A No-Zipper Pouch Tutorial - Another Christmas Gift Project

Hello.  I've been lost this past week but found again, stopping the spin in my mind with my zakka pencil pouch.

I designed this pouch in my head; thinking through ideas, erasing, rethinking, going through each step including how to sew the pieces together.  I think of new designs a lot; in the car (my husband often catches me staring; deep in thought), while watching tv, in bed before the zzz's kick in...  I wish I could say this process always work out, but I have an ever-growing crap-scrap pile to prove otherwise. sigh.

This pouch starts with a basic NO ZIPPER pouch; a method found in Japanese craft books.  I love how this simple pouch transforms to your sense of style with a few tweaks to the shape, different fabrics,  types of interfacing, embellishments, and size.

For my pouch, I changed up the shape of the flap; to mimic a cloud, wanting to add a 'cloud face' but junked that idea.  The hardest part is always picking the right fabric, settling upon linen (my fav) and a pretty fabric I purchased from etsy shop : simbiosis by julia.  You might want to take a peek at her shop and blog...she has the CUTEST pouches and fabric cases!! 

And the Pièce de résistance? ... this kawaii embroidered mouse!!

No-Zipper Pouch Tutorial- The Basics
...the best part is that the basic pouch comes together quickly; perhaps no more than an hour... 

  • Main Fabric : Cut one piece : 8 1/4" wide x 11 1/4" long
  • Lining Fabric : Cut one piece : 8 1/4" wide x 11 1/4" long
  • Interfacing : Cut one piece : 8 1/4" wide x 11 1/4" long; apply to main fabric following manufacturer's instrutions (note: I used mid weight interfacing for the zakka pouch and fusible fleece for the tutorial. The fusible fleece gives the piece structure; use either type depending on the look and feel you desire)
  • Cord : 18" long (rick rack, ribbon, leather tie, etc. )
  • Large Button
  • Embellishments (optional) (you could also do this pouch in a patchwork style)
Note : Seams are 1/4" ( I almost always use the pressure foot to sew seams; aligning edge of foot along edge of fabric; a bit more than 1/4"; either way / size is fine)

  •  Step 1 - Pin main fabric and lining, right side together, along one short edge; sew.
  • Step 2 -  Mark 3 1/4" from top on main fabric and lining; this is the flap portion 
  •  Step 3 -  Add embellishments at this time if you like (lace, ribbons, patches, etc).  Find center of main fabric; mark for cord placement.  Place cord and baste to main fabric. 
  • Step 4 - Now for the fun part.  Tuck the bottom of the piece (where the main fabric and lining were sewn together in step 1) in between the main fabric and lining up to the 3 1/4" mark made for the flap.  This step forms the pocket.
  •  Step 5 - Pin all layers together.  Sew along left side; top (back stitch over cord to double secure); and right side (LEAVE A GAP FOR TURNING).  Do not sew the bottom.
  •  Step 7 - Sew on button. Press as needed.  This is another point in the process to add embellishments if you like.

A NO ZIPPER pencil pouch in less than 10 steps.  Change the pattern size to make cozies for your electronic devices (big and small), eye glass cases, make up bags, evening bags, casual bags, travel pouches, "envelope pouches", pencil cases, crochet hook cases,  .... did I start you thinking???

happy day ~ kat


  1. Sometimes your posts make me laugh {in a good way!}. I'm happy to learn I am not alone in coming up with full patterns & designs solely in my head. And having a pile of "it turned out like junk" pile. Thank you for sharing this tutorial because I was in need of a bag pattern! This is so cute and simple, I can't wait to give it a try.

  2. Hi Bethanee !! and you always make me happy ~~

  3. This is adorable!! I am absolutely going to use your pattern for a swap I am doing! Thanks for the awesome tutorial!!

  4. Thanks for this tutorial. I am so glad that a beginner like me following it with little modification (in size) and able to complete my very first handmade pouch.
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  5. Hey Kat, hehehe that is so super duper :D:D YAY!! I'm so so happy, thank you :D

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