D.I.Y. Tote Bag

Tote Bag 22

I am a total novice in sewing. I bought (believe it or not) an IKEA sewing machine. Fairly cheap and good enough to do my first steps in sewing. Lili and Gabi have way more experience in it, and so basically they always have to guide me in my sewing projects. A few weeks back I did some screen printing with a friend (some day I’ll show you how to do this), and I wanted to put those printings on a bag. So the bags had to be created. Gabi was kind enough to guide me through and explain me how to use a sewing machine.

This is definitely a good last minute Christmas present idea. It does not require very long and a hand-made present is always very much appreciated!

Material needed:
Any kind of fabric. I didn’t measure it. I compared it with a tote bag I had already at home.
And of course a sewing machine and a pair of scissors.

To start with fold your fabric inside out in two.Tote Bag 1

Then iron it so that the surface is nice and even.Tote Bag 2

Next, fold the boarder to make the hem.
Tote Bag 3

Iron your fold.
Tote Bag 4

Fold another time and iron again.
Tote Bag 6

In the meantime assistants are allowed to be silly with any remaining fabric.

Tote Bag 5

I always knew I’d look good in a mustache – Carolina

Afterwards pin together the two sides of the bag which you will sew.
Tote Bag 7

Then sew both sides.
Tote Bag 8

To make sure that the stitches do not open easily, do a row with a straight stitch and another one on the outside with a zig-zag stitch.
Tote Bag 9

Lizy is very attentive whilst Gabi is showing me how to go on with the bag.
Tote Bag 10

Liz also helps me on the next step which is to fold our prepared hem.
Tote Bag 11

Now sew the hem with the machine making sure you are not closing the opening whilst you are sewing it (I was silly enough to do so. And it is a pain to re-open the stitches!).
Tote Bag 12

Voilà the body of the bag is now finished!
Tote Bag 13

Now it is time to make the straps. Fold the fabric in two. Fold it inside out. We’ll turn it around once it is sewed together.
Tote Bag 14

And fix it with a lot of needles.
Tote Bag 15

And again sew yourself all along each strap.
Tote Bag 16

Now turn the straps inside out. I do really suggest you to make the straps large enough so the turning inside out action is not becoming a real pain! For this bag I didn’t have enough fabric left and it was really tricky to turn the fabric. Lili and Gabi helped me out. It took seriously quite a bit of time. We used the technique of putting a pencil through and turn the fabric over it. Eventually it worked out.

Tote Bag 17

Now pin you straps to the bag.
Tote Bag 18

Sew a square shape. As mentioned earlier my skills are very limited and therefore my squares are not very even. But for a first time try I suppose it is okay.

Tote Bag 20

And here we go the finished tote bag with Miss Liz!
Tote Bag 21

Have a good Thursday!

Nathalie & the gang


4 thoughts on “D.I.Y. Tote Bag

  1. Pingback: 7 steps to prepare a recipe without making a mess – By Flora Murai | Outland at Home

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