This post is dedicated to sewing a simple tote bag with a zippered closure. I love making these to use up scraps of batting. I keep one in my carry-on bag filled with chargers, headphones, and such when I travel. They make a quick little gift, too (perfect size for a diaper, wipes and clean onesie!)
finished size of bag: 12″ x 10″ x 5″ wide at the bottom.
Supplies and cutting:
one 12″ zipper
Main outer fabric (blue print): cut two rectangles 12 1/2″ x 9 1/2″
Accent outer fabric and handles (green print): cut two rectangles 12 1/2″ x 5 1/2″
cut two strips, 3″ x 22″
cut two rectangles 2″ x 3″ for zipper tabs
Scraps of batting: cut two rectangles 13″ x 15″
Lining fabric (white): cut two rectangles 13″ x 15″
Prepare the zipper:
Fold each of the zipper tab pieces in half (making them 2″ x 1 1/2″) and press to crease. Open, and press each side half way to the center and press to crease as shown below:
Re-fold at center crease and place over the starting end of the zipper. Carefully stitch across the tab, backstitching directly over the zipper to secure.
From the edge of the first tab, measure 10″ of zipper and cut it. Repeat the step above to add the second fabric tab to the cut end of the zipper.
1. match one 12 1/2″ x 9 1/2″ rectangle of outer fabric with one 12 1/2″ x 5 1/2″ rectangle of accent fabric. Sew them together, right sides facing, along the 12 1/2″ edge. Press. This results in a panel that is 12 1/2″ x 14 1/2″.
2. Place the fabric panel made in step one on a scrap of batting. Quilt with straight lines running perpendicular to the seam between the fabrics. Topstitch along the seam on the accent fabric.
3. Trim the excess batting to square up the panel. Repeat these steps with the other outer pouch pieces and batting.
4. Place one quilted tote panel face up on design surface. Using a ruler, place one handle in place so that the ends are centered between the 3″ and 4″ lines and between 8 1/2″ and 9 1/2″ lines as shown below:
|first tote unit|
12. Sew around the entire perimeter, leaving a 6″ opening on the end of the lining side (will be the bottom of the finished bag). Do not turn yet.
13. To make the boxy bottom of the bag, pinch the corner so that the seam up the side of the back mates the seam at the bottom, right sides facing. Measure 2 1/2″ from the corner and mark. Pin to hold the corner in position.
14. Sew across the corner along the marked line. Cut off the corner 1/4″ outside the seam as shown below:
15. repeat steps 13-14 on all four corners (outer tote and lining). Then turn right sides out through the opening left in the bottom of the lining.
16. close the opening in the lining by top-stitching between the two corner seams, keeping the edges turned to the inside. See below:
Look what you did! A cute little tote to hold necessities while traveling, for baby, or to fill with goodies for a quick gift.
Guess what my kids’ teachers are getting this year?
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