Japanese market bag

For a goodly while I’ve had a yen (pun intended 🙂 ) to make a Japanese market bag. I first saw these in Japan made from amazing fabric as one would expect, and I have finally made a first prototype.


These are easy bags to make. There are a plethora of tutorials on the web, so I won’t add to them, except to show the minor modifications I’ve made.

The first thing to know, though, is that this bag takes a surprising amount of fabric. I wanted to use up some of my scraps and I struggled to find anything long enough, which is why I’m using part of a doona/duvet cover donated to my stash by Gabi. Basically you need three times the height. I made mine 43cm high by 129cm long, which seems to be the common wisdom. This gives me three squares of 43cm. Or it would except that I didn’t add seam allowances and I lined the bag, so my bag finished up a tad smaller than I had intended.


It is still plenty big enough though.

Most of the tutorials I looked at had two short tubes rolled down the triangular handles to form the handles. I decided on one long tube which covered the join in the handle and therefore looked a bit more finished to me.


I also wanted to add a pocket. I had a bit of a guess as to where it should go and it’s finished up on the side, but at least I won’t be fossicking for my phone every time it rings!

I also added a pair of magnets at the centre of the triangle. I just like to have the sides kept together.

So next time I need to add seam allowances, find some nice upholstery fabric or, even better, some Japanese fabric, and I would use a piece of leather for the handle. This is a really quick and easy make and I am looking forward to making the next one.


5 thoughts on “Japanese market bag

  1. I’ve seen plenty of tutorials, but it always confuse me how to make the finishing… Are the fabrics sewn right to right, then turned inside out and the gap closed–then you start working from that? Any good tutorial you could suggest?

Leave a Reply