Are you new to sewing with Cork? This is a fabulous fabric, perfect for bag making. I am super excited to share this new free crossbody bag made with cork.
To be honest this crossbody bag has been designed around the size of my wallet. With the children a little older I find I don’t need to carry quite as much “stuff” around. With this cork pattern, I’ve chosen to make an easy bag, keeping it lovely and simple.
If you would like to add an internal slip pocket or external zip pocket check out my free bag making for beginners course which includes how to tutorials. I have many free patterns to choose from, from a mini rolltop backpack to waxed canvas tote, to a project bag.
I love this style of attaching straps to crossbody bags, having admired it for a while it seemed only fitting to use this method for my new bag.
This fabulous printed cork fabric was gifted from Minerva, I have paired it with fabric scraps for the lining and silver hardware (mainly as that is what I had to hand!). You can equally use different fabrics, changing it up for waxed canvas or a fun cotton print.
Tips for Sewing Cork Fabric
- Mark your cutting lines on the back of the cork fabric with chalk and use sharp shears or a rotary cutter for cutting.
- Use non-stick, leather or jeans needles in size 80/12 or heavier depending on how many thicknesses you are sewing through.
- Choose a quality all-purpose thread for topstitching.
- If your cork is not flowing through your sewing machine try a walking foot, or teflon foot.
- Pins will leave holes in your cork fabric so I suggest using clover clips.
- Use a regular length stitch for sewing seams and a slightly longer stitch for topstitching.
- To reduce bulk, whenever possible, layer fabrics for straps instead of creating a tube. Finish with topstitching.
- You can press cork on a medium heat but it does not crease easily, topstitch for crisp edges.
- Wonder Tape or Fabric Tac are your friends for keeping zippers in place while stitching cork fabric.
If you would an ad free PDF pattern with the printable pattern pieces, then for less than a coffee you support me and purchase one in my Etsy shop. Alternatively, enjoy the free instructions below.
(this post may contain affiliate links, which means I get a small % back if you purchase after clicking, at no cost to you- refer to ‘disclosure policy’ in the menu for more info)
- Cork fabric 1/2 yard (1/2meter)
- 12′ of cotton fabric (30cm of width of bolt)
- 2 D rings and 1 slider 1″ wide
- Twist bag lock
- Fusible fleece
- Pellon Shape Flex SF101 (US) interfacing
- Fabric Tac glue
- Clover Clips
- 4 Double Cap Rivets
First download the free pattern pieces, if you have not taped PDF patterns together before check out my how to tutorial.
Cut out two bag pieces front and back of cork, lining fabric, interfacing and fusible fleece
Cut out one closing flap piece in the cork, lining fabric, interfacing and fusible fleece.
Cut out the adjustable crossbody strap by 63″ by 1″ and two sides pieces by 3 1/2 by 1″.
Following the manufacturer’s instructions adhere the fusible fleece to the back of the cork. I found this took a little longer than the usual 10-15 seconds, following the instructions I also ironed from the right side of the cork (with a sheet of cotton in between the iron and the cork) for five seconds to help this adhere. Then adhere the interfacing to the back of the lining fabric.
Lets sew up the body of the bag. Place the cork fabric right sides facing and stitch around the two sides and bottom of the bag. The seam allowance is 1/2″. Note I have chosen to use clover clips, as pins create holes in the cork fabric.
Fold the edges so the sides of the cut out squares meet. Stitch along this straight edge, therefore boxing the corner of the bag. Repeat these two steps for the lining.
Stitch along this straight edge, therefore boxing the corner of the bag. Repeat these two steps for the lining.
Place the right sides together. Stitch around the sides and bottom.
Trim the corners then turn right side out and press.
Top stitch around this edge.
Measure the central position 3/4″ up from the base of the flap. Place the twist-lock onto the bag. Place faceplate of twist lock (with prongs) upside down where you want to be and trace around the opening for your hole.
Cut out the traced hole, being careful not to make hole too large! Likewise not too small, you need to be able to place the two parts of the lock over the hole without any fabric showing in the hole. I use sharp small scissors, alternatively, you could use a craft knife.
Apply Fraystop to the edges and set aside to dry.
Place both sides over hole, then press together making sure they are perfectly straight. Push the prongs down.
Assemble bag and closing flap
Let’s make D ring loops next, cut two 4″ of cork. Press the edges into the middle, then fold in half again so the raw edges are enclosed. Topstitch the two long edges.
Repeat with your second piece.
Thread the D ring onto the piece of strapping (you have just made) and fold the strapping in half. Place on the back of the bag, 1/4″ in from the edge, so the raw edges align with the raw edge of the bag. Baste in place and repeat for the other side.
Place the closing flap so the right side is facing the back of the main bag baste in place in the seam allowance.
Fold the flap over so it faces the front of the bag, making sure it is perfectly centrally aligned mark the position for the twist lock.
Using the prongs on the back of the twist part of the lock as a guide, draw two lines where your prong holes will be cut.
Cut the prong holes for the twist lock, again being careful not to make too small or too big! I like to use a seam ripper for this.
Place the prongs of the lock through from the right side to the wrong side, then place the washer with slots over prongs, lastly flatten out the prongs making them as flat and tight as you can.
Now we have completed the lock lets sew the lining together, as you did for the outer bag.
Place the lining over the main bag so the right sides face each other. Align the raw edges.
Stitch around the top, leaving a big turning gap at the front of the bag.
Pull the fabric through, turning the bag right sides out. Fold in the raw edges where you have turned the bag rights side out.
Topstitch around the top of the bag, closing the turning gap and professionally finishing the bag.
Adjustable Shoulder strap
The final step! Fold in the short edges of your long strap, I have used Fabric tac to hold down.
Then as you did for the fold the fabric in half and press, open out and fold in the edges to this middle line, then fold in half again enclosing the raw edges.
Top stitch around the strap.
Thread one end through the slider, fold the edge in. Either stitch in place or use double cap rivets.
To insert double cap rivets use a hole punch to cut a hole through both pieces of strap. Insert the double cap rivet and using a hammer bang together (as per the manufacturers instructions). I used two cap rivets.
Thread the other end of the strap through one of your D rings then back through the slider. Lastly through the other D ring, fold back on itself and insert two double cap rivets to hold.