-3/4 yard of fabric for the outside of the tote
-1/2 yard of fabric for the inside of the tote
-1 package of heat and bond fusible fleece. (optional)
For this project, the bottom of the bag is 15 1/2 inches wide and the sides 16 inches long. You can make it any size. You would just need to adjust fabric requirements.
1. Cut two 15 ½” x 16” pieces (outside)
2. Cut two 15 ½” x 16” pieces (inside)
3. Cut one 4” x 44” of fabric (outside fabric). Then cut it in half. This will be your handles.
4. Cut two pieces of fusible fleece (15 1/2 x 16 1/2) This is optional if you want your tote to be stiff.
Now take the 4” x 44” piece…
-Fold fabric in half and press.
– Then fold both sides to the middle crease and then over again.
-Top-stitch down each side of strap close to the edge.
Now take your outside and inside pieces of fabric…
-If you want your bag to be stiff you need to use the heat and bond stabilizer. If you want your bag to be floppy you will skip this step. Iron the rough side of the stabilizer to the wrong side of the fabric you will use for the outside of your bag.
-Lay inside fabric right sides together and sew on three sides. Leave one side open for the top!
-Next, sew your outer fabric pieces right sides together on three sides.
-Now we are going to “box” the corners of the bottom of the bag. To do this pinch the corner, iron and sew 1 ½ “ from the corner. You will do this for both the inside and outside.
– Place inside fabric inside the outside fabric right sides together. I slipped the inside fabric up a bit so you can see how it slips in.
– Place straps in between right sides of fabric on each side about three inches from the side edge.
– Pin or clip straps and the top edge of bag well. Stitch around the top of bag 1/2 inch from the edge. Leave a 3 inch opening. We will need an opening to be able to turn the bag right side out!
-Turn bag right side out and press with an iron.
-Close up the opening used for turning.
-Top stitching not only makes your bag look more finished, but also makes the seams more durable.
ALL Finished! Congrats! You did a great job!