Nov 1, 2012

Tutorial: Shark bag with free pattern

It is so rewarding to see the things your dream up come together while you are sewing.  It is 1000 times more rewarding when your kids really love the things you sew.  This is one of the things.

I wanted to make my son a trick-or-treat bag for his first year trick-or-treating.   I decided on a shark to go with his pirate costume.  I sewed this bag one morning last week before he got up.  When I showed it to him after breakfast, his eyes got huge and he yelled "woah!"  He is totally in love with this shark bag!  And he filled it to the brim on Halloween night.

This bag hasn't just been a hit with my son, while we were out trick-or-treating I heard a lot of "I love that shark bag" and "what a cool trick-or-treat bag".  So I decided I needed to come up with a tutorial to share it.

This bag was great for trick-or-treating, but it would be awesome for anytime of year really, A is still having a blast with his.  It is such a fun little bag!

If you want to make your own you will need:
1/2 yard of gray fleece
1/2 yard of iron on interfacing
1/4 yard of fabric for lining
1 sheet of felt for the teeth
2 black buttons for eyes
sewing machine
Shark bag pattern you can find HERE

First print out the pattern.  Tape the body and tail pieces together where they are labeled on the pattern.  Then cut out your fabric pieces and interfacing pieces.

Iron your interfacing to the back of your shark pieces.  Put your fin pieces right sides together and sew them together along the sides.

Clip the corner close to the seam.  Turn the fins right side out and press them.

Line one of the side fins up where you want it along the right side of one of your shark part 1 pieces.  

Place the shark part 2 on top (right sides together) so the fin is sandwiched in between.  Pin along the flat side and sew them together. Repeat with your other side (make sure your fin is in the same spot on this side). Press the seams open.

Trace around the the shark on your lining fabric.  Don't trace around his tail.  Cut out two lining pieces cutting straight across where the shark tail is.

Line up your top fin where you want it on your shark (shark part 2 is the top of the shark).

Sandwich the top fin between the 2 shark sides, pin the sides together, sew around the shark leaving his mouth open.

Clip the points on the tail close to the seam and clip the angle where the tail meets the body.

Cut 2 pieces of felt that are 11" x 2".  Cut 1" teeth along one side of the strip.

Sew the teeth to the right side of the sharks mouth with the teeth pointing down.  

Cut a strip of fleece for the handle that is 3" x 14".  Fold it in half and sew along the edge.  Turn it right side out and sew down the middle.

Line the edge of the handle up with the edge of the sharks mouth on both sides and baste it in place.

Sew along the sides of your lining pieces, leave the top and bottom open.

Place your shark right side out inside of your inside out lining.  Pin the lining to the sharks mouth then sew it in place.

Turn the bag right side out through the hole in the bottom of the lining.

Sew the lining closed.

Tuck the lining inside the bag and top stitch around the sharks mouth.

Add the button eyes.  I use hot glue for mine, way faster and easier than sewing!

That's it! I hope your little one likes this bag as much as mine!


  1. This is so awesome! I think Ollie will be a shark next year so I will definitely be making!!

    1. Thanks! I love that you already have his costume for next year picked out! I started thinking about next Halloween already too :)

  2. I think any kid would be absolutely delighted to carry this Trick-or-Treat bag. Thanks for the pattern.

  3. This is great. I can't access the pattern though. Is there any way you can send it to me? Thanks.

    1. I updated the link so you should be able to print it now. I can also email it to you if you send me your email address.

  4. Thank you so much! Your instructions are so easy to follow and my little guy just LOVES his bag. It's so nice to have something else to go with his costume. I can't thank you enough.

  5. That is just so incredibly cute and creative!

  6. Hi from Brazil, Crystal. I cant access the pattern too. Can you send me to my email ? Thank you very much. :)

  7. its beautiful! ur tutorial is so good n easy to understand. just finished making one n the outcome is as good as urs. thank you so much!

  8. This comment has been removed by the author.

  9. This as a baby hat would be hilarious!
    You know what it'd look like.. shark is eating the baby noggin' lol

  10. I cannot get the pattern. can you email me a copy at Thank you!

  11. This pattern tuned out adorable. i made it to match my son's shark costume. Thanks! :)

  12. Good informative post, thanks for sharing.

  13. The beginning of the creative ideas and regardless of the certain principles being followed there it would of course bring around the positive aspects to the relevant field of visitors, looking forward to make it more stronger.

  14. My 5 year old and I browse pinterest together. I bought the shark costume, but he is so excited for this bag! Thanks for sharing your talents!!!

  15. DONE! LOVE my bag! Thank you soooo much!!! Happy Halloween

  16. Usually I can find a costume for Halloween for my daughter with no problems, but this year (she'll be 6), she decided she wanted to be Lava Girl. Of course, I could not find a finished Lava Girl costume ANYWHERE (I usually already have the costume by now because I generally would order it online.) So, I found a pattern and made her one. Talk about words I didn't even know I knew were coming out of my mouth while making it. LMAO So, since I went all out to make the costume, I figured a personalized shark bucket (to symbolize Sharkboy) would be great! Again, I could not find a completed bucket for sale anywhere! Luckily, I stumbled across your post and thought it was absolutely adorable! So I made it. I think materials cost me about $4.50 (fabric (grey fleece $1.49, red liner for inside bucket $0.50, interface layer that's NOT iron on because I don't like working with that $1.00), buttons $0.88, & felt $0.23) all at Walmart. I had thread and of course a sewing machine so those I count as free materials. The bag only took about 1 - 2 hours to do and the only part I really had trouble with was the thick fleece layers where the fins attach. My sewing machine didn't know what to do, but it was still so soft that it knocked it out easily. The bag isn't tiny either. Mine ended up about 17 inches from tallest point on mouth to lowest point on tail. The red liner where the candy will sit in is about 9 1/2 inches from lowest point from mouth to bottom of bag. I thought it would be smaller and was going to be a little disappointed in the size, but it's quite the opposite! I think it's a perfect size! Here's my finished bag and I think it would be a great accessory to a Lava Girl costume if you don't have a little boy (or girl) dressed as Sharkboy!

  17. Just made this shark for a make your own bag competition in school for my little boy, he loved being part of it and he loves his bag. I did struggle with sewing the lining in after the handle tho, I unpicked it and took one of the sides of the handle off then sewed it again but it was a good learning experience

  18. Just made this shark for a make your own bag competition in school for my little boy, he loved being part of it and he loves his bag. I did struggle with sewing the lining in after the handle tho, I unpicked it and took one of the sides of the handle off then sewed it again but it was a good learning experience

  19. Just made this in pink for my daughter. She’s going to be baby shark (yes from the song) and wanted a shark bag too. I searched and searched for one and then I came across this post! I’m in love!! Thank you!!!

  20. This is way cute! Thank you so much!


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