Extra Large Quilted Tote Bag

What do you think?  I decided to make a large tote bag to carry my quilting supplies in when I go to class.  My family thinks it looks like a beach bag.  O.K. – maybe I could use it for that too.  It took a while to make, as I didn’t have a pattern (go figure, why would I?).  I just had an idea – that’s all any project really needs to get started. 

This is how I did it.  I cut 2 1/2″ strips of 7 different fabrics – 11 for the front, 11 for the back, and 4 for each side.  The bottom is 8″ x 22″.  I cut 2 – 5″ x 21″ for the handles.  I also cut 2 1/2″ strips to make my bias tape for the top.  The front pockets are a  7″ x 22″ piece of material with a medium weight stabilizer as the batting and stitched to match the tote.  The inside pockets are 8″ H.  I used some leftover polyester batting and some remnants for the lining. 

The front, sides, back and bottom were each sandwiched and quilted separately 1/2″ apart vertically.  I then did my machines version of serging, using the M foot (overcast foot) on each piece all the way around.  I added a piece of batting in the handle to make it padded.  The finished tote measures 21″L x6″D x 17″H. 

I love my fabric choices and I wish I had some leftovers so I could make another one, only smaller.  I haven’t used it yet for class.  Right now it is holding a quilt top, finished and needing to be sandwiched.  I guess I best get busy!  Happy Sewing and Quilting.  Kathryn