Laptop and Bamboo Tablet Cases Quilted from Jacket Scraps

tribal print laptop and bamboo tablet cases unzipped

Having nice things means taking care of nice things. Not only am I a klutz, I also have a penchant for cramming way too many things into my shoulder bags. That means that things in my life get dropped and smushed. Since I like my nice things to stay nice, I decided to make cases for my laptop and bamboo tablet. An added bonus to this project was finding another way to use this fabric that I’m completely obsessed with and getting to look oh-gag-me-adorable with my matchy-matchy jacket, backpack, and technology cases, as well as getting to use scraps from my oh-so-awesome South African wax print that I just used to line a different jacket.

materials for laptop holder

I didn’t write this up as a pattern because everyone’s technological-item-of-choice is slightly differently sized, and there are dozens of other patterns and tutorials out there for similar projects. However, I thought I would share a few tips and details from my project that might help or inspire you. I cut rectangles of lining (2), outer fabric (2), and cotton batting a.k.a. waddding (4) that were an inch larger than my tech-item on all sides. You will also need a zipper that is longer than one side of your item by at least several inches.

quilted fabric

I stitched a piece of batting to each rectangle of fabric and lining. For the fabric, I followed the lines of the stripes. For the lining I just stitched a giant X from corner to corner.

tuck zipper inside layers

I sewed the fabric right sides together, inserting a zipper along the top edge and letting the zipper wrap around for a few inches to the side (this is important to be able to make the case fit tightly but allow you to get your device in and out). Use a 5/8″ seam allowance and DON’T trim the seam allowance because the excess fabric/batting protects the edges of your device. I inserted the lining, leaving it unsewn for the length of the side zipper so that I could easily turn the case right side out, and then tucked the excess zipper inside, between the lining and outside layer.

stitching lining to inside zipper

I hand stitched the lining to the zipper.

bamboo tablet case

I added a couple of extra touches to make the case extra special and extra safe. On both cases, I added a folded rectangle of fabric (and batting inside) that I stitched in place between the zipper and lining so that when I close the cases, I can tuck the extra layer of padding in place and the zipper doesn’t directly contact the device.

pouch for bamboo accessories

For my Bamboo tablet case, I also added a little pouch that hangs from the top and holds the stylus and usb connector cable. Now I won’t lose them but they won’t scratch or bang the tablet surface.

zippers on tribal print laptop and bamboo tablet cases

If you have a particularly thick laptop, you might want to add a gusset all the way around the edges. Since I have a MacBook Air, it’s quite thin and I found that the depth of the case caused by the multiple layers of fabric and batting was plenty deep. I love how these look and can’t wait to whip them out of my bag! Do you have any nice things that for which you’ve sewn protective cases?

tribal print laptop and bamboo tablet cases

Comments 8

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  1. They look great. This is timely! I need to make a new case b/c the zipper broke on my store-bought neoprene case (and also I need to add outer pockets for extra batteries and pens and a strap). I was thinking of incorporating my old case into the new cover.

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      Using the neoprene from the old case sounds like a great idea. I almost cannibalized the neoprene from a messenger bag I have that has a laptop slip, but I actually use the bag, so opted not to. I have heard that one can find old wetsuits at the thrift store and use e neoprene from those.

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      Hahaha! Yes!!! Love it!!! I totally thought nematode when I first saw that squiggle (in fact I used to work in a worm lab in college)!

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