Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Easy Sew Tote Bag

It's been a super long time since I did a little DIY "how to" so I thought I'd break the crafty silence and show you how to make a super easy to sew tote bag!
First you'll need fabric, scissors and a sewing machine, quilting batting is optional as well.
Decide how big you want your bag to be and cut 2 pieces of your exterior fabric and 2 of your interior. I made mine 18.5" x 19.5". Also cut two long strips of each fabric for your straps, mine were 24" long by 2.5" wide. Now sew your bag together (no pictures of this part sorry...)!
Lay the exterior fabric, right sides together and stitch along 3 sides, leaving the top open. Do the same with the interior fabric.
To finish the corners of the bag and to form a bit of a bottom, fold the corner of the bag so that the side seam lines up with the bottom seam, pin in place (measure how far in the pins are placed as you will be doing this on both sides of the bag to both exterior and interior pieces) and sew.
Cut the excess fabric (the triangle part) and turn the exterior fabric right side out. Now stuff the interior bag into the exterior bag (if using the batting be sure to do all the steps above with the batting, creating a bag out of the batting and then layer that bag between the interior and exterior pieces.)
Fold the top of the fabrics over 1/4-1/2 an inch and press so they lay flat. Set the bag aside so we can work on the straps!
Sew an interior and exterior piece, right sides together, down one long side, across the short and then up the other long, leaving one short end open. Using a knitting needle turn the strap right sides out and press. Totally an optional step but, top stitch down the long sides of the straps.
Tuck the straps into the top of the bag pieces just assembled and pin like a mad person! Do this on both sides and then top stitch around the entire bag.
Done and done!
This is my standard bag "how to" and I can usually pound out a bag in about an hour. You can also fancy it up as much as you would like. I quilted panels and made bags for my boys using left over ribbon as the straps!

Happy sewing!

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