This fabric pod basket model will help you organize things in every room of the house! I love these storage modules in my sewing room for accessories and tools. They make great craft containers and look adorable on a pegboard, in the living room, and on a bedroom nightstand. I think I'm going to make another one to use in my car.
This pattern of fabric storage pods (some people call them bubbles) is even better because it has pockets! Pockets can be sewn to the inside or outside of the basket (or both). They are optional, so you can also create a pocket module without the pockets if you wish.
And guess what??? This free sewing pattern is also suitable for large quarters!
This blog post has been converted to optional PDF optimized for printing. Find it here. The free Pocket Pod pattern is included in the blog post below and is completely free to read, print and sew! Simply press CTRL+P on your computer to print. The print-optimized PDF template for $3 is optional. Did you know that you can organize ALL print-optimized PDF files into one library that you can access at any time? Check it out.
These DIY fabric baskets are a great beginner sewing project because:
- Only a few supplies are needed and not a lot of fabric.
- There is a free template you can download now.
- You will learn how to use iron-on fleece (used in many bags and pouches).
- All sewing is very forgiving if you make a mistake.
Everyone needs a few fabric pods in their sewing or craft room, so they also make great gifts. This pattern might remind you of my reader favorite Car Diddy Bag as well as my Pegboard Baskets pattern, although the Pocket Pod Basket is larger than both.
Dimensions of the pocket pod basket
Finished bins measure approximately 7 1/2″ tall and 7 1/2″ wide, not including the hanging loop. With the hanging loop they measure 9 1/2″.
This free tutorial includes a free downloadable pattern and step-by-step instructions with photos. You can choose to sew the pockets to the inside of the basket or to the outside of the basket. OR, make two rows of pockets and place them inside And out.
This model is suitable for Fat Quarters
A fat quarter is a commonly sold pre-cut fabric that measures 18 inches high and 21 inches wide.
If you want to use fat quarters to make your Pocket Pod baskets, you will need a fat quarter for the outer fabric, a fat quarter for the lining fabric, and half a fat quarter (or a fat quarter eighth) for the pocket. . The hanging loop at the top of the basket is just a small piece that can be cut from fabric scraps.
Tips for choosing fabric and thread:
This project works best with cotton quilting fabric. It is easy to sew and available in many beautiful patterns. You can make this project in just one fabric or use coordinating prints like mine. Any combination will look fabulous.
You can also use cotton or polyester home decor fabric or canvas. In this case, I would use a single layer of iron-on interfacing because these fabrics are heavier than quilting cotton.
Polyester thread is a good choice for this project because polyester is strong and has the least stretch to help it withstand heavy use.
What stabilizer do I need?
I used heatnbond fleece interfacing to stabilize my interior and exterior pieces. This gives my fabric pods great structure and reinforces the pockets.
You can also use flexible foam stabilizer, in which case I suggest using a single layer as it is thicker than iron-on fleece. The sew-on variety is great (here's a tutorial showing how to brush foam stabilizer onto fabric), as is the iron-on type.
So let’s start sewing the Pocket Pod pattern!
You will need:
- 3/4 yard of cotton fabric or 3 fat quarters
- 3/4 yard iron-on fleece interfacing at least 20″ wide (as HeatnBond Iron-on Fleece)
- Cutting tools: scissors, rotary cutter, acrylic ruler and cutting mat
- A sewing machine
- A pen or pencil to mark the fabric
- Sewing pins
- The downloadable pattern template:
Cut out the pattern pieces and glue them together as shown.
1. From cotton fabric, cut:
- 2 on the fold of the fabric using the pocket basket pattern template, one for the outside of the basket and one for the lining*
- 1 rectangle 9” x 21” for the pocket
- 1 rectangle 4″ x 5″ for the hanging tab
*Advice: Be sure to fold your fabric and place the edge of the template marked ‘fabric fold' along the fold of the fabric.
2. Cut two pieces of iron-on fleece interfacing using the pattern template.
Tip: If your interface is only 20 inches wide, it will still work just fine. Fold the interfacing in half and place the “fabric fold” edge of the pattern along the fold. The opposite edge of the pattern template will overhang the interface by 1/2″. This is fine and only means that there will be no iron-on fleece in the seam allowance.
Fuse the iron-on fleece with the outer pieces and lining.
1. Place the bumpy adhesive side of a piece of iron-on fleece against the back of one of the fabric pieces cut using the pattern template. Tap to merge. Repeat with the remaining fabric piece and interfacing piece that were cut using the pattern template.
Pick the pockets
1. Fold the 9″ x 21″ pocket rectangle in half lengthwise, right sides together. Pin the long edges together.
2. Sew the long edges together using a 1/4″ seam allowance to form a long tube.
Turn the pocket piece right side out and press it flat.
3. Topstitch along the folded edge 1/8″ from the edge. This will be the top edge of the pocket.
Attach the pockets
1. Lay the pocket piece on the right side of one of the pieces of fabric that has the interface fused to the back. You can choose to sew the pockets towards the outside of the basket or towards the inside (the outer piece or the lining piece).
Arrange the pocket strip so that it is about 5/8″ above the rectangular cutouts at the bottom of the fabric piece and about 5/8″ below the curve at the top edge.
Place pins on the sides of the pocket piece and along the bottom edge.
2. Use a long stitch length to baste the pocket piece in place 1/4″ from the side edges.
3. Then use a regular stitch length of 2-3 to sew along the bottom edge of the pocket 1/8″ from the edge.
4. To mark the pockets, use a ruler and a fabric pen or fabric pencil to draw vertical lines on the pocket piece.
Mark a vertical line down the middle. If you want four pockets, draw a vertical line on each side of the center line, about 5 inches apart.
If you want six pockets, draw two vertical lines on either side of the center line, each about 3 1/4″ apart.
5. Sew along the vertical lines you drew, starting at the bottom of the pocket. Backstitch carefully at the top and bottom of the pocket.
Sew the fabric pod basket together
Seam allowances are 1/2″, unless otherwise noted.
1. Fold it lining piece in half with the right edges together (right sides of the fabric). Pin and sew along the long straight edge.
Press the seam open.
2. Fold the basket liner piece with the seam in the center and the bottom edges together. The corners will be cut with the basket folded like this.
Sew on the bottom edge, leaving an opening of approximately 4′” to turn the fabric backing right side out later. Press the bottom seam to open it.
3. Flatten the corner of the bin so that the cut area forms a straight line. Pin.
4. Sew the corner. Repeat to sew the opposite corner.
5. Repeat steps 1-4 above with the outer piece, except sew all along the bottom seam (do not leave an opening for turning).
6. Turn the exterior piece right side out in preparation for the final steps.
Make the hanging loop:
1. Fold the 4″ x 5″ strip of fabric in half lengthwise (wrong side to wrong side) and iron. Open and fold the long raw edges toward the center and press again. Fold in half and press again to form a 1″ x 5″ strip.
2. Topstitch along both long edges, approximately 1/8″ from the sides of the tab.
3. Fold the loop and pin the raw edges along the top edge of the basket liner. Arrange the loop so that it is centered on the seam on the inside back of the basket.
Sew the ends of the loop 1/4″ from the top edge of the basket.
Finish sewing the Pocket Pod basket
1. Fit the exterior of the basket inside the basket liner so that the pieces are right sides together. Line up the top edges and place pins all around.
Tip: If your sewing machine is in a cabinet like mine, place the pins inside. Otherwise, place the pins outside the basket and use the free arm of your sewing machine.
2. Sew around the top edge of the basket with a 1/2″ seam allowance.
Use sharp scissors to make clips and notches spaced 1/2″ apart around the curved edges of the top seam.
Tip: Make straight clips in the “valley” and cut V-shaped notches in the “hills”.
3. Turn the basket right side out through the opening at the bottom of the liner.
Tuck the edges of the opening inward. Sew the opening closed by hand or using a sewing machine, sewing close to the edge.
4. Push the liner inside the basket. Carefully press down on the basket. Take care to press firmly around the top edge so that the curved edge is smooth and the seam is just above the edge.
5. Topstitch around the top edge of the basket 1/4″ from the edge.
And you're done! This Pocket Pod basket pattern is so quick and fun to make – you'll make so many baskets that you'll have to give them to all your friends!
As always, I love seeing what you make with my tutorials. Please post a photo on Instagram and tag me @sewcanshe or #sewcanshe so I can see!
Are you looking for other organization-related sewing projects? Check:
Or check out this roundup of 11+ sewing projects to make you more organized.
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