Friday, August 20, 2010

Tutorial: Knitting Supplies Tote

Previously, I made a crochet hook roll for my grandmother. When you start sewing, you'll find your momentum and it's kind of hard to stop! So I decided to make her a matching bag with an interior pocket long enough for a pair of knitting needles. I only got the idea of making this tutorial towards the end of my project, so there aren't too many pictures to share. To be honest, I've only made a box pouch and a clutch before this, so this is actually my first attempt at making a bag. I figured my mistakes while making the bag, so I put in some recommendations for better results - I hope!

1) fabric for the exterior of the bag and pocket
2) coordinating fabric for the lining of the bag and pocket
3) fusible interfacing to fuse to exterior fabric (unless you're using a heavy weight fabric, then you can skip this)
3) coordinating thread

Note: Seam allowances are 1/4" unless otherwise stated.


PART A: Preparation
1) First cut out your pieces. You should have the following pieces for the:
- BODY: 6 pieces of 17" x 17" fabric/interfacing (2 of exterior fabric, 2 of lining, and 2 of interfacing)
(it's actually better if your interfacing pieces are 16 3/4" x 16 3/4" squares so that you won't need to sew through many layers)
- POCKET: 2 pieces of 3 1/2" x 12" fabric (1 of exterior fabric, and 1 of lining)
(I would recommend adding in interfacing for the pocket as well)
- HANDLES: 4 pieces of 2 1/4" x 15" fabric (2 of exterior fabric, and 2 of lining)
(again, I think it'd be better to add in interfacing for the handles also)
2) Fuse the interfacing on to the WRONG side of the exterior fabric for all parts of the bag (ie body, pocket and handles).

PART B: Pocket
1) With RIGHT sides together, sew along 3 edges, leaving the bottom open. Turn right side out. Fold in the bottom edges about 1/4". Press all sides.
2) Topstitch top of pocket.
3) Position pocket on one of the body lining pieces and pin in place. Sew along the 3 edges, leaving the top open.

PART C: Handles
1) With RIGHT sides together, sew along the 2 long sides. Turn right side out.

2) Press and topstitch along the 2 long sides.

PART D: Body
1) Using the 2 body exterior pieces, with RIGHT sides together, sew along the 3 edges of the square, leaving the top open. Then box the 2 bottom corners. Trim excess.

2) Using the 2 body lining pieces, with RIGHT sides together, sew along the 3 edges of the square, whilst leaving about 4" or 5" open in the middle of one side (you can choose whichever side). The top should be left open (as was done for the exterior pieces). Then box the 2 bottom corners. Trim excess. Turn right side out.

PART E: Putting the bag together
1) With RIGHT sides together, align and pin the body exterior to the body lining, making sure to insert the handles in between the layers. Sew 1/2" along the top edge making sure to backstitch on the handles.
2) Turn the bag right side out through the opening in the lining.
3) Press and topstitch the top edge.
4) Sew the opening closed (if you're not lazy like me, handstitching this step would make for better results).

Maybe you could make one for your grandmother too. Next time, I'll get pictures for the tutorial. In the meantime, hope this helps!

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