Thursday, June 20, 2013

iPad Mini Cargo Case + Tutorial

I think my iPad mini has to be one of my favorite possessions. I love it... like a lot. 
Since I got it for Christmas, I have just had a clear hard case on the back of it. The case doesn't do much to protect it except for scratches on the back, but I kinda like that it keeps it small and un-bulky (is that even a word?!). The only problem is- I like to take my ipad places and I have been cringing every time I have tossed it into a bag full of things that could scratch or damage it- so it was high time I did something about it. 

Let me introduce you to the little home I made for my mini... I think it's kinda cute, but still very functional: win-win.

When I was designing the pattern for the case, I knew that I wanted to have a simple sleeve that my mini would slide into quickly but I also wanted to have a place to store the charging cord while traveling so I decided on a little cargo pocket on the front. It turned out pretty nifty! ;)

It's padded with a layer of duck cloth and quilt batting in between the outside and inside panels of the case so it is nice and safe while stored within.

I made mine for my iPad mini, but it would be super easy to change the measurements and make it for  a regular sized iPad, kindle, tablet, etc.

Here is what you will need to make it:
-2 fat quarters
-1 package of 1/2 double fold bias tape (unless you want to make your own like I did)
-a bit of leftover quilt batting or fusible fleece
-duck cloth
-one large snap, magnetic clasp, or velcro for closure of flap
- 7.5 inches of 1/2 elastic (you could use 1/4 inch if desired as well)
-1 inch button (optional)
-light interfacing (optional: depending on weight of fabric- I used quilting cotton so I used light interfacing on the cargo pocket)

Measurements for cutting fabric:
Fabric A & B: cut one of each size per fabric-
-9 x 7.5 inch (front of case)
-12 x 7.5 inch (back of case/ top flap)
(optional: I used a bowl as a guide to slightly curve the top edge for the flap on the 12 x 7.5 panel on both fabric A & B- there is about a 2 inch overhang of the flap when closed so be sure to not round your edge further than around the 10 inch mark on your panel if that makes sense)
 - 4 x 9.5 inch
- 2 x 6.75 inch (this will be your flap for the cargo pocket- I used a bowl to slightly curve the bottom edge of these as well)

Next you will want to cut your quilt batting/fusible fleece and duck cloth panels. You will use one of the largest rounded panels and one of the 9 x 7.5 inch panel and use them as a guide to cut one panel of duck cloth exactly the same size of each. Next you will cut your batting/fusible fleece- you will want to cut your batting slightly smaller than the panel so you reduce bulk while sewing. 
When you are done you should have 2 duck cloth panels and 2 batting panels total.

Step 1: Quilt your main panels. I did a very basic quilting on my 2 main panels- just a couple straight lines of stitches to hold the layers together, but you can go as crazy or conservative as you would like on this step. To start take your large curved panel pieces and create your "quilt sandwich"- you will start by putting the interior fabric wrong side up, followed by the duck cloth, followed by the batting, and ending with the exterior fabric right side up and use pins to hold the 4 layers together while quilting. You will layer the smaller 9 x 7.5 inch panel the same way and quilt both as desired. Set your two main panels aside.

Step 2: Create your cargo pocket. Take your two 4 x 9.5 inch panels and apply interfacing if desired. Then put them right sides together and sew along one of the long edges using a 1/2 inch seam allowance. Press the seams open and then fold in half with right sides facing out and press top edge again.

Step 3: Create a casing for your elastic. I used 1/2 so I created a casing that was slightly larger than 1/2 so that the elastic fit very snug.
After your casing is sewn, set your stitch length to the longest your machine allows and sew a basting stitch along the raw edge of the panel you have created. This will be for gathering the bottom of the cargo pocket. Take your 9 x 7.5 inch quilted panel and gather the bottom of your cargo pocket so that it is 7.5 inches wide and pin and baste it to the bottom of your quilt panel.

Step 4: Feed your elastic into the casing by using a small safety pin to guide it through. 

 Once you have it evenly fed through pin the side edged of the cargo pocket to the side of the main quilted panel and baste them together. Be sure when basting that you catch the elastic good and back stitch over it well to secure it so it doesn't come loose while completing the next steps.

Step 5: Take your two curved panels for the cargo pocket flap and apply interfacing if desired. Place them wrong side together and pin the bias tape along the curved edge of the interior side or "wrong side" of the flap and sew. Then fold your bias tap over to the right side and pin in place and stitch to the front side of the flap. You may need to press well afterwards to help the panel lie completely flat. 

Step 6: Apply bias tape to the top edge of the flap. Pin your bias binding to the "wrong side" of the flap but leave an inch overhang of binding on each side and sew. Next instead of folding the bias tape over to the "right side" of the flap and stitching in place, fold it over to the "right side" of the flap and then pin the flap with the overhanging edges of bias tape to the main panel just above the gathered pocket. Once you have it pinned evenly, you will stitch along the bottom edge of the bias binding to secure to the flap and main panel of the case and then you will also stitch along the top edge of the binding to secure the binding to the main panel even more. 
 Step 7:Apply bias tape to the top edge of the main panel.

*If you are using velcro or anything other than a snap as your closure, you may want to apply it to the pocketed panel you have just created so that you don't have to wrangle it once the case is all put together.*

Step 8: ( not pictured) Place the main pocket panel  on top of the quilted large panel with the curved edge on top so the the interior fabrics are facing right side together and the exterior of the case if facing out. Line up the squared edges at the base of each panel and pin along the side and bottom of the panels to hold them together. Baste along the pinned edges to secure both panels.

Step 9: Apply bias tape to the case. I pinned the bias tape to the back of the case and had the edges of my bias tape connect at the bottom of the case so that the seam wasn't as noticeable. Then fold the edges of the binding over to the front of the case and pin in place and sew. 

Step 10: Sew your closure. I chose to use a large snap, and then I added a fabric covered button on the flap just for kicks. Remove any visible basting stitches if necessary.

That's it! Pretty slick huh? 


  1. Спасибо!!! Очень интересно и понятно !!!

  2. I love love love those fabrics! So happy you linked to them!

  3. so adorable! i mostly need a cover that protects mine while my 2yo plays with it! i just looove your fabric choice:)

  4. This is a great tutorial. I love the Nautical theme!!!

  5. hi, nice tutorial , i love the piping work very much , absolutely adorable. thanks...

  6. ASHLEY!! I loooove this so much. I pinned it last week and will be featuring it on Friday at my Pity Party. Hope you're doing well. xo

  7. I love this! I love the anchor fabric! I'm pinning this to my anchors aweigh board!

    Navy Wifey Peters @ Submarine Sunday Link Party

  8. Sweet Ashley.............your blog is wonderful. I love watching all you are doing and wish we lived close so we could share our love of creating and fabric and all that goes with it .... and of course our love of family. It would be lovely if we could share a bit of time eternally, aunt Shirley

  9. Woah very nicely done! Now all I need is an iPad...

    Marlene Detierro (TRUSTprice - Software Download)

    1. you and me both love to have a ipad

  10. This is adorable. Can't wait to make one.

  11. MY, MY such detailed sewing instructions using bright fabrics with sharp photos. I don't own an iPad, but I'm certain many bloggers will be pleased with your FAB tutorial. Thanks for sharing, Ashley.

  12. Really Cute. What are the dimensions of your tablet/ipad that fit in this tutorial?


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Thanks so much for stopping by! Have a great day!
xoxo, Ashley