patterns · sewing

A review of Simplicity Organiser – 1128

So today I’m going to talk about Simplicity 1128 pattern. This pattern has several options but the one I have tried is Option E – the travel organiser.  I have made several for my family and myself, and they have been used for knitting stuff, cosmetics, travel documents and electronics.


I found this pattern by chance at Hobbycraft one day when I was having a general mooch around and now it is one of my favourite patterns. I thought it would come in really useful when travelling, which it has! I have two, one is used for phone, passport, money etc. The other is used for make up, brushes, hair bobbles etc.



I have made 5 of these to date as they are so quick and easy to make, 2 for myself, 2 for my mum and 1 for my sister. These aren’t just useful as an organiser, they are brilliant as part of a little surprise as you can send them with little gifts inside. This always goes down well! My mum’s including things like chocolate, wax melts and make up. My sister’s included unicorn themed gifts (yes, she is an amazing adult!!) like a plush toy, notebook and key chain. They are also great for using up smaller pieces of fabric (27x12in) especially as a lot of different fabrics can be used as well as different fabrics inside and out.



Even though I love the pattern, I have made several amendments to the construction of the pattern to make it better (in my opinion) and overcome several pit falls.

Firstly I removed the handles as I never intended on carrying it round and they just got in the way, as well as using extra webbing. I also removed the ribbon from the zip pulls as I didn’t like how they looked.

I have sewn these several different ways to get the best look and for me I don’t use satin bias binding, instead I use poly-cotton bias binding. To me it has a better look and doesn’t fray any where near as much, making it easier to work with.  When sewing the pockets in place, you can either sew through all the layers so the stitches are visible on the outside. Or if you sew it to the inner fabric then attach that to the outside so the stitches are hidden. I prefer sewing them to the internal piece of fabric them attaching that to the fleece and outside fabric, so the stitches can’t be seen.

The pattern also calls for contrasting fabric inside and out, having tried different variations, I prefer having the same fabric for both inside and outside.


As much as I love this pattern, there are a few pitfalls that can make sewing it a pain if you fall into them .

Firstly the biggest problem is sewing PVC, it gets stuck to everything especially in hot weather – the machine, sewing feet, you! It is a complete nightmare. However I have found that sewing with a Teflon foot doesn’t stick and glides across the PVC making sewing a painless process. So before you sew I recommend having one of these at the ready!

When you are attaching the zips to the PVC pockets it can be difficult to get them in the same place on each, if they aren’t all equal it can lead to a wonky look overall. So once I have attache the bias binding to the PVC I mark in tailors chalk where the PVC ends, so it can be matched up with the next pocket.

I baste the project way more than the instructions state as I find that pieces move and then don’t line up. So I baste the fleece to the front piece and the PVC to the inside piece. I then baste the two halves together usually 3/8 seam allowance. This means everything can be lined up properly and by using 3/8 SA it is covered by the bias binding I use.

Finally the biggest issue I had was the size of the bias binding recommended, which was 0.5in double fold . I struggled as I ended up with basting stitches being seen, So I trimmed the edges of the organiser (when both halves sewn together) to 1/4 from the basting stitch. This meant that the stitches were completely hidden.

Organiser - folded (2)


Even with the few pitfalls, I really can’t recommend this pattern enough. IT IS JUST AMAZING!!!

Hope this is helpful.

Love Heather xx





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