Hooked on Needles

Friday, January 2, 2009

Tote Bag Tutorial - Lesson 2: Inside Lining and Pockets

Who doesn't just LOVE a big tote bag with lots of pockets? I mean, what's the point of having a giant tote bag to haul your stuff around in if you can't also organize it in some way?

The first lesson was on fabric requirements. And here's the next lesson in tote bag construction - the Inside Lining and Pockets.



Finishing Inside Pocket EdgeWorking on a 21 inch edge of the Gingham pocket fabric, turn under about a half inch of the fabric and press, then turn it under again and press.


Finishing Inside Pocket EdgeStitch close to the first fold making a nice neat hem for the upper edge of the inside pocket. Do the same for the opposite edge.


Layering Lining and Pocket Fabric with BattingCut a piece of stiff batting 21 inches by about 11 inches and fold it in half long ways so that it measures 21 by about 5 1/2 inches. With the Paisley lining fabric right side up, lay this batting across the center of the Paisley, matching the edges. Lay the Gingham pocket fabric, right side up, on top of the Paisley and batting, matching long edges and center lines. (I use the fold in the fabric to mark the center.)


Pinning Lining,Pocket Fabric and BattingPin all layers together along the long edges and along the edges of the batting to hold everything in place.


Sewing Lining, Pocket Fabric and BattingStitch up the long sides, and then stitch across the fabric along the edges of the batting through all three layers.


Sewing Lining, Pocket Fabric and BattingStitch back and forth from edge to edge of the batting in any design you choose. I did a big free-hand zig-zag. This holds all the layers together to help stabilize the bottom of the bag.


Stitch Lines to Separate Pocket Fabric into Smaller PocketsDecide how big you want the inside pockets to be on each side of the bag and stitch a double line from the top edge of the pocket all the way down to where the batting begins. This will serve to separate the pockets. I made two pockets on one side of the bag...


Stitch Lines to Separate Pocket Fabric into Smaller Pockets...and three pockets on the other side. You can make your pockets any size you like. Also if you want pockets that are not as deep as the bag itself, you can stitch a line from side to side, making the bottom of the pocket higher up the side of the bag.

This completes the Inside Lining and Pockets section of this tote bag. If you do not want inside pockets on your tote bag, you can skip this step altogether and simply continue your tote bag construction with the Paisley lining fabric as it was cut in the first lesson.

An alternate pocket idea for the inside of the bag would be to cut a piece of fabric a little bigger than the finished size of the pocket. Hem the top edge as shown above. Turn under the other three edges once. Sew pocket onto the right side of the lining fabric wherever you want it to be.

Pockets are one of the many places you can get so creative with your tote bags. Use your imagination and knowledge of your own needs to come up with pockets that work for you!

In the next lesson, I will show you how to prepare the straps for the tote bag. In the meantime, I have a few projects I need to finish up and get mailed out. Don't worry -- they are not Christmas gifts! I might even let you peek at them before I close up the packages!

Happy Stitching!


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1 Comments:

  • PLEASE KEEP THESE DIRECTIONS ON THE WEBSITE, RIGHT NOW I DON'T HAVE A PRINTER AND I SURE WOULD LIKE TO TRY THAT ZIPPER TRICK! I ALSO LIKE THE WAY YOU DID THE STRAPS, VERY NICE. THAT WAS THE WORST PART FOR ME WHEN MAKING PURSES. THANK YOU. MY E-MAIL IS ginvandenberg@yahoo.com

    By Anonymous Anonymous, At February 15, 2010 at 4:03 PM  

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