Saturday, December 8, 2007

Reversible Tote, with pockets

I love all the fun, new, retro fabrics out and available right now.
They just make me smile!
So I decided to make a reversible tote using three of my favorite fabrics in my stash. (Yes, yes. I was supposed to be be working on a another project, and I shouldn't have started something new, yada yada yada. Get off my back- Sheesh!)

This is a bag you can make in an afternoon, and the directions below are for the simpler version, with some pointers for making the little special bits that I chose.

You will need at least 2 complimentary, contrasting fabrics.

Straps & Pockets:
As you may notice in the photos, I chose to use a third fabric that was complimentary to both my tote fabrics.

For the Straps, I cut 2 pieces approximately 4 inches by 40.
Working with one strap at a time, turn right sides together lengthwise and seam the raw edge so you have a tube.
Turn the tube right side out, and press.
Repeat with second strap.

For pockets, cut pieces approximately 5 inches by 5 inches, and turn the edges under twice, stitching down for stability.

Tote Body:
Work with each fabric and do exactly these same steps for both.

Cut fabric 26 inches by 16 inches
Fold right sides together and sew a seam along both sides, leaving the top open (opposite the fold/bottom). You may choose to sew off each corner at a 45 degree angle, to give a 'bottom' to the tote. Just make sure you
Turn top, raw edge under 3/8 inch and sew seam all the way around.
(You would now add the pocket, by simply sewing it into place where you want it. Be careful to sew pretty! Everyone will see this stitching.)

Now you join the bags:

Turn one of the bag layers Right Sides out.
Place the other bag layer inside the first and match the top edges, pinning every couple inches.
Place the strap ends between the two layers and pin in place. (I measured 3 1/2 inches from the sides.)
Stitch both layers together, all the way around, making sure you keep the fabric evenly fed. (The extra pinning will help keep it even. An even feed foot may help too.)
Sew a second line of stiching slightly inside from your original line.
You may also choose to add more stitching to the bottoms of each bag handle.

And there you have a darling, reversible tote!
Now you just have to fill it with something. Maybe you need to go Fabric Shopping!

This is another project for Thrifty Gift Maker hour, a live online chat held at #QuiltChat I host. All quilty-crafty types are welcome to join in the fun! Gift Maker Chat is on Sundays @ 7 pm & Mondays @ 10 am EST, but there are usually folks in around the clock, as we have friends from around the globe.


Tanya Brown said...

Bless you for posting this! These would make a nice, considerate gift for the holidays and a good alternative to plastic bags when shopping.

Kim said...

looks so easy- will have to try after the holidays though. Have a few projects to finish first before I start anything else