Sew a Simple Tote Bag

 

I found a great pattern online for a tote bag that was easy to sew.  If you go here: http://www.make-it-easy.com/opentot2.html   you can see the pattern and print it off.  I cant copy the pattern here on my site due to copyright laws, but if you print the pattern off, I will give you some step-by-step pictures of how to assemble this tote bag.

 

Now for starters I did make some changes.  The pattern calls for webbing to be used as the handles.  I made my own handles out of fabric and I will be giving you instructions of that.  I liked using fabric because I could pick something that coordinated with my bag.

 

You need to use a heavy type of fabric.  I used denim, but afterwards felt like I could have used heavier denim.  Also the pattern calls for 44 inch wide fabric and denim comes in 60 inch bolts.  I purchased 1 yard instead of the 1 3/8 yards called for.   This gave me enough to make one bag and have some leftover denim to save for my next blue jean quilt or some other use.

 

One thing I did to help me with this pattern was to make a pattern out of tissue paper that was the needed size (22x48).

 

I started with fabric that had been washed and ironed.  The first thing I did was lay out my fabric and pin the pattern on and cut it out.

 

 

 

Then I made the handle.  I bought of a yard of 44 wide fabric.

 

 

I then cut the fabric into strips.  You want your strips to be about 5 or 6 inches wide.

 

 

I sewed the strips together until I had over the needed 3 yards of length. In the picture I have them sergered together, but sewing them together with a regular sewing machine works just fine.

 

 

Then I took my strip and folded it in half the long way and ironed it with wrong sides together.

 

 

Then I opened it up and folded the raw edges in to meet the center line and ironed that in place.

 

Then I refolded it along the center line to close it up and then sewed it closed. This will make a fairly heavy duty long strip that has no raw edges.

 

 

 

Then I measured out my 3 yards, drew a chalk line and cut it

 

 

Then, being careful to keep the strap from getting twisted I sewed the ends together and proceeded with the pattern using my strip in place of the webbing called for and following the given directions. I made the marks indicated on the pattern and making the handles as directed in the instructions. 

 

I then pinned the strap to my fabric and sewed it in place.

 

 

I turned the bag, right sides together and sewed up the side seams:

 

 

I sewed the corners of the bag according to the instructions. I lined up my side seams with the center of the bottom of the bag and measured from the end point of the triangle 3 inches and marked it with chalk and then sewed across it.

 

 

I did this to both sides, tuned the bag right side out and hemmed the top. 

 

Here is the finished bag:

 

 

I hope with this easy pattern and a few pictures to help you, you will be able to make your own tote bag!

 

Happy Sewing!! 

 

 

 

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