Quilters Tote Bag Directions

From Melissa as Posted on Quiltnet

Finished size: 19+1/2" x 24"--or that's what the pattern says. I have carried a queen size quilt plus wall hanging plus miscellany. You get the picture.

1.) 54" wide upolstery fabric, 1 yard
2.) 1 yd of 54"-wide fabric for lining
3.) two pieces of 3/4" dowel, each 22" long (an old broom handle is what I used)
4.) a 9x24" piece heavy cardboard or masonite.

A.) From your upolstery fabric piece (which is 36" x 54"), cut one piece 25"X 54"(this will be the sides and bottom of the bag) and two pieces 10" x 19" (these will be end panels)

B.) Draw two lines across the large piece, across the 25" width, at 22" and 32" from one end. What you are doing here is dividing the front and back (each 25" x 22") from the bottom 10" x 25". These are fold lines ONLY; do not cut.

C.) At each 25" end of the larger piece, cut a rectangular-shaped notch, 9" wide, and 6" deep, in the center of the 25" dimension. These will be hand grips.

D.) With right sides together, sew the 10" x 19" end panels onto the front-bottom-back piece, folding on those lines, to wrap around the end panels.If you remember that the bag's bottom is 10" x 25", you can get this into the right position.

E.) Repeat the whole process with your lining fabric.

F.) Place the lining inside the tote, RIGHT sides together. Stitch along the top edges in a 1/2" seam, leaving an opening in order to turn the whole shebang right side out. Clip corners!. Turn right side out. Press. Stitch the opening closed.

G.) Fold over the top extension of the tote 2" to form a casing for the dowels. Top stitch through all layers. Slide dowels into place to form handles.

H.) Place the cardboard or masonite into the bottom so that it has a hard bottom. You can cover this with fabric if you feel fancy.

Pockets are up to you. I haven't added any yet, but they may be in my future. Also, I sewed the casings for the handles closed, so that the dowels don't slide out. Others have used little pieces of velcro so that they can remove tham to fold the bag up.