One of the items on my YOP list was to make a new work tote.
Recently I wrote how I found a free pattern on Craftsy for the Tiki Tote.
I thought this would be a great way to stash bust.
This week, I had time to complete the bag!
I finished sewing my panels (eight in total).
Unfortunately, one of my panels was off a little in size so instead of my panels cutting to 5.5″ wide, mine are 4.5″.
I started with cutting the bottom as indicated in the pattern:
Then I lined this up to the top of the cutting mat and cut one side:
Then I decided which portions I wanted in my 15″ length and for each panel I ended up cutting one inch off the bottom.
Then I measured 15″ and cut the top of the panel:
Then I cut the remaining side:
Seems a bit labor intensive I know, but it was the only way I could wrap my brain around making the panels all the same size.
It is a shame that one panel was wonky, as losing an inch on each panel made for a more narrow bag.
If I had extra of all the material, I would have made additional panels, but I completely used all of two of the colors.
For my handles, I remembered a trick for turning them inside out-a simple stitch holding a piece of scrap fabric inside the handle made pulling it through and turning the handle right side out very easy.
I asked my daughter to pick which fabric she recommended for the top border and she chose “the crazy one Mama”.
I also added a border to the bottom to extend the length of the bag.
I then used those same materials to make the handles.
Items not shown are the fusible fleece used for both the bag and the handles, my much loved 1/4″ foot and my iron (very much needed to make it look neat).
I also used stash fabric for the lining (purchased at a “fill a bag for $8.00” at my sewing studio spring clean out).
Here is my Tiki Tote!
(Where else will you use Cow Fabric??)
(Forgive the threads, I swear I don’t see them until I look at the pictures)
Things I wish I did:
- Made extra panels to make it wider.
- Paid more attention sewing my panels-I just sewed from the pile of panels and I wish I didn’t have some of the same pattern touching side by side.
- MEASURED my lining before sewing the outer bag. Duh, I forgot that my panels were smaller and I didn’t initially adjust the size of the lining-I got VERY lucky when doing the math and recutting the lining.
- Remembered my handle trick for the first handle-remembered it when sewing the second handle (insert eye roll here).
- Top stitched my handles before completing the bag (I suppose I could still do that).
All in all, I am very pleased with how it turned out!
This was a fun project and I recommend it (well written pattern and there is a video tutorial at Midnight Quilter).
Have a great week!