Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Tutorial: 20-Minute tote

Hi, all! I had some requests for patterns/instructions on how to make this tote that I made at the Renegade Craft fair at the Threadbanger booth, soooo, I decided to write up a quick tutorial for you all!

Here's what you will need:
  • About 1/2 yard of fabric at least 45" wide. Preferably, it will be sturdy woven fabric, but I used a polyester knit for mine. It's fine for now, but will probably stretch over time.
  • Thread and the usual sewing-related accessories (scissors, iron, ruler, needles, etc.)

1. Draw a pattern with dimensions similar to the following on newspaper or several pieces of scrap paper taped together. These measurements are approxiamate based on the bag I made. You might want to toy around with the dimensions.

2. Fold the fabric in half and pin the pattern on the fabric so that the fold of the fabric is matched with the bottom of the bag (the part that says 15" on the piece of paper in the picture above). Cut out the pattern.

3. Turn the fabric right sides together and sew up the 2 sides (the part that says 12.5" in the picture above).

4. Optional: sew corners to make a flat bag bottom like in #7 of this tutorial by U-Handbag.

5. Finish the raw edges with a zig-zag or other overlock stitch.

6. Tie the handles together like this (can you also see the overlock stitching on the edges?):

You're done! That was easy, wasn't it? Here's my final product up close:

You can experiment with different embellishments or folding over the edges instead of overlocking them. You can also line the bag and/or use interfacing. Or, you can sew the handles together if you prefer. You be the designer!
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