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March 2020: Toiletry bags for A Better Life for Foster Kids

Date Posted:1 March 2020 

Toiletry bags for 'A Better Life for Foster Kids' charity

A Better Life for Foster Kids organisation strives to improve the short and longterm physical, educational and psychosocial outcomes for children in out-of-homecare in Victoria. They vision is to give children in care a feeling of dignity and self-worth and lessening their feelings of social stigma.

We’re joining A Better Life for Foster Kids charity to support this great cause and sewing toiletry bags to be given to these children. These bags will be filled with toiletry items and given out to children in need.


  • 1 x fat quarter (20” x 20” square)
  • 1 x piece of contrast fabric (size: 7 ½” x 14”)
  • Piecing thread
  • 2 x pieces of 30” long ribbon (drawstring)
  • Blue Pen
  • Patchwork ruler & cutter
  • Base pattern - Download now →

The charity kindly requests to keep the bags plain, simple and gender neutral as they are given to boys and girls.


1. Cut the fat quarter down to a rectangle sized 17” x 20”
2. Cut the circle shape from the paper pattern sheet.
3. Fold the contrast fabric in half and cut a circle (it will cut 2 x circles), positioning it
towards the bottom of the fabric (as shown below).

contrast fabric

4. From the remaining contrast fabric cut a 1 ½” strip along the length.

2 circles cut


General machine information

Stitch - Straight stitch
Stitch length - 2.0
Foot - Regular sewing foot and ¼"
¼" seam used for construction
Use 'pivot function' if your machine has it. This makes it easier when inserting the circles.


1. Fold the main fabric in half lengthwise. Using a ¼” seam, sew 1” along from one end of the fabric, reverse then stop.

main fabric

2. Leave a 2” gap and begin sewing along the remaining seam, reverse at the beginning and end of the seam.
3. Take one of the circles and with right sides together pin to one end of the “cylinder”.

main fabric

4. Activate pivot function on your machine if you have it, and using your ¼” piecing foot sew around the circle.
5. Repeat inserting the second circle at the other end of the cylinder. Clip knotches ½ inch apart into your seam allowance around your circles once you have finished.

main fabric

6. Pull fabric through the 2” gap to turn the fabric to the right side.

main fabric

7. Push one circle down on top of the second circle (wrong sides together) to create the toiletry bag. Iron the rim of the bag to create a straight pressed edge.

main fabric

main fabric

8. Using your fabric marker (Blue pen) of choice, measure 1” down from the top of the pressed seam. Mark the fabric with a dashed line, set bag aside.

main fabric

9. To make the tubing for the ribbon, take the 1 ½” piece of contrast fabric and fold in half and cut - yields 2 x pieces. Fold in half again and cut - yields 4 x pieces.
10. Press ¼” seam along each side and end of the four pieces then set aside.

main fabric

11. Take the bag and place the ribbon tubes evenly around the top of the bag with one edge on the dashed line.

toiletry bag

12. Stitch in place along the top and bottom of tubing.

toiletry bag

13. Remove markings on top of bag, iron.

toiletry bag

14. Thread each piece of ribbon through the tubing then tie a knot on the end to secure each ribbon.

toiletry bag

Your toiletry bag is complete!

toiletry bag
toiletry bag


These toiletry bags will be filled with items before they are distributed to the kids. You are most welcome to fill your bag yourself. If you choose to, please find a list below of the items you can put in your bag.

  • Toothbrush (basic)
  • Toothpaste (110g size)
  • Hair brush
  • Facecloth
  • Soap
  • Lip Balm for 10 years and up - Girls
  • Deodorant


This sewalong will run from 1st – 31st March 2020.


The pillow can be dropped in or posted to any of the Echidna stores during the month of the sewalong. Please send any donations made after the sewalong month directly to the charity:


A Better Life for Foster Kids
PO Box 1138


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