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I went on my very first fabric store shop hop last night for some great quilting stores in metro Detroit. Have you ever been on a shop hop before? You buy a “passport” which entitles you to special sales and gifts at each participating store. Knowing I’d be checking out some shops I’d never been to before, I had a feeling I’d be picking up all sorts of good information (AKA lots of flyers and papers). I also wanted to bring some fabric scraps with me so I could get additional yardage that I need, so it quickly occurred to me that I’d need a special pouch to hold all of this in one place in my tote. The Shop Hop Project Pouch was born.


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Inside this pouch you’ll have three compartments:

  • 1 large pocket for miscellaneous items
  • 1 small pocket (with Velcro) for a pen or pencil
  • 1 medium pocket for business cards or fabric samples

Start out by measuring and cutting all your fabric. Press the fabric (not the plastic) and set aside. For this pouch you’ll need:

  • 2 pieces of fabric that are 20″ tall and 12″ wide
  • 1 piece of plastic (your choice on the gauge) that’s 7″ x 12″
  • 1 piece of plastic that’s 2″ by 12″
  • 1 piece of plastic that’s 4″ by 12″
  • Velcro (sticky or regular)
  • Any embellishments of your choosing (buttons, trim, etc.)
  • Matching thread for your fabric

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Once all your pieces are cut, place them on the piece of fabric you want on the inside of the pouch. Take the biggest piece of plastic and pin it at the bottom. You’ll want to pin in each of the four corners as the plastic I used (the thinnest my store had available) tended to move around a lot while working with it.
Take the 2″ piece and pin it above the bottom piece, about two inches higher. Take the last piece and pin toward the top, about 1-2″ (your preference) above the middle piece. Again, pin and make sure they’re secure.
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Next, sew the plastic pockets on to your fabric. I stayed as close the edge as possible because when we sew the outside fabric to this panel, we want the outside plastic seams to disappear. I eyeballed this and it was about 1/8″.
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On your final medium pocket, measure 3″ and sew a straight line to accommodate a business card. You can adjust this to whatever width you’d like based on the items you’d like to hold there, but I wanted two spots for cards. My last pocket was a bit wider to hold fabric samples or trim samples.
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Once you’re done sewing, trim all loose threads. Take your outside panel and place on top of your finished inside panel, right sides together. Pin in place.
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Sew the panels together. Leave a five-inch opening at the top to turn right sides out. You want to keep the plastic pocket seams hidden once this is folded inside out, so I found a standard 1/4″ stitch did the trick. However, check your seams and adjust accordingly.
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Turn the piece right sides out. Turn out all corners and press the piece flat with your hands. Press your top opening and pin shut. Top stitch the entire piece.
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Sew “fold” lines above the bottom and middle pockets. Fold up your bottom first and see where it naturally falls. Mark this and sew straight across. Do the same for the top flap.
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You’re all set! I added a piece of sticky Velcro on my pencil pocket and for the main flaps, reinforcing with a button and few stitches. Here are a few more views of the finished piece. I used cotton, but try experimenting with canvas and cotton laminates.
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