Serge a Colorful Fabric Bin

FabricBin NancyZieman First

Serge a Colorful Fabric Bin

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FabricBin NancyZieman FirstSerge this fast and fun fabric bin—an ideal project for 10-inch precut fabric squares. 10-inch precuts are also known as 10-inch Stackers, Crackers, Layer Cakes, Patty-Cakes, Storybooks, and Ten Squares! If you’ve been wondering what to do with 10-inch precuts, start by selecting four 10-inch precut squares and celebrate National Serger Month with some one-on-one time with your serger.

National Serger Month is AprilBaby Lock is celebrating National Serger Monthduring the month of April, by offering over 50 projects to make with your serger. Head over to and check out the many projects designed by your favorite sewlebrities and bloggers.

The colorful fabric bin project here features decorative serger stitching, a technique that has many applications.

How to use a Serger to sew Fabric Bins by Nancy Zieman | Sewing With Nancy


  • Four 10″ precut fabric squares or two coordinating fat quarters
  • 5/8 yd Pellon ShirTailor Fusible Interfacing
  • 4-inch square Pellon Peltex One-Sided Fusible Ultra Firm Stabilizer 
  • Madeira Mouline, 100% cotton, six-strand floss, to match fabrics
  • Coordinating Thread


All seam allowances are 1/4″, unless otherwise stated.

  • From 10″ precut fabric squares, choose two squares for outer fabric and two for inner/lining fabric.
  • If you are not using 10″ precut fabric squares, cut two 10″ x 10″ squares from outer fabric, two 10″ x 10″ squares from inner/lining fabric.
  • Cut two 10″ x 10″ squares from fusible interfacing.

SergerFabricBin Nancy Zieman 1

  • Stack fabric and interfacing squares. Mark and cut out a 2-1/2″ square from each of the lower corners.
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  • Press fusible interfacing to wrong side of outer fabric squares following the manufacturer’s fusing instructions.

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  • Serge lower base seam with a 4-thread overlock stitch, right sides together. Press seam to one side.

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  • Repeat for inner/lining fabric.

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  • Press 4″ x 4″ Pellon Peltex One-Sided Fusible Ultra Firm Stabilizer square to center base of outer fabric.

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  • Align side seams, right sides together; serge seam. Repeat for inner/lining fabric.

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  • Press seams to one side.

Note From Nancy: To prevent the serged edge from leaving an impression on the right side of the fabric, press seam over a sleeve board or dowel.

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Form and stitch gussets on bottom of tote

  • Fold side seams to align with lower base seam, right sides together, forming gusset. SergerFabricBin Nancy Zieman 30
  • Serge gussets, trimming off excess fabric. Repeat for lining fabric.

SergerFabricBin Nancy Zieman 14SergerFabricBin Nancy Zieman 13

Assemble, stitch, and attached lining to bin

  • Turn outer fabric tote right side out.
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  • Insert lining tote inside outer tote wrong sides together. Pin.

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Serging is both decorative and functional
Madeira Mouline Floss in the upper and lower loopers creates a beautiful finished edge.

  • Serge top edges
  • Setup serger for a standard 4-thread stitch.
  • Set the length and width settings at the longest and widest stitch options.
  • Insert Madeira Mouline, 100% cotton, six-strand floss into the upper and lower loopers.

Note From Nancy: I like to use the “lasso technique” in the upper and lower loopers when using decorative thread and the ExtraordinAir or Jet-Air Threading feature on my Baby Lock Ovation Serger.

  • Cut about 30-inches of all-purpose thread, loop in half, insert the cut ends into the threading ports, hold on to the lasso end, and push the button, which threads the loopers.
  • Insert the decorative thread through the lasso of the all-purpose thread (as pictured below). Manually pull the ends of the all-purpose thread, which will thread the heavier thread through the loopers.

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  • Thread needles with coordinating Madeira Aerolock Serger Thread. Test the stitch on a scrap of fabric. Adjust the stitch length or width as needed.

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Note from Nancy: Madeira Flosses are ideal for a decorative serger finish that resembles cording. Madeira Floss is securely packed in practical and unique packaging, which protects the thread from dust and dirt. Simply clip an opening at the bottom of thread pack and pull the thread you need. The floss stays clean and tangle free in its self-storage pack and can be stitched to the very last inch. Use large Wonder Clips to clip the floss packages to the serger thread guides.

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  • Serge the tote top edges, trimming off approximately 1/8”. Overlap ending and beginning stitches about 1/2”.

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  • Secure thread with Fray Block.
  • Speed-dry Fray Block by placing thread between layers of paper towels and pressing with a hot iron.

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  • Pull thread tales into stitching, using large darning needle.

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How to use a Serger to sew Fabric Bins by Nancy Zieman | Sewing With Nancy

For the perfect gift, fill your colorful fabric bin with sewing supplies and surprise a friend–just because! 

FabricBins NancyZieman FinishThe fabric bin is reversible and versatile!

Watch Ultimate Serger Techniques (Part One, and Part Two) on Sewing With Nancy online.

To watch Sewing With Nancy on your iPad, iPod Touch, or iPhone, download the app.

UltimateSergerTechniques NancyZieman

National Serger Month is April

Celebrate and check out my FREE! Big Bigger Canas Tote Tutorial! It’s just as fun and easy to make as the above fabric bin!

How to use a Serger to sew a Fabric Tote by Nancy Zieman | Sewing With Nancy


April is National Serger Month! Celebrate with Baby Lock!

Bye for now,

Nancy Zieman The Blog

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  • Jo Dunlap
    April 2, 2016

    I’m a complete beginner sewer and have 2 questions… 1. Is this project suitable for a newbie? 2. Can it be sewn with a Sofia2 Baby Lock?

  • Lynn Sterud
    April 2, 2016

    This will be a blog post to put on my Pinterest board for sure!! I’m the happy owner of an Ovation serger and love all the things I can make with it! My husband calls me the Sergin’ General!
    Do you have a link or recommendation for making a quilt on a serger? A local shop is offering a class called Guerrilla Quilting with Karen Clancy in April but I won’t be able to take it because of other commitments. Will your store be offering something like this?
    Thanks for all you do and best wishes for continued good health!

  • Priscilla Parmenter
    April 2, 2016

    Thanks for this post, I have the Ovation, and l love to see new projects that I can do with this machine. Thanks again.

  • Maria Hart
    April 3, 2016

    Thank you, Nancy, for this tutorial.
    I plan on making several got my sons growing family.

  • Sylvia Lane
    April 5, 2016

    Hi. Is there a way to print this project so I can construct it?
    Thank you. I love your blog.

  • Karen
    April 7, 2016

    This looks like such a fun project, not only for using my Ovation, but for using up some of my stash & making some great gifts! Thank you!

  • Karen Bakke
    April 26, 2016

    I don’t have a serger. I am wondering what I would use it for that my sewing machine can’t do for me.

  • Gail Beam
    April 14, 2018

    I love these serger projects! perfect for someone like me who needs to learn to use my serger more often

  • Lorraine Williams
    October 24, 2018

    I keep a little bag taped to the edge of the table under my serger to catch the worms and fluff but it keeps falling off. I saw this project and thought, why not make this bag with a handle that would go around or under the serger so it would never fall off and look very pretty at the sewing table.

    This would also be excellent for lining the wicker baskets that collect counter clutter.

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