DIY iPad case makes use of your scrap bin for an inexpensive project

Sep 3, 2015 at 2:30 p.m. ET

Learn how to sew a simple and stylish zippered pouch for your iPad.

You can also make them in several sizes for other uses, and they're great for giving away as gifts. The texture of leather and canvas is great for fall or winter and guys will love these too.

To make this zippered pouch, I pulled from my scrap bins, making it a free project, but if you don’t have scraps of your own you’ll just need to gather a few small items. Since new leather is so expensive, I highly recommend upcycling your leather. Visit your local thrift store and find a leather jacket in a color you like. Every thrift shop I’ve ever shopped at has plenty to choose from. Mine cost $8 and I harvested enough leather for years' worth of future craft projects. For the top fabric, try old denim or canvas.

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Start by measuring your iPad or tablet.

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Then cut your fabric accordingly.

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As with any sewing project, it’s the little details that make it look designer. I took an old belt buckle (I save everything!) and ran a scrap piece of leather through it to make a key ring or wrist strap attachment. Maybe I’ll use it and maybe I won’t but it sure does add some interest to the design! I also cut a thin strip of leather to run through the zipper pull to make it easier to grab.

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Now start sewing your fabrics together...

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... and sew the zipper in place. Notice I couldn’t wait to add my little leather zipper pull.

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Finish up sewing the sides together, and add in your buckle or d-ring attachment now.

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Trim everything up, including the zipper.

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Turn the project inside out and your case is ready to use!

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Pretty cute little attachments huh?

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These little pouches sew together so fast, so why not make a couple more in different sizes?

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A small size would be great for ear buds, cosmetics, lip balms, tiny purse essentials, mints and gum, or anything small you want to corral in your purse. A medium pouch would work for pencils & pens, mini notebooks, stamps, desk organizing (rulers, post it notes, clips, etc.), sunglasses, travel essentials, makeup or toiletries, a men's shaving kit or small tools. A larger size would be perfect for journaling/notebook supplies (paper, pens, rulers, stickers) or for separating socks or unmentionables to organize luggage when you travel.

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DIY iPad case

Supplies:

  • 10-inch cut of sturdy fabric (Mine was 7 x 18 inches to be exact, and I used a sturdy ticking stripe. I recommend canvas, denim or home dec fabric)
  • Piece of leather or faux leather for bottom of bag (Mine was 7 x 8 inches)
  • Zipper (6 inches or longer)
  • Scraps of leather for designer details and an old buckle or d-ring if you want to add a ring to attach a wrist strap or key ring

Tip: When sewing leather, a special foot for your sewing machine is very helpful. It helps the leather slide through easily. Many machines will come with this. It looks like a piece of white plastic is on the bottom of the foot. If you don’t have one and want to work with leather, you’ll want to order one. If you don't have one, try putting a piece of Scotch tape on the bottom of your regular sewing foot.

Directions: 

  1. Measure your iPad or tablet (mine is an iPad Mini) and cut your base material 1-1/2 inches wider on two sides. My iPad is 5-1/2 x 8 inches so I cut my striped material 7 x 9-1/2 inches. Cut leather on the fold the same width but as short as you’d like your bottom to be. Mine is roughly a third of the height at 3 inches tall, so I cut it on the fold at 6 inches.
  2. Sew the bottoms of the stripe material right sides together, then sew the leather piece right on top, placing it directly in the center. Leather can be topstitched right in place since it doesn’t fray.
  3. Now sew in your zipper using a zipper foot. Zipper goes right side of zipper to right side of fabric.
  4. Finish by folding right sides together and sewing up the sides, slipping in your buckle or d-ring attachment facing in, and a tag if you have one (or use a piece of ribbon).
  5. Then trim the edges and zipper ends.
  6. Turn your pouch inside out and it's ready to use.

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