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How to sew a fabric tray

 This article is brought to you by Lizzsews.

This fabric tray is perfect for all of your nick-nacks, your keys, your sunglasses, or your birthday card from last year. 

After spending a bit of time, and trial and error, figuring out how I could get a fabric tray to actually stay up by itself and be rigid enough to actually be called a tray, I ended up with this pattern. 

Recommended read: How to sew a fabric tray; the quicker way


What you will need:

  • Cotton fabric
  • Iron and ironing board
  • Batting
  • Rotary cutter and cutting mat (or scissors)
  • Seam gauge or measuring tape
  • Sewing machine
  • Sewing machine thread and needle
  • Optional: pins and safety pins
  • Optional: walking foot (makes it easier to sew all three layers) or free motion quilting foot (if you’d rather quilt it than sew in the ditch)


The steps:


  • Cut two pieces of fabric and a piece of batting to 13” x 13”


Optional: you could embroider one of the pieces. 


  • ‘Sandwich’ the pieces together. With one square of fabric on the bottom, the batting in the middle and the other square of fabric on the top. With the right sides of the fabrics facing away from the batting. 


Optional but recommended: using safety pins, pin the three layers together in multiple places. 


  • ‘Stitch in the ditch’ using the walking foot, (or a normal foot too it just might cause the layers to not stitch as well together) stitch in the stitching lines of those pieces of fabric that you pieced together.


If you didn’t piece the fabric together, make up your own pattern of stitch lines. 


Optional: for this step, you could free motion quilt instead. 


  • Cut a strip of fabric 2 1/2” wide and about 65” long for the binding. Iron the strip in half with right sides facing out. 


  • Sew the binding to the ‘quilt’


Quick overview:



  • Fold the ‘quilt’ in half diagonally and mark 2 1/2” in on each side and create a line from the mark straight down. Fold the other way and repeat. 


  • Sew down each of these lines. 


  • Flip the tray so that the excess corner pieces are on the inside holding the tray sturdy and upright. 


Leave a comment below and let me know if you made this fabric tray! And don't forget to subscribe to stay up to date with all of Lizzsews new articles. See you next time!

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