• Craft Cotton Co

Safari Animal Print Tote Bag

Project by Michelle Roberts AKA Creative Blonde

Team this safari FQ bundle up with some solid black to make the safari fabric pop!

Please read through all the instructions before starting your project.

Finished size: 16” x 13” (not including handles)


  • 4 FQ from the Safari range - all available at Craft Cotton and Hobbycraft

  • 3 FQ of solid black fabric

  • 2 FQ of Bosal single sided fusible fleece (Two 14” x 18 and One ¾” x 20 ½”)

  • Gutermann black thread

Haberdashery items

  • Iron-away marker pen

  • Quilter’s ruler, rotary cutter/scissors

  • Iron

  • Cutting mat

  • Basic sewing supplies

Making the tote bag

  • Two 9” squares for the main panel (front and back) *

  • Four 9” x 3” black strips

  • Two 14” x 3” black strips

  • Two 14” x 7 ½” black strips

  • Two 3” x 21 ½” black strips (handles)

  • Two 1 ½” x 21 ½” tiger print (handles)

  • One 14” x 18 ½” black piece (lining)

  • One 14” x 18 ½” ginger piece (lining)

  • Two 14” x 18 ½” fusible fleece interfacing (lining)

  • One ¾” x 20 ½” fusible fleece interfacing (handles)

  • Fussy cut the 9” squares trying to keep the animal prints complete

Assembling the tote bag

Take a 9” square panel and join a 3” x 9” black strip either side, press seams towards black fabric, repeat for other panel.

Take the two 9” x 14” strips and sew to the top of each panel.

To complete the front and back panel, sew the 14” x 7 ½” strips to the bottom of each panel, press seams towards black fabric.

The front and back panels are now completed.

To create the lining, fuse the black and ginger pieces to the fusible fleece.

Making the handles

Fuse the 3/4” fusible strip to the centre of the 1 ½” animal print strip. Press over the excess fabric towards the centre and baste to hold it.

Pin the animal print to the centre of the 3” black strip and sew along each long edge of the animal piece to secure in place.

Fold the black strip right sides together and sew together using ¼” seam allowance.

Using a Clover turning tool, turn the handle right side out and press, with the outer black surround sitting evenly either side of the tiger print, repeat for the second handle.

Lay one set of handles, right sides together to the front panel of the bag, 1 ½” from outer edge, repeat with the other handle onto the back panel.

Sew a row of stiches 1/8” from raw edge.

Take the two outer pieces of the tote bag, place RST and sew down one edge, along the bottom and back up the other side using ½” seam allowance.

Repeat for the two lining pieces (place RST), this time leave a 4” gap in the bottom edge for turning through later on.

Turn outer panel right side out, and place inside the lining pieces, so right sides are together.

Pin at seams and join the two bag pieces together using ½” seam allowance along the top edges.

To create the base for your bag, pull the bottom corners out (like opening a packet of crisps) and draw a line 2in from the corner, sew along this line, and trim of excess.

Repeat this process for the remining lining corner, and on the two outer fabric corners.

Push it all through the gap and press. Hand-sew up the gap with a simple ladder stitch.

Top stitch using the Gutermann thread ¼”, all the way around the top of your bag.

To see more from Michelle, you can follow her blog www.creativeblondegifts.com, her Instagram @michelle_creativeblonde or her Facebook @creativeblonde66.

Stockist for the fabrics and Bosal fusible fleece

www.visagetextiles.com and all good crafting retailers

Stockist for Gutermann thread

gutermann@stockistenquiries.co.uk and all good crafting retailers

Stockist for Clover Tools and basting glue

www.grovesltd.co.uk and all good crafting retailers

Made by Michelle Roberts for The Craft Cotton Co 2022.

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