Winning at Sewing: Quilted Makeup Bag

I hatched the idea of making a makeup bag for my sister for Christmas after seeing some tutorials on Pinterest (you can see some of them on my sewing board here).

I loosely followed this tutorial, at least to get the general dimensions and shape to cut my fabric. And after giving my sister a glimpse at my stash (wow, that sounded suggestive) and thinking about the fabric she selected, I decided to quilt it to give it a little extra stability. The outer fabric is an Anna Maria Horner "Coordinates" rayon challis that I thrifted at the same time as the fabric for my butterfly dress.

The good

I LOVED doing the quilting on this. It was so meditative and enjoyable, and got me really excited to do more quilting projects. I also really liked the combination of outer and lining fabrics (the lining is a scrap left over from my mod floral dress).

The bad

I wish I had taken the time to source a zipper and piping that matched! But I was so impatient to get it done that I just used what I had in my stash. I also had trouble figuring out how to get the zipper sewn in and then turn the whole thing right-side out again, so I just sewed in the zipper by hand. I love hand-sewing, but I was a bit overzealous and stitched too close to the zipper in parts, making it hard to open and close.

Overall verdict

This was a fun little project that would be a great stash-buster. With a bit more practice, I feel like I could easily knock out another one for a gift. I was really happy with the finished product and I can think of lots of ways that it could be modified (a more decorative zipper, adding a zipper pull, introducing a third fabric with a horizontal panel, etc.) to change it up a bit. I'm calling this a sewing win for sure.


  1. As the recipient of this bag, I would call it a definite sewing win! Thanks, Emily! The pictures don't do justice to how well the two fabrics work together.


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