How to Sew a Sea Shell Bag

She sells sea shells by the seashore. We all know that but how does she go about collecting those sea shells? My guess is her mom made her a sea shell bag so she’d have 2 hangs free to collect shells as she walks down the shore in pocketless bathing suit. You only need to know how to sew in a straight line to be able to make one of these versatile Sea Shell Bags


Mesh or Net – 21 x 10.5
Fabric – 2 pieces –  9 x 10.5
Webbing – 1 yard
Sew on Velcro – 3.5″
1/2″ double-sided bias tape – 1 package or 1 yard
Pins, Rotary cutter or scissors, ruler, thread, sewing machine, iron

Start with your 2 smaller pieces of fabric laying with the bottom (long) edges facing together. This will be the inside of your bag. Separate your velcro and pin them about 3 inches from the edge of the fabric, making sure they are aligned.

Sew the velcro onto the fabric by sewing the edges and then making an X in the middle. Repeat on the other piece of fabric.

Take both pieces to the ironing board. Fold each piece in half the long way so you now have 4.5″x10.5″ and press. Open the fabric, press a 1/4″ seam, fold and press another 1/4″ seam. Repeat on all the 10.5″ sides (4 times all together).

Open up your 4.5″x10.5″ fabric and lay your mesh or net down with about a 1/2-1 inch overlap, close fabric, and pin into place.

At your sewing machine, sew using a zig zag stitch to sandwich the mesh in the fabric. The 1/2 – 1 inch overlap should insure that all pieces catch.

Repeat on other side. You now have 1 long piece of fabric and mesh.

Fold your fabric in half, velcro sides facing out.

Measure out your bias tape by cutting 2 pieces the exact length of the sides of your fabric mesh combo. Now comes the only slightly tricky part, sewing the bias tape onto the fabric and mesh. Every time I have to sew bias tape I have to refer to this amazing tutorial from Pretty Prudent. Once you’ve sewn on your bias tape, flip the bag right side out (so the bias tape is inside the body of the bag).

Again, because you are dealing with mesh or net it is important to use a zig-zag type stitch to capture everything within the bias tape.

Give yourself a big ole high five because you are almost done! The only thing left to do is attach the webbing (belt material) to the fabric. You can choose to sew the webbing to the inside or the outside of the bag. Here I’ve chose to sew it to the inside. Place the end of the webbing about 2 inches inside the bag and attach it the same way you did the velcro – stitching around the edge and then making an X.

The last step is to repeat all the other steps because you can’t make just one of these! You can embroider them, embellish them, add ribbon or special trims. 
Happy shelling!!


  1. says

    great idea!!! Wish I would have seen this before vacation 2 weeks ago. :( We carried sand buckets around which worked but these bags would have worked so much better. Pinning for next vacation!

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