Bedside Organizer

9:56 PM

My friend Katherine made one of these and I borrowed the idea. I found I always had a pile of books on the floor next to my bed and a pile on my nightstand, my glasses would always fall off and land somewhere to be stepped on as I get out of bed blind in the morning.
It's basically two bags connected by a strip of fabric that goes under the mattress to hold them off the ground and closer to your hands.

So this has been useful to me, I showed Rhett the bag for his side of the bed and he said, pointing to the pen sleeves, "Jess I can't fit string cheese in these!" So he saw the only use as a potential midnight snack holder, but that is OK, I needed his side to help hold mine. Maybe he'll end up using it after all.

1. Cut two bags.
Basically a front and back with 2 side strips and one bottom strip. I used old cargo pants of Rhett's so the fabric was durable and free. I measured the largest book I would use for the dimensions.
2. Cut two liners.
Cut two more bags out to become the lining. I used striped thin denim scraps.
3. Sew the lining
I sewed the bottom strip to the front and back then added the sides to make a square bag.
4. Reinforce the front and back pieces
I found a really thick, stiff liner by the interfacing at the fabric store. It was $6/yd but you don't need much. I cut pieces the dimensions of the front and back and basted it to the outer fabric to help keep it stiff.
5. Add pockets to front panel
I decided what pockets I needed and used denim for my organizer, but on Rhett's I used all the same pants fabric.
  • PENS: I hemmed the top of the pen piece. Sewed one side down, then placed a pen under it and sewed on the other side, so it would be the right size for pens.

  • GLASSES: I used a lens cloth to line this pocket so the glasses wouldn't get scratched. I sewed a rectangle to the face of the bag and then attached the lined denim pocket on top, making sure there was enough height in the pocket so the glasses could fit.
  • NOVELS: For these bigger pockets, I sewed the corners in to make them thick enough to hold the books and attached the pocket by top stitching.
6. Sew outer bags together.
I sewed the exterior bags together the same way I did the lining, bottom strip connecting front and back, then sewing the sides on to make the square bag. It is hard to sew this together with the stiff reinforcing inside.
7. Place liner in finished bag
Fit the lining in the exterior bag, so all the raw seams and stiff reinforcing are concealed between the two.
8. Sew the lining & exterior sides of the front & back together
I made the side strips shorter than the front and back and sewed the lining to the front top sides and back top sides first.
9. Sew the tops of the lining and bag together.
So at this point I had raw fabric along the top of the bag and the top of the shorter sides. I was lazy and just plopped grosgrain ribbon on top to conceal the raw edges, and give a red accent. I didn't worry about dealing with the top of the back because that would connect to the long strip that goes under the mattress.
*At this point your bag is done but I added....

10. Bungee cord stoppers.
I knew I would load the big main pocket with a lot of stuff and thought how this may make a square shape sag forward and so I used my grommet clamp ($7 and it can attach snaps too) to make a hole in the front. I punched a hole in the back and threaded elastic cord through the front and through stoppers ($1 for 2) . I chose to add a bead so you have something to grab onto when you need to tighten the stopper. The elastic cord went through the hole in the back and was sewn down.
11. Connect the two bags with strip of fabric
I measured the box spring of our bed and cut a strip of the lining that length. I sewed each bag to the strip and at this point it is finished!
Inexpensive and useful! You could get some cuter fabric so it looks better on your bed, but I just used durable fabric I already had. I thought about attaching an applique of our initials or something to the front of the novel pocket, but decided to much froo froo for what I was using it for.

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