I Have A Notion blog and store have moved to:

the store can be found at

There is a much easier to navigate store, with new items. The blog has its own page as well... new content too.

The blog is now at

Please come and visit!

Monday, June 22, 2009

"MJ's Bag Tag" Tutorial by Kelly Jackson

I remember promising some readers that I would post a tutorial about making Bag Tags. That was months ago. Well....I finally did it. Being a visual learner I probably took way too many pictures. For those of you who only require a few, hang in there! :)

The pattern was designed by my dear friend Mary Jane.

You will need:
- Timtex
-Fabric 3 1/2 x 12 inches
-Fabric Strip 14 inches by 1 7/8 (if you are using the binding machine otherwise use the width you prefer)
-Clear Plastic 2 1/2 x 4 1/4 inches - you can get this at Wal Mart (if they have fabric) or JoAnn's.

Timtex cut 2 1/2 x 11 inches

Fold Timtex  in half

Cut the tips off I used the Olfa Ruler

Tips cut off

Fabric 3 1/2 x 12 inches (Amy Butler Fabric)

I use Best Press and iron my fabric. I like my fabric to be wrinkle free.

Then I cut a piece of MistyFuse just larger than my Timtex (I eyeball the measurement). It might be difficult to see in this picture but if you look closely you can see it is about 1/4 inch larger all the way around.

Then I lay my wrinkle free fabric down, put a layer of MistyFuse and then my Timtex.
I trim the corners of the fabric off - freehand-does not need to be exact.

I'm using "The Applique Pressing Sheet" because the MistyFuse does not stick to it. I flipped the fabric sandwich(fabric, MistyFuse, Timtex) over and pressed. I used "Hot Stuff Harriet" because she does not steam :) I love her....heavy and cheap ($3.00)

Now I flip it over and press the sides in first. Next, I press down the ends. The extra MistyFuse is not visible here (it is wonderfully thin and leaves you fabric soft not stiff) but that is what holds the fabric in place. No need to use more or cut more it is already there.
Then I press in the "ears"

I fold it in half and press again.

This is how I make my straps. You can use fabric to match, coordinate or clash :) You can also use ric rac or ribbon (anything your heart desires:)

I use my new Bias Tape Maker to make the straps. I cut my fabric 14 x 1 7/8 inches. You can do it the old fashion way and fold your fabric in half, then fold the edges in and press. You can use the Bias Tape tools by Clover too. What ever works for you. This is just how I do it.

I feed it around the roller (I usually make 4 or more at the same time so I make lots of bias tape and I don't cut it on the bias because it is only being used for tag straps)

Just lay the fabric over the roller.

I cut it on an angle so it fits through the tip easier.

I use my Awl aka "Pokey Tool" to get my fabric through evenly. You don't have to...I just do...

As soon as it is fed through I remove the top of the Bias Tape Maker

Top Removed....fabric comes across the plate and over the end roller.

Note: you need to get the fabric over the end roller.

Replace the top, turn it on-it heats up very quickly. (this picture was taken out of order. I take mine off first before feeding it but I also turn mine on and do it carefully. If you follow my can get burned....YIKES. Danger Will Robinson!!!!

Waaaahhhhhh have bias tape :)

Subliminal message: Do not see the mess in the not see the mess in the not see the mess in the background.....

I fold it in half and stitch down both sides.

The stitches should be even....often my boys are playing next to me and I'm talking to them and not watching what I'm doing exactly. Then you get a wobbly line....I'm not thinking the bag handlers will you?

I tuck my strap in half and edge the tips down into the Bag Tag about 1/2 inch.

The next few pictures relate to the cutting of the plastic. This is just how they got uploaded....You can cut your plastic at the same time you cut your fabric.

Because I had such a hard time seeing the edge of my plastic when I cut it I use these Q Tools Cutting Edge Strips on the edge. You can see here that I place it on the edge of my roll of plastic.

Now I can see where I'm cutting. This just makes it easier for my. You might not have a hard time seeing the plastic. I have these strips for my rulers and they are re-usable so I use them on my plastic too.

Back to the Bag Tag Sewing

First I stitch right along the edge of the strap securing it in place. I usually go forward and backward and forward again. This secures the strap into the Bag Tag.

Just as I turn to come down the side I place my plastic on top of the Bag Tag. It is a little difficult to see here but that is what I've done. I use my walking foot because it glides over the plastic and does not get stuck. I've used my 1/4 inch foot and it sticks to the plastic.

I continue stitching all the way around and then clip my threads. Then I put a business size card behind the plastic.

You can make an assembly line to make several tags at once. They make really great gifts. Everyone I've ever given them to has told me how much they appreciate them. I put them on my boy's back packs for school, lunch boxes, gym bags and my luggage. I have made them in smaller sizes for gift tags and then they can use them for their bags afterwards.

This tutorial took quite a bit of time to do the pictures, upload them, write out the tutorial etc etc etc. I did not share the pattern (which took MJE time to create) without her permission. I ask that you not copy my instructions without my permission. The pattern and instructions are being shared freely and not intended for sale or profit.

If you get stuck or need more information feel free to e-mail me at If you need any of the items used to make Bag Tags check out

I would love to see your Bag Tags. If you make some please, please, please send me pix to share.



  1. Thanks for a great tutorial Kelly...just got to track down Timtex or something similar here in Oz. Found some Fast2Fuse stuff but its $32 a metre...agghhh...hugs Khris

  2. Lordy! That's a great that little binding machine. Beautiful tag...can't wait to see more of your goodies.

  3. Thanks for all the pictures. I am the one who needs all the visuals :-)

  4. Wow, this is fabulous! I would love to link to this if you didn't mind.

  5. Love this!!!! Im ready to go on vacation now!

  6. what a great idea for your plastic. also, if you are sewing it on and finding it catches too much, get some tear away and put it on top, makes it run in the machine so smooth!

  7. Great tutorial! Thanks so much.

  8. Thank you so much for sharing this tutorial, it's terrific!

  9. Very interesting tutorial. I've always wanted cute luggage tags. You've inspired me to make some.

    Thank you!


  10. This is wonderful. It looks like something I just may try. Thank you. I love your blog. Thanks again for a great tutorial. ~ Yaya

  11. Wow...great tutorial. My guild has a fund raiser auction every year..this would be a neat and useful item to make to include in auction baskets...everyone travels...THANKS..
    Ann...San Diego

  12. Thank you! This is a great tutorial. My mother and I travel four or five times a year so this is the perfect stocking stuffer for both of us! I will post a link on my blog as well to send readers your way. ~Kelly

    unDeniably Domestic

  13. Very nice! Thank you for sharing this! :)

  14. thanks a lot for this great tutorial ! It must have taken ages to take the pictures and download them ... I've made a nice cover for my passport (being a flight attendant, I use it a lot !), and I was looking for a nice pattern for a bag tag ...
    My own blog is in french, please visit, even if you don't speak french !

    thanks !

  15. just discovered your blog. I have just printed out the Bag Tag tutorial. Thank's for sharing

  16. Oh, so THAT's how it's done! Sew Easy! And how pretty they are! Thanks for sharing your talents!!!

  17. Thank you so much for this tutorial! I am also a visual learner so I appreciate all your pictures ... no notice of background activities :) ... I will be back to check in with your blog regularly.


Thank you for reading the IHAN Blog. I love getting and reading every comment that is left here; however I may not be able to respond to all comments left during giveaways. There are times when I am juggling many tasks at one time and may not reply to all comments. Please e-mail me at if you need a reply quickly. I thank you for your understanding and-
More Later-Beth


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...