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  • Writer's pictureCraft Cotton Co

Tropicana Beach-to-Bar Bag Tutorial

Liven up your outfit with this vibrant fun Tropicana bag. Perfect for summer days, shopping or the beach. Get your Tropicana fat quarters here!

You will need:

  • Cotton fabrics:

  • Centre Front panel 60cm wide x 40cm tall

  • Centre Side panel 80cm wide x 40cm tall

  • Side panel 80cm wide x 40cm tall

  • Lining: ½ m x 110cm wide

  • Plated straps: 3 strips of fabric at 8cm x 1 m or 2-3cm wide ribbon

  • Medium weight cotton iron on interfacing: ½ m of 110cm wide (available from

  • Prym 14mm metal eyelets with washers (available from

  • 1 magnetic bag fastener (available from

  • Matching thread

  • Sewing machine

  • Approx 75 cm x 2 of decorative trims (optional)

Step 1:

Cut out the fabric and lining panels

Transfer the dart markings to the lining panels only (not the outer panel 2) at this stage.

Cut out the Interfacing panels

Cut three strips of contrasting fabric at 8cm by 65cm for the plaited handles or 65cm of ribbon, tape or rope.

Step 2:

Making the outer bag:

Iron the interfacing on to the wrong side of the outer bag panels.

Now use the panel 2 pattern piece to transfer the markings for the darts into the interfacing side of panel 2.

Sew the darts on panel 2 and press towards the centre.

Cut trims to fit along the seams of the outer bag panels.

Step 3:

Baste the trims in place along each edge of panel 2- stitch approximately half a centimetre from the edge of the fabric.

Step 3:

With right sides together join panel 3 to panel 2 and then panel 2 to panel 1 then repeat for the opposite side to complete the front of the bag.

Press the seams towards panel 2 and topstitch to hold on place.

Repeat with the remaining panels to complete the back of the bag.

Step 4:

Making the lining:

Sew the darts in the 1 lining pieces.

Iron a small piece of interfacing onto the wrong side of the lining to strengthen it.

Step 5:

Insert a magnetic fastening into the lining.

Optional: Make a patch pocket by cutting a rectangle of fabric, pressing in the 3 side edges and then pressing over the top edge as a double fold.

Step 6:

Stitch along the top edge then pin the patch pocket in place on the lining and stitch around the 2 sides and the bottom to secure the pockets in place.

Step 7:

Making up the bag:

Position the front outer and front lining with right sides together aligning the top edges carefully and stitch all along the top of the bag to secure the outer to the


Repeat for the back outer and lining panels.

Clip the corners and snip into the curved seam.

Step 8:

Open out the front and back joined panels and place 1 on top of the other with right sides together (lining to lining and outer to outer)

Step 9:

Align the seams and the outer edges then stitch together leaving a hand sized gap in the lining.

Step 10:

Slip into the curved seem all the way around the bag outer and lining.

Turn bag the right way out through the gap in the lining.

Press, taking care to roll the lining towards the inside of the bag at the top opening.

Step 11:

To make the straps:

You may choose to use ribbon, rope or tape for the handle or

To make a plaited handle:

Take your strips of fabric, fold each one over by one third of the total width and press.

Next fold over the other 3rd to cover the first then tuck under approximately 1cm of the exposed raw edge and press.

Step 12:

Zigzag stitch over the folded edge down the centre along the full length of the strip.

Layer the strips one on top of the other and stitch together at one end only.

I used 2 strips of folded fabric and one strip of ribbon.

Using a large bulldog clip attach the joined strips to something heavy and begin plaiting fairly tightly.

Step 13:

When you reach the end again lay the three strips on top of each other and stitch together and trim.

Next insert large eyelets following the instructions on the packaging – you can buy these 14 mm silver eyelets from our online shop (link at bottom).

Thread the plat from front to back through the eyelet and handstitch to secure. Cover the join with some ribbon and hand stick this in place.

Ta-Da! You now have a wonderful beach-to-bar worthy Tropicana bag!

For more from Crafty Sew and So, visit their blog here

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