Tutorial: Make Up Brush Roll

Here's a tutorial for an easy-peasy make up brush roll that is totally customizable. These are a great way to keep your make up brushes clean and protected. There's nothing earth-shatteringly new here but hopefully this will come in handy for someone! Play around with the measurements and this would also make a sweet color pencil roll for the kiddos.

Go grab the following:

-a fun print for the outside and pocket piece
(9 x 13.5 outer piece, 8 x 13.5 pocket piece)

-corduroy for the inside of the roll
(9 x 13.5 inches)

-cotton batting
(9 x 13.5 inches)

-satin or grosgrain ribbon
(26 inch piece)

-thread, fabric marking pen, ruler, rotary cutter and mat, hand sewing needle

*the ribbon length should be approx 26 inches, not 13 like the photo!!

Fold the pocket piece in half lengthwise, press, and topstitch. Starting from the right, mark off the lines you'll be stitching to create the brush slots. Measure in 2 inches and draw the first line. Measure 2 inches from the first drawn line, and draw another. From there mark off 6 lines 1 inch apart. That will leave you with a 3 1/2 inch space on the far left.

Now, layer the pocket piece on the corduroy and place both of those on the cotton batting. Pin everything in place. I like to sew from the bottom to the top of the pocket. Sew over every line you drew making sure to reinforce the stitching at the top of the pocket. Stitch across the topstitching of the first 2 inch slot to close it. This will allow the brush roll to "roll" up nicely and it will be easier to tie closed.

Fold the ribbon in half and place on the right side at the midpoint. Sew in place.

Lay the outer fabric on top of the pocket piece, right sides touching, pin in place, and then sew around all four sides using a 1/2 inch seam allowance. Leave a small opening along the top of the brush roll for turning.

Clip the 4 corners. You may need to trim the cotton batting near the corners to help reduce bulk. Turn the roll right side out, press, slip stitch the opening shut, and topstitch all around. All done!

A few tips:

Don't use cheap-o ribbon from the Target Dollar Spot. Great for scrapbooking, not so much for sewing. It won't hold up :(

If you're just starting out sewing, use thread that matches the fabric you're using. It will help blend away the wonky stitching.

Use a lighter or any other open flame you happen to have handy to heat seal the ends of the ribbon so they won't fray.

Feel free to ask any questions or to point out any glaring errors or inconsistencies. It is past my bedtime so there is no telling!

If you make one or a bunch, make sure to add your photos to my Flickr pool!!


  1. cute vanessa! wish I had the ambition to do makeup!

  2. Those are so cute!! It would be nice to fill them up with new brushes for a nice gift.

  3. great tut Vanessa. I am glad you are posting these. So great!! I linked this on my blog.
    See free tutorials on my blog: http://callmecraftymomma.blogspot.com/

  4. Oooooo....this is CUTE! :) I'm not much of a sewing goddess, but for this I'd definitely haul out the ol' machine.

    (Also in love with your patchwork pencil pouches on your etsy shop. soooo droolable.) :)

  5. Your blog is lovely!
    I will link you on my blog and I'd like to invite you to visite also my blog :D

    Laura from Italy

  6. Thank you so much for this tutorial! I have been wanting to make some of these as gifts and now I can! Thanks again!

  7. wow perfect timing. I was trying to think of what to make for my Mom for Mother's Day. She is currently using a ratty-looking canvas one. This is WAY better!

  8. Thank you so much for taking the time to write and post this tutorial! I've been wanting a brush roll for months bus I just wasn't sure how to make it. Your directions were really easy to follow and I made one in less than an hour!

    These will be great gifts!!!

  9. Great tutorial, thanks! I hadn't sown in ages, but this project gave me no problems at all. Made it yesterday between work and dinner and I love it!

  10. Great project! Made some smaller ones for crayons and gave them as gifts in my daughter's kindergarten class.

  11. Your fabric choices are so pretty!