Monday, May 23, 2011

Car Roll Tutorial

This nifty little storage solution for toys cars has been a hit in our house.  It's perfect for all those matchbox cars your little one has lying around.  It's also great for taking places when you need them to be occupied for a little while.  Ours comes in very handy for those long waits at the doctors or when we go out for tea.

I had been looking around at a few different ones of these on the net but didn't find anything that really suited what I wanted, so I decided to create my own.  This one's able to store 6 cars (very handy if there are other little ones around) and has a road for them to drive on as well as a ribbon to keep it all tied up. 

I love this car roll so much, (so does Mr. J) that I decided to share it with you all.  This is my first tutorial so please excuse any errors etc but I would love some feedback from all those out there in blog land.  Please note that this tutorial is for personal use only, it isn't to be copied in any way and items made from this are not to be sold.

If you stumble across my blog and you're not a sewer but would love one of these for someone special, send an email to and I can make one to order.

Car Roll Tutorial.

14” X 19” fabric for the outside (what will be seen when rolled up).
14” X 19” fabric for the inside (this is the piece with the road on it).
9” X 19” fabric for the car pockets
27” length of ribbon
Black fabric for the road (optional)
Double sided fusible webbing for the road, available at most craft stores (optional)
Other sewing supplies including scissors, machine etc.

Let's Make It
Iron all fabric and cut it to the sizes shown above.

Take the pocket piece (9” X 19”) and fold in half lengthways.  Press.

Place this folded piece on top of the inside piece lining up the long edges.  (Make sure the raw edges of the pocket piece are on the bottom.)  Pin the pocket at the top and bottom onto the inside fabric at the halfway mark (9 ½”) as shown.

Now pin the pocket piece every 3 inches from the centre pin (pin both top and bottom to keep it straight).  No need to pin the last 3 inch mark near each edge as this will be caught in the seam when everything is sewn together.  (You will end up with 5 rows of pins.)

Stitch up each of these marks, stopping at the top of the pocket piece and reinforcing by going backwards and forwards on your machine.  You will end up with 5 rows of stitching.

Trace a road shape onto your fusible webbing and cut it out just outside your line.  It doesn't have to be a figure 8, an oval works just as well.
If you look closely you will see my pencil line!

Iron this onto your black fabric according to manufacturers instructions.

Now cut along your hand drawn line.  I find cutting along the line after you have ironed it on ensures the fusible webbing meets the edge of the fabric and sticks better overall.

Peel backing off fusible webbing and place onto inside fabric piece.  Iron on well.  If you have strong fusible webbing, you can skip the next step of sewing.

Stitch around the edge of the road both inside and out to hold in place.  I like to use a zig zag stitch with a width of 2 and length of 1.

Lay your road and pocket piece on a flat surface.  Take your ribbon and fold it in half lengthways.  Place the ribbon onto the pocket piece with the folded edge hanging over the right edge of the fabric.  It’s also a good idea to place the ribbon just higher than halfway between the bottom and top of the pocket piece.

Place the outside fabric face down onto the road and pocket piece and pin around, making sure the ribbon is caught in between the layers.

Stitch all the way around the whole lot using a 1/2” seam.  Make sure you leave an opening of about 4” at the top for turning through.

Clip the corners off, being careful not to cut the stitching and turn through.  I find a chop stick is great for making sure the corners are poked through properly.

Iron everything flat and top stitch around the outside edge, closing the top opening as you go.

Voila, you now have one finished car roll.

Fill with cars and roll up.

Give it to that special little person in your life and watch them enjoy the fun.


  1. Great tutorial! Very easy to follow and good pics to illustrate. I'll be bookmarking this one to use later in the year for a little boy's birthday .... :)

  2. What a great tutorial. I'm going to buy some fabric to give it a go. I'm sure DS will love it when he is old enough.