How to Make a Pencil Bag

Two Methods:Preparing the DesignSewing the Pencil Bag

Making your own pencil bag is a great way to use up scrap fabric that you love but that isn't large enough for bigger craft projects. It's also an eco-friendly option for toting pencils around, and a reflection of your own style.

Method 1
Preparing the Design

  1. Image titled Make a Pencil Bag Step 1
    Decide upon the fabric type. Use a sturdy fabric. Cottons work well, as would corduroy, denim or heavier weight fabrics.
    • The stronger the fabric, the longer it'll last and endure being toted about and having sharp items poked into it.
  2. Image titled Make a Pencil Bag Step 2
    Decide upon the size and shape. These will depend upon the amount, length and width of the items you'll be placing inside the case. The shape of a square or rectangle works best for a pencil bag.
    • Use a ruler or measuring tape to work out the size of the bag; measure the contents and allow for a little extra room around the edges (for ease of movement) to calculate the total size.
  3. Image titled Make a Pencil Bag Step 3
    Decide on which side you'll be placing a zipper. A zipper can be placed either at the short side or long side of a rectangle, depending upon your preference.

Method 2
Sewing the Pencil Bag

  1. Image titled Make a Pencil Bag Step 6
    Cut the fabric into two equally sized square or rectangle shapes. Allow for a half-inch/1 centimeter (0.4 in) seam allowance on all sides.
    • Another alternative is to fold one large piece of fabric in half and use the fold as the base of the pencil bag. You'll need to press the fold line before stitching the bag together if you do this instead of using two pieces of fabric.
  2. Image titled Make a Pencil Bag Step 5
    Hold the two pieces of fabric in place with sewing pins.
  3. Image titled Make a Pencil Bag Step 7
    Attach the zipper to both pieces of the fabric, at the side you've chosen to have it. Fold over a half-inch/1 centimeter (0.4 in) of fabric on one side of the square or rectangle and iron it flat. Place the edge of the zipper beneath the fold. Stitch the zipper in place with a tight, sturdy stitch.
  4. Image titled Make a Pencil Bag Step 8
    With right sides together, stitch the remaining three sides of the case together. Double stitch the seams to ensure strength.
  5. Image titled Make a Pencil Bag Step 9
    Unzip the zipper. Turn the case right side out.
  6. Image titled Make a Pencil Bag Intro
    Done. Fill with pencils and related items and you're all set.


  • This could also be used to make coin purse or cosmetic bag. You may wish to add liner material if using for either purpose.
  • Seam allowance is the amount of fabric that extends beyond the stitching.
  • Utilize the instructions that come with a zipper, as a further guide for attaching it.
  • If you like hand sewing, this whole project can be stitched by hand. It's quick and easy to do, making it ideal for beginner sewers.
  • Reinforce the seams as needed. You could even use blanket stitch for strength and an interesting finish.

Things You'll Need

  • Fabric
  • Zipper
  • Scissors
  • Needle
  • Matching thread
  • Sewing pins
  • Iron
    Image titled Make a Pencil Bag Step 4
  • Sewing machine (optional)

Article Info

Featured Article

Categories: Featured Articles | Sewing Bags and Purses | Stationery