Millcreek Star Pouch Instructions

This tutorial will help you do two incredible things: First, you'll get to sew the beautiful Millcreek Star block, designed by Katie Blakesley of SwimBikeQuilt (check out her Instagram).

Second, you'll learn how to sew a pouch, using the Millcreek Star as the main attraction. 

Here we go!

Step 1: Sew the Quilt Block


The Millcreek Star block is part of a larger quilt pattern, compiled as the 2017 Summer Sampler. The Sampler organizers have generously allowed us to use this block for FREE. You'll get more info about that in your email inbox. 

In order to sew the block you'll need to download the pattern, which you can do by Clicking Here

For this tutorial, we're going to use the 6-inch version, which begins on page 5 of the pattern.


Here's my own Millcreek Star block that I'll use for the tutorial:

Step 2: Cut Out the Fabric

For the rest of the pouch, you'll need to cut out the following pieces:

  • (x2) Front left & right panels - 6.5" x 2.5"
  • (x2) Front top & bottom panels - 10.5" x 2.5"
  • (x2) Zipper tabs - 3.5" x 2"
  • (x2) Liner - 10.5" x 10.5"
  • (x1) Back - 10.5" x 10.5"
  • (x1) 9" zipper (Check out our 9" zippers here)



Step 3: Piece Together the Front

We're going to use the Millcreek Star block right away, so grab that, as well as the two 6.5" x 2.5" pieces.

Throughout this entire tutorial we are going to use a 1/4" seam allowance.

  • Place the two pieces face-down on the top of the Millcreek Star block.
  • Sew the 6.5" x 2.5" pieces to the block by stitching along the outside edge of each one.
  • Press everything so that it is flat and open.


Now we'll do the same thing, but use the larger, 10.5" x 2.5" pieces.

  • Place the two pieces face-down on the top and bottom of the block that we just sewed.
  • Sew the 10.5" x 2.5" pieces to the block by stitching along just the top or bottom edge of each one.
  • Press everything so that it is flat and open.


Step 4: Prepare the Zipper

Now we are ready to prepare the zipper and attach it to the front. To begin, grab the two 3.5" x 2" zipper tabs as well as the 9" zipper.

  • Fold in both of the shorter edges of the 3.5" x 2" fabric zipper tabs, and press them so that they stay folded.
  • Then fold each of the zipper tabs in half, and press them so that they stay folded.


With the 3.5" x 2" zipper tabs folded we are ready to sew them onto the zipper:

  • To attach the zipper tabs you are going to sandwich the fold over the end of the zipper, with the zipper in the middle. 
  • Leave a small gap of 1/16" to 1/8" between where the zipper stops and the fabric.
  • Sew the zipper tab along the opening (the side opposite the fold)


Next you'll repeat the same process for the other end of the zipper:


  • Sandwich the zipper tab over the end of the zipper, with the zipper in the middle. 
  • Leave a small gap of 1/16" to 1/8" between where the zipper stops and the fabric.
  • Sew the zipper tab along the opening (the side opposite the fold)


Step 5: Sew the Front Block and Front Liner Together

This is a fun step. You're going to need the front, the zipper, and one of the liners. We're going to make a sandwich with the three pieces:

  • Lay the front block face-up
  • Lay the zipper face-down (with the zipper pull down) on top of the front block, so that the edge of the zipper and the edge of the block are aligned. Center the zipper horizontally.
  • Lay the liner piece face-down, so that the top edge of all three pieces are aligned.
  • Sew everything together along the top edge.
  • Note: As you sew, the zipper pull may get in the way of the foot of your sewing machine. If this happens, simply pause your sewing (with the needle down), and zip/unzip the zipper so that the pull is out of the way.


Before we move on, grab your scissors and trim the zipper tab along the top (BUT NOT THE SIDES!):

  • Be sure that you only trim the zipper tabs along the top, and not the sides.
  • Trim both tabs.


Step 6: Finish the Front

We'll begin by pressing the pieces that we sewed together in Step 5, and then sewing a quick line to keep the pieces flat and flush:


  • Lay out the entire front/back, and then tuck the back underneath the front. Fold it so that the entire zipper is still visible.
  • Press the seams so that they are flat.
  • Sew on the top of the front block, 1/8" in from the seam where the front block is attached to the zipper.


Step 7: Add the Second Liner and the Back

Okay, in this step we are doing a ton of stacking, so pay close attention to the order that we stack, as well as which pieces are face-up or face-down.

  • First, lay out the following:
    • On the bottom, place the second liner, face-up
    • Next, lay the front piece (that we assembled in Steps 3-6), face-up, so that you can see the Millcreek Star. Align the top of the zipper with the top of the liner.
    • Finally, lay the back piece face-down, with the top aligned with the other two pieces
  • Now you are ready to sew all three pieces together, with the seam 1/4" from the top.


Whew, now that you have all the pieces, flip the back and the back liner so that the whole project is laying down, like a book spread open on the table:

  • Lay out the project so that the front & front liner are on one side, and the back & back liner are on the other side, with the front and back both face-up.
  • Press the seam along the edge of the zipper that connects the zipper to the back & back liner.
  • Sew along the edge on the back where the back connects to the zipper. Sew 1/8" in from the seam.


Step 8: Sew the Edges

In this step we are going to sew the pouch together along the sides. It requires a bit of tricky folding, so pay attention to how that is done.


  • First, unzip the zipper so that it is open--that will be important for when you flip the pouch.
  • Next, you need to re-fold the project so that the front and back are face-to-face, and the two liners are also face-to-face
  • Finally, sew along the entirety of three edges, leaving the end of the liners open.
    • NOTE: As you sew over the zipper section, be sure to fold the zipper tabs in half, with the fold bulging towards the front/back section (like in the picture above). 


Now let's focus on sewing the edge of the liners (almost) closed. We're going to leave a small section open so that we can flip the pouch:

  • When you sew this edge closed, leave a small gap of around 2". I like to put a couple of pins in to remind me to leave the gap. 


Step 9: Boxed Corners

This is an optional step. I really like boxed corners, and they are very simple to do. It's all in the fold:

  •  The first step to a successful boxed corner is the fold. Hopefully the video does a good enough job showing you how to do it. 

  • Measuring along the seam, measure 1" down and mark a line perpendicular to the seam.
  • Sew along the line that you just marked, and then trim away tip of the corner. 
  • Repeat this for all four corners, including the corners of the liner.


Step 10: Flip & Close

The final step is here! 

  • Reach through the small opening that you left in the liners, and flip the entire pouch right-side-out. 

  • Sew the opening shut. I usually put the seam about 1/8" in from the edge. If the seam is unruly, then just press the edge so that it lays flat.
Now just tuck the liner into the pouch and that's it! You now have a finished pouch with a beautiful quilt block on the front! 




  • Tiziana

    What a great idea! Thank you.

  • Joyce Lewis

    Thanks for this tutorial. Great way to use up extra blocks or just practice on getting those points right and then being able to use the block in something nice.

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