“Little Pieces” Toy Sack…..a great place to store all those teeny pieces!

 

My oldest, Elli, is turning 6 on the 2oth.  Have I ever told you her real name is Elliana?  (Pronounced: Ell-ee-on-uh)  I met a lady at Joann’s the other day, and her daughter’s name was Elliana, spelled the same way.  It’s not very common…..so I was surprised that this lady even spelled hers the same way.  By the way, what were we thinking giving her such a hard name to pronounce?!?!  The doctor/dentist/school mostly pronounce it Elaina, if they are reading it.  Almost every time.  Ha!  And I have a degree in Elementary Ed degree…….I know how hard it is when a kid has a hard name to pronounce when reading it from the role.  Ooops! ;) 

 

Woah……big ol’ tangent.  Back to Miss Elli’s birthday. 

 

She’s turning 6.  And all she wants is “Littlest Pet Shop” stuff.  (And a Pinata!)  I kinda thought she was over the Pet Shop stuff.  But…..that’s all she can talk about.  OK then.  You got it.  However……..remember how there’s about a trillion little pieces?!!  When I buy something like that for a gift, I can’t help but think of all those little pieces getting lost.  That’s why last year I made those clear plastic toy bags.  Remember these?

 

 

 

Yeah, those are awesome too.  But I remembered this morning that I really needed to make a quick toy bag for these Pet Shop toys before her little party on Saturday.  And I don’t have any vinyl……nor any time to go buy some.  Plus, I wanted to make something that took even less time.  So I just made her a simple little cinched-up sack (that measures 11 x 11 inches):

 

 

You know……..for all of those itty bitty little sure-to-get-lost pieces.

 

 

 

She adores these little things.  And asks to watch little commercials online, selling these pets, so that she can get another peek at them.

 

 

 

So, this sack is perfect for them.  And is easy to open and close.  And is personalized…….just for her!

 

 

 

 

And yeah, I guess they’re kinda cute……but I’m not sure why she’s so obsessed with them.  Is it just an age thing?  Any other 6ish year old’s out there, who are ga-ga over these little plastic animals with HUGE heads/eyeballs?!?!

 

 

 

If you don’t have “pet” collectors at home……I’m sure you have legos, barbie clothes, army men, tea sets, etc.  Need a quick sack for them? 

 

 

 

Or wait, you don’t have kids at home?  I’m SURE you have colored pencils, glue sticks, clothes pins, buttons, etc……just laying around.  Maybe you need a little sack to tidy up that junk drawer where you keep stashing stuff!  Ha……caught you! ;)

 

Anyway, we bought Elli a little tree house that her little animals can play in…..but I know they’re going to fall right out of it when she’s not playing with it. At least now, I don’t have to worry about where she’s going to store them. 

 

 

 

Whew.  Check that off the get-ready-for-Elli’s-bday-party list!!

 

 

Would you like to make one too?

 

 My little ‘Toy Sack’ ended up measuring about 11 inches wide and 11 inches tall.  But really, you could make this any ol’ size.  But if you want to make this exact size, here’s how:

 

All you need, is 4 pieces of fabric……and a little ribbon (not pictured).  Cut the pieces like shown below.

***Fabric is Riley Blake Designs, HAPPIER

 

Then, if you want to add lettering to the fabric, you can use fabric paint, iron on fusible vinyl (which is what I used on this bag, using my Silhouette craft cutter), or sew on some fabric letters.  Whatever you choose, do so before moving on.

 

Then sew the middle sized rectangle (mine is blue polka) down to one of the large rectangles, 4 inches from the bottom and centered right and left.  Sew about an 1/8 of an inch from the edge, all the way around.  Then sew the smallest rectangle down into the center of the middle sized one, sewing around the edges the same way.  (If the fabric frays a bit, no worries.  It just adds to the charm.)

 

Then serge (or zig-zag) around the edges of the two large rectangle pieces.

 

Then, place the two pieces together, with right sides together, and sew all the way around the bottom and 2 sides (using a 1/4 inch seam allowance).  But stop 2 inches from the top on both sides.

 

Then, looking at the side seams from the “wrong” side of the fabric, fold over the opening edges a 1/4 inch towards the “wrong” side and sew in place.

 

Then turn over to the “right” side of the fabric and sew a narrow zig-zag stitch right below this 2 inch long opening.  Do the same to both sides of the sack.

 

Then, while the sack is inside out, fold the top edge down 1 inch, then sew in place, right along the very bottom edge.

 

Now, you can leave your sack just how it is……..or you can box out the bottom a bit, so that it will sit up a little better.  To do so, there are more pictures to describe the process at my large tote tutorial.  Measure 1.5 inches from the top point and sew your line of stitching.

 

Do the same to the other corner…..then turn right side out and iron your seams flat.

 

For your pull strings……..you can sew up a tube of fabric, use cording, or find some ribbon like I did.  You’ll need 2 pieces that are equal in length.  For more info on stringing it through, visit my fishy purse tutorial.

 

Then knot the ends.

 

And that’s it.  Hooray!

 

Now, bag up those itty bitty toy parts and appreciate having a little “home” for them!

 

 

 

-Ashley

 

 

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Comments

76 Responses to ““Little Pieces” Toy Sack…..a great place to store all those teeny pieces!”
  1. 1
    Alice S says:

    Ashley–Your projects are always so awesome and so pertinent to me. ( I have kids about the same ages as yours. Mine are 11, 9, 6 and 18 months.) I chuckled when I saw you had an elem. ed degree. Me too! Your blog is always the first one I read when you post (I have it in my Google Reader) because I’m sure the project is relevant! Love your writing style, too. I think our personalites and tastes are the same; I feel like we’re pals. I’d love to meet you in real life or have you as my neighbor! (Any trips planned to Michigan?:-D ) Just thought I’d share… P.S. LOVE the fabric on this bag? What is it?

    • 1.1
      Ashley says:

      Haha……how funny! I’ll be your pal any day! :) So you can understand the hard to pronounce name thing, then, right?? :)

      And hmmmm, I lived in Ann Arbor for a summer when I was 20. Does that count? :)

      I just posted the name of the fabric in the post too, so thanks. It’s Riley Blake Designs, HAPPIER.

      Enjoy your day!
      Ashley

      • 1.1.1
        Alice S. says:

        Yes–We have an Alana (Uh-LAY-nuh). We tried to spell it as close to the pronunciation as possible, but it still gets mispronounced. Oh well, when I tell people my name is Alice they turn around and call me Alison. So I think we all get it at some point.

  2. 2
    Shantel says:

    It’s been a long time since I really looked at one of your tutorials, I forgot how detailed they are and so easy to understand! Thanks for all the work you put into them!

  3. 3
    Jessica Allison says:

    This is really cute! I have a little boy, but I’m thinking a travel bag for Thomas might be in order…. Thanks for sharing!
    Jessica

  4. 4
    Marcia W says:

    So cute! What did you use to print the personalization on the bag?

  5. 5
    Lynette says:

    This would be great for an easy gift wrapping if you’re giving a whole bunch of things. Just stick it in a personalized bag and there ya go!

  6. 6
    Whitney says:

    We’re in the process of adopting an Aliona (Al-ee-oh-na) and while it’s super common in her home country (Russia), it’s proving to be a mystery here. Couple that with the aunt named Allie and the dog named Ellie and I’m sure we’ll have a nickname down the road. Did you ever think of calling Elli something else like Lee or Ona?

  7. 7
    leigh7911 says:

    We named our kid Eowyn (A-oh-win). Her teachers are going to hate us.

    Cute bag! The aforementioned kid is only 4, so no toys like that just yet, as I have put a great amount of effort into avoiding them. But when the inevitable occurs, there will be drawstring bags everywhere, I’m sure.

    • 7.1
      Hannah says:

      LOVE that name! Could be the LOTR buff in me :) If I’d thought my husband would go for it at all, one of our daughters would be named Eowyn.

  8. 8

    My daughter’s name is Eliana too!! We also call her Ellie. Happy birthday to your sweet girl! :)

    • 8.1
      Megan Simmons says:

      Same here! My daughter is 2.5 and I thought it wasn’t a very common name. But now we are starting to hear it more and more. Happy Birthday to Elli!

    • 8.2
      Karen says:

      My 2.5 year old son was initially named Eliana in utero after an incorrect prenatal gender test. So upon learing his true identity then we named him Eli. He is always called “Elli” at any doctor’s office we’ve ever taken him to though.

  9. 9
    Delynn says:

    Funny, I was obsessed (not kidding) with petshops when I was Elli’s age. However the old ones were a lot more proportional. My mom still has them we are excited for our Claire to be old enough to play with them. :) Love the bag too!!

  10. 10
    Marli Batten says:

    Its funny what we call our kids. We tried not to make it too difficult for our children (or so we thought!) My llittle girl is called Lizbeth (Lizzy for short) and it amazes me how many people turn around and says “Oh! Elizabeth?” No just Lizbeth please don’t add two extra syllables to her name!!

    Thanks for all your great Tutorials! I check your blog all the time! You are my ‘to go to’ when I want or have to make something, I have even refered my mum to your site to make my kids some of the novelty pillows. Thanks!

  11. 11

    I always wondered what her actual name was.. there areso many ways to spell it. My daughter is Eliannah (el-ee-ah-nah ). I love the name, she gets elli or el for short sometimes but still mostly gets eliannah by us! :-)

  12. 12

    Happy Birthday ELLINA. Im a senior grandmother and you have a beautiful name. I like your toy bag and hope to do up a few for this XMAS. Thank you for the darling idea. I donate so I need to make up my mind on a NAME??? A fabric pen to give with it? Put BOY or GIRL on? GrandmaSue

  13. 13
    Darci says:

    I made a zipper pouch for our LPS. My oldest turns 8 tomorrow and her sister ( almost 5) chose to give her a LPS play set for her bday

  14. 14
    Miss M! says:

    My four year old SON is totally into these. It’s hilarious to me to go into his room full of Hot Wheels, Legos, and Thomas trains to see these pastel pet houses and little accessories dotted through the mess.

    And for the record, I had no problem with reading the correct pronunciation of your daughter’s name. Maybe it’s more common where I live in AZ or because I speak Spanish so it comes naturally?

  15. 15
    Hannah says:

    Ellianna was one of the names that made it on the short list of names for our first daughter. At the last minute, we decided to go with Annakate instead. Our second daughter is Arianna and NOBODY pronounces it correctly :) We pronounce it Airy-on-uh.

  16. 16
    Craftyness says:

    I’m so glad you did this tutorial! Thank thank thank you! I’ve been looking for one and this makes it so easy. I love how you make the red marks of wear to stitch and for the ribbon. Genius.

  17. 17
    Lisa says:

    Love this! Legos are EVERYWHERE at our house! Would you ever consider posting a tutorial on making what would amount to a playmat that spread out on the floor with the drawstrings to close it all up when the kids are done playing? I came across one online but it wasn’t the most detailed. I KNOW I could follow your directions! :)

    • 17.1
      Jeannine says:

      That’s a great idea!
      Hey Ashley, an idea for how to put it in a bag would be to make the playmat, on the back put a pocket on the top edge thats 1/3 of the width wide, and maybe about 1/3 of the playmat long. With the mat facing upwards, you would fold the left and right sides to the center, then fold the bottom upwards. Then flip the whole shebang inside out, like you would with a pair of socks. Nice and flat. I’ve seen fleece blankets made with the same concept.
      Sorry to leave you with working out the actual details, Ashley. Too close to Christmas for me to take on any more crafting things, but I can’t wait til after New Year, when I’ll have more breathing space…I hope!

  18. 18
    Diana says:

    We have a Camon (pronounced “Cay-mun” just like Cayman Islands) and I had no idea how hard it would be for people to remember, much less pronounce! It means “resurrection” which we loved, and it doesn’t have any weird combinations of letters, and it’s close to popular names like Caden and Cameron, but yeah…no one gets it :)

    And I may just have to make one of these bags soon because Camon’s blocks bag is getting holes in it. Thanks so much for this–I love that it’s easy and I wouldn’t have to deal with vinyl. (But those bags are adorable too!)

  19. 19
    Christina E. says:

    Those are very cute bags! I may have to make a few for my children. They are about to turn 4 and 5, so we have just recently been inducted to the small-toy-parts-all-over club. Thank you for the tutorial.
    Happy Birthday Elli! I have a daughter named Eliana, and we also call her Ellie (especially for those that can’t seem to grasp the pronunciation). My husband chose her name. At first I wanted something a little simpler like Elena, but Eliana grew on me. It was a beautiful choice. I told him before she was born that people were going to call her Elaina by accident, and sure enough, at her first doctor’s appt that’s how they read it off the chart! I think there are much harder names out there, though. :) My name is Christina and I still have to spell it out for people because of all of the variations out there.

  20. 20
    Amanda says:

    My daughter, Rachel, turned 6 in October. She loves her littlest pet shop toys. She plays with them all the time and anytime we are in a store that sells them she begs to go to the toy isle so ogle the latest little animals. I made her a bag from fabric that has the littlest pet shop animals print hoping they’d stay in there…but, they still manage to get every where. Luckily, I haven’t stepped on one yet.

  21. 21
    Anna says:

    Cute bags! I love the new look of your website! Great colors, and I love the little hearts!

  22. 22
    Allison says:

    Hey
    Just wanted to say I have an Ellie and her actual real name is Eleonora (el-e-o-nora! pronounced as written) but people are always getting it wrong! the weirdest being Geonora!!
    Anyhoo this is a fab tutorial thank you so much!
    Have a great Christmas and best wishes for the New year! xx

  23. 23
    Kellie says:

    My 7 year old son loves LPS! Second only to his love for Monster High Dolls. He also likes to watch the ads and collector’s videos on YouTube. I definitely need to whip one of these bags up!

  24. 24
    Sophie says:

    Elliana is very easy to prononce in French! Joyeux anniversaire!

  25. 25
    Anonymous says:

    I had all your kids’ names figured out from reading some of the oldest posts. Even Elli’s real name.
    This bag is so cute. Especially the fabric!! I used to have littlest pet shop when I was 6!

  26. 26
    Cindi says:

    I have a 7 year old who loves LPS! And I love Ellianna’s name. It was actually one that we tossed around when we thought our son was a girl. I couldn’t convince my husband but had I been able to and had the ultrasound tech been right, I would have had a Chloe and an Ellianna as well!!

  27. 27
    Kelly says:

    THANK YOU for this tutorial!! I have been on a small toy-bag making binge and the ones I’m currently making are very similar to this but I’ve been complicating the process of the drawstring area. So THANK YOU again!!

  28. 28
    Karyn says:

    So cute! I love your toy bags! My 12 year old STILL loves LPS! (I was hoping we could be done with them!)
    My daughter’s name is Noelle, and although people can pronouce it ok, they can’t seem to remember it because everyone calls her Nicole!

  29. 29
    Kristin says:

    I had to laugh at the name issue…I taught elementary school for 4 years and had such a difficult time with some of those creative names! Elli’s isn’t anywhere close to some of the crazy ones I saw! So my two kids each have a very easy to pronounce correctly name. I love the tutorial…finally someone who takes care of those raw edges at the top! (And I always tell my mom that if she gives my kids toys with pieces, it better come with a drawstring bag. She is always happy to oblige!) Now I have no excuse not to make them myself…

  30. 30
    Sarah Harwood says:

    This just made me laugh. Our 7 m.o. is also named Elliana. We are just now starting to call her Ellie more. I find it funny that you think the name you choose is less common but once you name your child you start to see it everywhere. I live in Texas so people don’t have much trouble pronouncing it. But I also have a Brynna and they never get hers right.

  31. 31
    Amy says:

    Great tutorial! And I have to say I was an avid pet shop fan as a kid and they were much cuter back then. Normal heads and eyes :) I can’t wait to wrap them up and give them to my girl when she gets a tad older. So glad I saved them!

  32. 32
    Destynee says:

    I have 2 daughters, ages 11 and 8, who have collected and played with LPS for about 3-4 years. Although I disliked them at first because of the disproportioned body parts, I know now that they are a guaranteed “YAY!” kind of gift. Each of my girls have over 100 pets each, along with accessories, houses, etc., so it’s possible that your Elli has many more years of being obsessed! About the name – mine is Destynee and we named our oldest girl Destynee as well. I can’t even begin to tell you ALL the names I have been called (everything from Stephanie to Bethany to Desiree to Dynasty), but I still wouldn’t change my name!

  33. 33
    Sara H says:

    I should make one for my art stuff, so much I need to take to school I always forget half of it!
    Plus the name thing, I’m Sara, but I’m British and live in London, so should be pronounced sar-uh (like zara but with an s)
    I get called so many stupid things, zara, Sarah, siera, saran, always telling my parents they gave me a stupid name haha!
    Oh, we’ll at least it’s unique, never met another person who pronounces it like me

  34. 34
    Colorcrazed says:

    My great granddaughter would love these sacks to keep all her dollhouse pieces in.

    COLORCRAZED

  35. 35
    Katrina says:

    I have vintage Littlest Pet Shops from when I was a kid. :) They are at my parents and my little sister used to play with them.

  36. 36
    Jennifer says:

    My daughter just turned six a week ago and I took your advice and made her a matching skirt with her knock off 18-inch doll. This bag is a perfect idea for Christmas, though. She has moved on from the pets to the Polly Pockets. Even more tiny accessories.

  37. 37
    Bonnie P says:

    Wondering if you can tell me what the toys are called? I think my grand daughter would like them. She will be one January 1st :)

  38. 38
    Anonymous says:

    Elliana is a very common Hebrew name. It means “God Answered” – sometimes people choose it when their daughter was not easy to produce :-)

    • 38.1
      Ashley says:

      Oh wow, that makes sense. I first heard the name from my college roommate, who used to babysit a little girl named Elliana. And I remember asking her where the name came from and she wasn’t sure……she just mentioned the family was Jewish. Interesting!

      • 38.1.1
        Lisa says:

        That’s crazy! I have an Elliana as well, and we call her Elli most of the time. She just turned 9 in November. Hardly anyone had ever heard the name before, but now I have seen a few popping up. :( I love the name meaning…I have never been able to find the meaning of Elliana before. And it fits totally perfect since we struggled with infertility for 3 years before getting pregnant with her!

  39. 39
    Michal says:

    You’re kidding! I always wondered what your Elli was short for. Do you know what it means? Just as you pronouce it – it is Hebrew for “my G-d” (Eli) “answered” (ana). And it’s a beautiful name – for a beautiful girl, too!

    • 39.1
      Ashley says:

      How interesting…..I was just mentioning above that I first heard the name from my college roommate who babysat for a little Jewish girl names Elliana. I loved it and wanted my first girl to be named Elliana. What’s even more interesting, is that before Elli was born, we had a miscarriage and were heart broken. We prayed and prayed to have a healthy pregnancy, so truly, God answered. I love that! :)

      • 39.1.1
        Adina says:

        I was just going to post to you asking if you knew the hebrew meaning. I quickly read through to see if anyone else mentioned it. It really is such a powerful name. May god always answer your prayers.
        Since it is such a meaningful name and sounds so beautiful too, it became a pretty common name here in Israel (where I live).
        Happy birthday to her.

      • 39.1.2
        Michal says:

        Wow! Perfect! Yes, it’s definitely a popular Jewish name. I feel naming my kids is so meaningful. My you always be blessed. It’s a pleasure watching little Elli grow these years. Happy Birthday Elliana! :-)

  40. 40
    Holly says:

    She may have seen the commercial for the new Littlest Pet Shop tv show on the HUB. My daughter found out about the show while playing My Little Pony online and is now crazy about them.

  41. 41
    Sarah says:

    Such a good idea to have labeled bags for small parts. Then there is no discussion about what goes where. Recently, I made a tote for my son’s loose castle playset pieces with a freezer paper stenciled outline of a castle on it. For non-readers, pictures make great labels. I also love using the trick of giving it to the little one as “their bag for ___” and letting their toddler possessiveness drive them to keep the pieces together. Gotta play to their strengths!

    PS – the naming story for your daughter is just lovely. I just love meaningful names.

  42. 42
    ellobie says:

    If you plan a little farther ahead and make the cinch ribbons just a smidge longer, you can sew their ends into the bottom of the sack, making it a little backpack!

  43. 43
    Penelope says:

    Did you know that I was planning on making storage bags this morning? Our issue right now is polly pocket types.

    A dear friend of ours named her daughter Iliana. So we are familiar with it. Both versions are just beautiful in my opinion.

    And not a single teacher could say my name correctly when I was in school either, even though it is classic Greek literature AND there was a cartoon out with the same name. I still love my name….we give our children these names knowing they will grow up and fill them.

  44. 44
    Tamara says:

    Um yeah, littlest pet shop was my daughters favorites from age 5 to 10 (she’s 13 now and still secretly loves them!) We had a ton of the sets- then sold them all on ebay, to which she got the Proceedes, which I also regret because now I have another little girl who is two who loves them now!

  45. 45
    kaja says:

    thank you, I’m an absolute beginner :) and this is perfect for me

  46. 46
    Jenna says:

    Is this made with “plain old cotton” or something sturdier?

    I too played with te original LPS, and I agree they were much cuter then!

  47. 47
    Kimberly says:

    Cute sack! My almost 9 year old loves her LPS toys. Still. So I think your daughter is just like the other little girls her age. I don’t know that I get it either but at least they are cheap.

  48. 48

    Love this! I found you on pinterest and am currently blogging about this little project and how wonderful your tutorial is!

  49. 49
    Tomingo says:

    Too cute thanks for sharing.
    Mingz Eclectic Creations

  50. 50
    Angela says:

    Love this! Going to make a few of these today for my daughter’s pets and also her mini My Little Ponies. Thanks so much for making & sharing such awesome tutorials!!

  51. 51
    Ramona K says:

    Thank you so much for this tutorial. I am the type of person that needs visuals to be able to sew and you did such a good job. I am making Birthday bags for Moulton school here in Des Moines Iowa. I belong to Church Women United which is made up of different churches city wide. Each church takes a month at the school to celebrate birthdays.

  52. 52

    Very good blog post. I certainly appreciate this site.

    Thanks!

  53. 53
    Mary Anne says:

    Ashley!

    I think this may be it!!! I have been trying to decide what to make as gifts for my daughter’s castmates for nutcracker this year, and I think I will elongate this sack to hold ballet shoes and make it as a gift out of nutcracker fabric! Thanks so much for the tutorial! :)

    Mary Anne

  54. 54
    Caroline says:

    I am a very inexperienced seamstress (with some curtains, a pillowcase, and a blanket successfully under my belt.) To practice my beginner sewing skills, I am making reusable Christmas bags. I am combining this pattern with your large tote tutorial so that I can line the bags and make peeking harder. I really appreciate the many pictures and step by step instructions. Thank you for sharing newbie-friendly ideas.

  55. 55
    Kelsey says:

    Love the bags, and I have a daughter named Elliana too.

  56. 56
    Cheryl says:

    Just made one for my son’s Legos. super simple to make!! thank you for the details and pictures!!

  57. 57
    canon says:

    Awesome idea! However–would I be absolutely insane to attempt doing this for each child in an orphanage in our local town? If I get started now I may finish by christmas :) 68 kids–whew!

  58. 58
    Grandma C says:

    This idea also works as a way to upcycle T-shirts. Make using the logo/design as a part of the design or use the back.

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