We love the idea of concealing a cutting-edge electronic device inside a vintage wrapper. Our Double Zipper Device Sleeve combines three nostalgic prints from the wonderful Eclectic Elements series by Tim Holtz for FreeSpirit Fabrics. Three generous pockets can hold a selection of devices. The inner sleeve is sized to easily accommodate a Nook®, Kindle® or iPad® Mini. Two 7″ x 7″ outer pockets can fit the smaller Nook® or your smart phone. The front pocket can be completely sealed with a zipper, so it could also hold a wallet and keys. Or… go ahead and push against the electronic grain by tucking an actual printed book or notepad into one of the compartments! Fusible fleece between the layers keeps everything soft yet stable. So many options in one convenient bag.
The sleek, utilitarian design creates a carrier that works equally well for guys or gals. It’s a perfect option for students to tuck into a backpack or larger shoulder bag.
The fabrics we used are from the original Eclectic Elements collection, many of which are still being produced. Check out his full Foundations collection, which combines reprints from several of his most popular fabric lines.
The sleeve finishes at approximately 7″ wide by 9½” high with 7″ deep front and back pockets.
Sewing Tools You Need
Fabric and Other Supplies
NOTE: For the very best look, all your pieces should be carefully fussy cut. The yardage shown allows extra for this purpose.
- ¼ yard of 44-45″ wide cotton for the body, strap, and accent corners; we originally used Ticking in Taupe from the Eclectic Elements Collection
- ¼ yard of 44-45″ wide cotton for the front and back pockets; we originally used Measurements in Taupe from the Eclectic Elements Collection
- ¼ yard of 44-45″ wide cotton for the back pocket binding and the lining; we originally used Melange in Neutral from the Eclectic Elements Collection
NOTE: One Fat Quarter could also be used for each of these three fabrics.
- ½ yard of 20″+ wide lightweight fusible interfacing; we used Pellon Shir-Tailor
- ½ yard of 45″+ wide fusible fleece; we used Pellon Thermolam Plus
- ONE 7″ metal zipper; we used a Coats 7″ Brass Jeans Zipper in Black
- ONE 7″ separating zipper; we used a Coats 7″ Lightweight Separating Zipper in Black
- ONE 1″ D-ring; we used nickel
- Scrap or ⅛ yard of 1″ cotton webbing; we used natural
- All-purpose thread to match fabrics
- All-purpose thread in a contrasting color for topstitching; we used dark brown
- See-through ruler
- Fabric pen or pencil
- Iron and ironing board
- Scissors or rotary cutter and mat
- Seam gauge
- Seam ripper
- Straight pins
- Hand sewing needle
Getting Started and Pattern Download
- Download and print out the Device Sleeve Corner Pattern.
IMPORTANT: This pattern is ONE 8½” x 11″ sheet. You must print the PDF file at 100%. DO NOT SCALE to fit the page.
NOTE: We printed two copies of the pattern so we could cut two corners at once to insure a perfect match to the corners.
- Cut out the pattern piece along the solid line.
- From the fabric for the body, strap, and accent corners (Ticking in Taupe in our sample), cut the following (all our cuts were made with the stripes running vertically):
TWO 8″ wide x 10½” high rectangles
ONE 8″ wide x 3″ high rectangle
ONE 15″ wide x 3″ high strip for the strap
Using the pattern, fussy cut FOUR corners as shown below to create diagonal stripes
- From the fabric for the front and back pockets (Measurements in Taupe in our sample), cut FOUR 8″ x 8″ squares.
- From the fabric for the back pocket binding and the lining (Melange in Neutral in our sample), cut the following:
TWO 8″ wide x 10½” high rectangles
ONE 8″ wide x 2″ high strip
- From the fusible interfacing, cut the following:
TWO 8″ x 8″ squares
ONE 8″ x 3″ rectangle
- From the fusible fleece, cut TWO 7¼” x 10″ rectangles.
- Cut the cotton webbing into ONE 2″ length.
At Your Sewing Machine & Ironing Board
Prepare the pockets
NOTE: Throughout the project, we re-threaded as necessary to do all edgestitching and topstitching in our dark brown contrasting thread. And, as we traditionally do, for all edgestitching and topstitching, we used a slightly lengthened stitch.
- Find the four 8″ x 8″ pocket squares and the four triangle corners.
- Fold back the long side of each triangle ¼” and press well.
- Place two of the pocket squares right side up and flat on your work surface. Set the other two squares aside; these will be used later for the pocket lining.
- Place a folded corner piece on each bottom corner of each pocket square. The sides and bottom edges should be flush. Pin in place.
- Edgestitch each corner in place, running the seam just along the long folded edge.
- When all corners are stitched in place. Lift up the corner, exposing the pocket fabric. Trim back the pocket fabric to ¼”.
- Find the two squares of interfacing. Following manufacturer’s instructions, fuse one interfacing square to the wrong side of each sewn pocket square.
Create the front pocket panel with its metal zipper
- Find one exterior pocket with corners, one pocket lining, and the metal zipper. Center the zipper right side down (teeth down) across the top of the exterior pocket. Orient the zipper so the pull is on the left. The top edge of the zipper’s tape should be flush with the top edge of the pocket. Pin in place just along the top.
- Attach your Zipper foot.
- Using a ¼” seam, stitch across the top of the panel through all the layers. You should be stitching close to the zipper teeth.
NOTE: Start stitching with the zipper about half way open; as you get close to the zipper pull, if need be, you can stop with the needle in the down position, lift up the presser foot, and carefully unzip the zipper to move the pull out of the way. Replace the presser foot and finish with a nice, straight seam.
- Place the pocket lining right side down on top of the exterior pocket, aligning the top edge of the zipper tape and the lining and sandwiching the zipper between the layers. Pin the layers together.
- Flip to the exterior side so the previous seam line is visible. Still using the Zipper foot, stitch through all the layers, running the new seam directly over the previous line of stitching.
- Fold the lining and exterior wrong sides together, so the zipper stands straight up, and press.
- Switch back to a regular presser foot. Edgestitch along the zipper.
- Find the 8″ x 3″ Ticking strip and its matching interfacing strip. Following manufacturer’s instructions, fuse the interfacing to the wrong side of the fabric.
- Place the fused Ticking strip along the remaining free edge of the zipper. The fabric and the zipper are right sides together. Pin in place.
- Switch again to a Zipper foot.
- Using a ¼” seam, stitch across the panel through both layers. You should be stitching close to the zipper teeth.
- Press the strip up and away from the zipper to complete the front panel.
Create the back bound pocket
- Find the remaining pocket exterior with the corner triangles, the remaining pocket lining, and the 2″ pocket binding strip.
- Place the binding strip right sides together along the top of the exterior pocket. Pin in place.
- Switch back to a regular presser foot.
- Using a ½” seam allowance, stitch the exterior pocket to the binding.
- Press the binding and the seam allowance up and away from the pocket.
- Place the pocket lining right sides together with the exterior pocket, aligning the top edge of the lining with the remaining raw edge of the binding strip. Pin in place.
- Using a ½” seam allowance, stitch the pocket lining to the binding.
- Press this seam allowance down towards the binding strip. The two seam allowances should almost touch.
- Fold the pocket in half through the center of the binding, so the two layers are now wrong sides together. Align the sides and bottom raw edges. Press well.
- Edgestitch along the seam, within the binding strip, through all the layers.
Attach the pockets to the main panels, add the top zipper and assemble front to back
- Find the two 8″ x 10½” Ticking panels and the two 7¼” x 10″ pieces of fusible fleece.
- Center the fusible fleece on the wrong side of each fabric panel. Following manufacturer’s instructions, fuse the fleece in place.
- Flip the Ticking panels to the right side.
- Place the back bound pocket right side up on one Ticking panel, aligning the bottom edges and sides. Pin in place. Machine baste in place, staying close to the outer edges.
- Place the front zippered pocket panel right side up on the remaining Ticking panel, aligning all the raw edges. Pin in place.
- Edgestitch along the top of the metal zipper through ALL the layers – this secures the pocket and creates the top edge of what will become the front sealed pocket.
NOTE: We stayed with our regular presser foot for this seam, but if you could also switch back to your Zipper foot if you are worried about getting close enough to the zipper teeth when sewing through all the layers.
- Place the exterior zipper panel right side up and flat on your work surface. Find the separating zipper. Place this zipper along the top edge, which is now two layers of Ticking, centering the zipper within the panel as shown in the photo below.
- Switch again to a Zipper foot.
- Using a ¼” seam allowance, stitch across the panel through all three layers (two fabric layers plus one zipper layer). You should be stitching close to the zipper teeth.
- Press the zipper up and the seam allowance down. Edgestitch along the bottom edge of the zipper to hold the seam allowance in place.
- Place the back panel with the bound pocket right side up and flat on your work surface. Place the front panel on top of it, right sides together and with the remaining raw edge of the separating zipper flush with the top raw edge of the back panel.
- Using a ¼” seam, stitch across the panel through both layers (the back Ticking panel and the zipper).
- As above, press the seam allowance away from the zipper and edgestitch along the zipper to hold the seam allowance in place.
- Here’s what the assembled piece should look like now when laid flat.
- Separate the zipper, so you have two panels.
- Find the 2″ length of cotton webbing and the D-ring. Slip the webbing through the D-ring. Align the raw ends of the webbing. Pin the webbing in place on the left side of the front panel, centered within the top Ticking strip. The ends of the webbing should be flush with the raw edge of the fabric.
- Place the two panels right sides together, aligning both sides and the bottom edges and sandwiching the webbing and D-ring between the layers. Pin in place along both sides and across the bottom.
- Switch back to a regular presser foot.
- Using a ½” seam allowance, stitch along both sides and across the bottom, pivoting at the corners.
- Clip the corners and turn the sleeve right side out. Re-join the two sides of the zipper.
- Set the exterior sleeve aside.
- Find the two 8″ x 10½” lining pieces.
- Place the two lining pieces right sides together. Pin in place along both sides and across the bottom.
- Using a ½” seam allowance, stitch along both sides and across the bottom, pivoting at the corners. Clip the corners at a diagonal.
- Turn down the top raw edge ½” all around. Press.
- Find the exterior bag. It should be right side out.
- With lining still wrong side out, slip the lining inside the exterior sleeve so the two sleeves are now wrong sides together.
- Align the bottom and side seams. The top folded edge of the bag should fall below the zipper teeth by about ⅛”. If it doesn’t, adjust the lining fold to fit and gently re-press.
- Pin the layers together.
- Thread the hand sewing needle.
- Slip stitch the lining to the bag, using very small stitches. Stitch along the front and the back, but leave the lining loose where it wraps over the side seams. This allows some “give” in the lining so it folds smoothly as you zip the device sleeve open and shut.
Make and attach the strap
- Find the 15″ x 3″ strip.
- Fold the strap in half lengthwise and press to set a center crease.
- Open the strip wrong side up so the crease line is visible. Fold in each raw edge so they meet one another at the center crease line. Press well.
- Fold the strip in half along the original crease line, aligning the folded edges.
- Edgestitch along both long sides. The ends remain raw.
- Fold the strap in half, but do not align the ends. Instead, place one end 2″ up from the opposite end. Pin in place.
- Find the completed sleeve. Slip the longer end of the strap through the D-ring. Fold under the raw end ½” then place this folded end against the strap so it conceals the unfinished edge of the pinned-in-place end.
- Double-stitch across the strap, through all the layers, to secure.
Project Design: Alicia Thommas
Sample Creation and Instructional Outline: Michele Mishler