper to Other Side
Join the zipper to the other side of the pouch.
Put the lining underneath with the right side up. Then place your already sewn piece with the zipper right side up. Add the other outside piece last. This will be right sides together. This means you’ve sandwiched the zipper between the lining and the main outside piece!
Stitch with a zipper foot using the same method as the other side. Remember you may need to sew in 2 parts for a bulky zipper tab.
This is how it looks when you have sewn the zipper on both sides.
Step 5 - Topstitching
Press the seam open and top stitch along the zipper. If your lining and outside fabrics are a little out of alignment, you can trim them the same to make the next steps easier. Just be conservative, and don't cut too much.
Step 6 - Pin the Outside
Undo the zipper ¾ of the way across. (very important!!) If you forget to open the zipper you will have a really hard time turning it the right way out and will end up unpicking.
Put the outside
At the zipper joins, put the side of the zipper towards the lining and the seam towards the main outside fabric.
Remember – zipper towards the lining and seam towards the outside fabric.
Step 7 - Sew the Zipper Pouch Seam
Stitch around with a ⅜ inch seam allowance (1cm) leaving a 2” (5cm) gap in the bottom of the lining. Backstitch the beginning and end.
Be careful when sewing over the thicker joins at the ends of the zipper. You might want to hand turn your wheel as it is not worth risking bending or breaking a needle.
The raw edges don't need to be finished since they will be hidden inside your zipper pouch.
Step 8 - Clip and Turn
Clip the corners and the thick zipper ends. Turn the zipper pouch the right way out.
Stitch the gap in the bottom seam closed. You can hand-stitch with a ladder stitch for an invisible finish or just use your machine. I used my machine as I was in a hurry. If you use a matching color no one will notice except you.
Step 9 - Finish and Press
The final step for our zipper pouch tutorial is to push the lining back inside the outside fabric and give your pouch a good press.
Zipper Pouch Tutorial - Decoration Ideas
Here are some decoration ideas for your zipper pouches. Add bows, flowers embroidery, tassels, and sequins - one at a time or all at once.
- How to Sew a Wrist Strap. This tutorial will show you how to make the wrist strap pictured. This can really elevate your zipper pouch and allow you to go hands-free on your next girl's night out. If your zipper head is small, use a small ring to join the wrist strap through the hole
- DIY fabric bow. I think these are a must. Look how cute my striped bow looks!
- How to Make a Tassel. You can also decorate your zipper pouch with a fun bright colored tassel.
- Yo-Yo Flowers - These classic flowers are made from a circle of fabric and then gathered.
- Fabric flowers can add a fun pretty touch
- Leather tassels look sophisticated. Use real leather or faux leather to suit your tastes and budget.
- Sewing ric-rac is a cheap and cheerful decorative idea.
- Embroidery - This is easy and relaxing to do. I call it a TV job. Turn the TV on and do your embroidery while watching your favorite show. Learn Embroidery Flowers, Sewing Embroidery Leaves, Embroidery Letters
Zipper Pouch Tutorial - In Conclusion
I hope you enjoyed this zipper pouch tutorial; here are some more from my blog:
Triangle Zipper Pouch
This triangle pouch sewing project is great for storing small items and coins. It can be made from leather, vinyl or thick fabric and can be used with or without the wrist strap.
Scottie Zipper Pouch
This dog purse pattern free tutorial comes with a printable template so you can sew your own Scottie applique. It is made with leather or vinyl (faux leather) with a zipper on top and is great for keeping things separate in your handbag.
Sunshine Zipper Pouch
This round clutch free pattern includes a printable template and video to help you get great results. A little larger than the last 2 zipper pouches, this one can be used for your cosmetics or even fit your phone.
- Free Makeup Brush Roll Pattern
- DIY Coin Purse
- Tissue Cover Pattern
- How to Make Gift Bags
- Star Clutch
- Tote Bag Pattern (Free sewing tutorial)
Zipper Pouch Tutorial
- Sewing Basics Sewing machine, thread, pins, iron
- Zipper Presser Foot
- All Purpose Presser Foot
- Cotton Fabric
- 6" (15cm) Zipper Zipper tape should the same length as your fabric rectangle. The teeth will be 1" (2.5cm) shorter.
- Cut 4 rectangles of fabric 7x5" (18x3cm) or your chosen size. (2 main and 2 lining) Put the zipper right side together (head to the left) with an outside fabric piece. Place the lining fabric on top of the main with right sides together.
- Stitch across with a zipper foot. Press the seam open. Topstitch across through all layers.
- Join zipper to the other side the same way. The zipper will be sandwiched between the main and lining. (Right side toghether with the main)
- Press the seam open. Topstitch across through all layers.
- Undo the zipper ¾ of the way across. Put the main pieces right sides together and the lining pieces right sides together. The zipper should be towards the lining.
- Stitch the seam leaving a gap at the bottom of the lining.
- Clip the corners and turn to the right side. Press. Stitch the gap closed. Decorate the zipper pouch or add a wrist strap.