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  • Writer's pictureCraft Cotton Co

Abbey Multi Pocket Tote Bag

Project by Angela Harkness

Take a simple tote bag up to the next level by adding pockets to the front and back and giving it structure with fusible foam and simple quilting.

Ability/skill level of project: Easy


Abbey Fat quarter fabric pack

0.5 metre of fabric for lining

0.25 metre of fabric for bag straps

Bosal In R form

Fusible foam straps on a roll


Step 1: Cut fabrics as required:

2 Pockets 18” x 18”

Bag front 18” x 15”

Bag back 18” x 15”

2 bag lining 18” x 15”

2 bag straps 42” x 4”

Step 2: Cut fusible foam as required:

2 Pockets 18” x 9”

Bag front 18” x 15”

Bag back 18” x 15”

2 foam straps 42”

Step 3: Prepare the pocket piece:

-Fold fabric in half, insert the foam and fuse with the iron

-Topstitch 1/8” along the top line of the pocket

-Quilt straight lines running across the panel, using a straight stitch and walking foot

-Repeat for second pocket piece

Step 4: Prepare the bag front and back:

-Fuse the foam to the bag pieces

- Quilt straight lines running down the panels, using a straight stitch and walking foot

Step 5: Prepare the bag straps:

-Fold and press 0.5” along the long side of each strap piece

-Wrap the strap around the foam with the turned edge running down the centre, fuse in place

-Topstitch with a decorative stitch or a basic zigzag stitch running down the centre of the strap to secure the folded edge in place

Step 6: Constructing the bag front panel:

-Align the pocket piece with the bottom edge of the front panel with raw edges matching (take note of fabric print direction)

-Position bag strap in place 5” in from each side along the bottom edge (the strap runs up from one side, makes the handle loop then returns back to the bottom)

-Pin straps in place then mark 2” down from the top of the bag on each strap

-Topstitch strap in place along each side of the strap, stopping the stitching at the marked point. Stitch an ‘X’ at the marked point to give the bag straps additional strength

Step 7: Constructing the bag back panel:

-Follow the same steps above with the second pocket piece and the back panel

Step 8: Attaching the bag lining:

-Sew the lining pieces to the bag front/back panels along the top edge

-Make sure the bag straps don’t get caught up in your seams

Step 9: Joining the front and back panels:

-Position bag front and back together with right sides facing

-Make sure the seams where the lining is attached match together, pin or clip together

-Stitch the seams all around the bag and lining pieces, leaving a turning gap in the bottom of the bag lining

Step 10: Constructing the bag base:

-Fold the bottom bag seam over to the side seam. This makes a triangle shape

-Measure 2” in from the point and mark a line across from edge to edge

-Sew along the marked line, back tacking each end for strength

-Cut away the excess triangle

-Repeat above for bag lining bottom

Step 11: Finishing off the bag:

-Turn bag through the gap in lining

-Press lining to give a faux binding effect running across the top edge of the bag

-Topstitch this in place

-Close turning gap

Your bag is complete!

To see more from Angela, visit her on Instagram @angerellas_crafts

Made by Angela Harkness for The Craft Cotton Company 2020


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