Big Bad Bucket Bag Pattern

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Summer is around the corner which will mean quick road trips are in my future.  Since I don’t enjoy lugging suitcases everywhere I go, I like to use an easy to carry oversized bucket bag.

Big oversized bucket bag is perfect for overnight visits and trips to the beach. Free pattern download. The Sewing Loft

This project is for all levels.

Skill Level- 1 1/2 Buttons

1 plus buttons


  • Main fabric: 3/4 yard
  • Lining fabric: 3/4 yard
  • Contrast fabric: 1/3 yard
  • Fusible fleece: 3/4 yard
  • Interfacing: 1/3 yard
  • Bucket Bag Template

*Basic sewing supplies and machine are needed to complete this project.

Prep Work:

  • Gather supplies.  I used the whimsical Wildflower collection from Adornit!
  • Start by downloading the bucket bag pattern.  Print, cut and tape template together; overlapping where needed.

Bucket Bag by The Sewing Loft for The Ribbon Retreat

Cut fabric to create the bucket bag. Here are the measurements:

  • Bag bottom (cut 1 of main fabric, 1 of lining and 1 of fusible fleece) use pattern template.
  • Side (cut 1 of main fabric, fusible fleece and 1 of lining) 13 1/2″ x 40″ rectangle
  • Pocket (cut 2 in contrast fabric) 8″ x 9 1/2″ rectangle
  • Pocket trim (cut 1 in lining fabric) 8″ x 1 1/2″ rectangle
  • Straps (cut 2 contrast fabric and 2 interfacing) 5″ x 34″ rectangle

Bucket Bag Free Pattern by The Sewing Loft for The Ribbon Retreat

*To add body to bag, I suggest applying a fusible fleece to main fabric before cutting.  Follow instructions provided by the manufacturer.

  • To mark gather placement on bucket sides, fold fabric to the center (bookend style fold) and mark 3″ from each side. This is your gather/basting start and stop point.  Stitch two rows of large basting stitches from dot to dot.  Be sure to leave long thread tails for later.  Repeat this on both lining and main fabric. Set aside.

Bucket Bag Free Pattern by The Sewing Loft for The Ribbon Retreat


  • Position pocket trim 1″ below top edge of pocket.  Layer right sides together and stitch in place.  Turn and press trim up; edge stitch with coordinating thread.

Pocket detail on Bucket Bag by The Sewing Loft


  • Sandwich between 2 layers of pocket top edge.  Straight stitch together. Open and press trim to one side of pocket.  **Tip: Back stitch seam allowance to pocket lining. This will create a nice clean edge to fold back and press. Small steps like this will elevate your project from home-made to handmade.

Pocket detail on Bucket Bag by The Sewing Loft

  •  Sandwich pocket lining to pocket face; all around straight stitch leaving the bottom edge open.  Press, clip corners on a 45 degree angle and turn right side out. Press again and position on front of bag.  Straight stitch along pocket sides.  Consider adding a dog ear triangle for reinforcement.

Pocket detail on Bucket Bag by The Sewing Loft

  • Match the short ends of bucket bag sides; right sides together and stitch.  Press seam allowance open. Consider trimming away fusible fleece to reduce bulk.  Top stitching with coordinating thread. Match bag side to the bottom of bucket.  Gently pull long thread tails of gathering stitch as needed to fit snuggly around curved base of bag.  Pin all around and stitch in place.

Bucket Bag by The Sewing Loft

  • The process is repeated to create the lining with one exception. You will need to leave a 6″ opening along the short side of lining seam. This is to allow for turning later.
  • Layer interfacing to the wrong side of strap. Fold in half to create a long triangle and stitch together. Turn and press seam in the center. To reduce bulk on my shoulders, I like to fold the center of straps in half and stitch.  To do this, find the center and mark length. I used 10″. Fold in half and edge stitch closed.

Bucket Bag Straps by The Sewing Loft

Bucket Bag by The Sewing Loft

  • Position handles 10″ apart on center and 2″ below top edge.  Straight stitch in place.  Fold up and add top stitching to secure.  Repeat to other side.

Bucket Bag by The Sewing Loft

  • Let’s assemble!! Slip the right side of bucket bag into the lining. (right sides will kiss)  Stitch all along top edge.  This is why that opening is so important in the lining! Back stitch your seam allowance to the lining side of bag.
  • Turn right side out and press. *Remember, pressing is super important! Pin straps in place and top stitch along top edge in coordinating color thread.

Bucket Bag by The Sewing Loft

  • Stitch up your lining and add a few hand tacking stitches along the bottom of bag to secure lining.  Phew, were done!!

Big Bag Bucket Bag

Big oversized bucket bag is perfect for overnight visits and trips to the beach. Free pattern download. The Sewing Loft

This bucket bag is really big and can carry pretty much everything you can imagine!  That’s right, you can load this baby up and become the “bag lady” you want to be!


The Sewing Loft





ps- You may have seen this bag before, I shared my bucket bag pattern on The Ribbon Retreat.

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  1. Do you think it would be terribly hard to add a few pockets inside the bag? I hate for things like hand wipes and first aid kits to be loose in the bag. I want to get to them FAST.

    • Not at all Sonya! Just add a simple patch pocket to the lining and you will be all set. Don’t forget to snap a quick picture when you are done. I would love to see it!

  2. I may have missed it, but I don’t see the finished size of the bag noted here.

  3. Hi,, Heather,

    I was able to download the template, but what about the instructions. How can I download them?

    , Laura

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