I enjoy sewing but am definitely a beginner; so fat quarter projects are a simple, fun way to get used to my sewing machine; and get creative!
And with fat quarter projects in mind, I thought I would share how I made this cute reversible tote bag. I’ve made a couple of these bags now, one as a gift, and one for myself, and they’re a fairly quick make once you have the materials ready.
Fat Quarter Projects – Reversible Mini Tote
What you need:
- 2x Fat quarters of fabric (or two pieces the same size)
- 1x Strip of coordinating fabric
- coordinating thread
- Sewing machine (or needle at least if you are making by hand)
I never measured anything accurately, but the approximate dimensions of my bag are: 27cm across with a depth of 4cm, but this is pretty flexible.
How I made my reversible tote bag
Most FQ’s are not square; so keeping the LONG length of your fabric, cut approximately 12cm or so for your sides, and put them to one side, you will have two rectangular “body” pieces of fabric,
Sides facing sew them together, leaving a gap to turn it out the right way, using a pointy tool to get the corners out.
Fold this yourself to see how much (if any) closing flap you want, vs front/back length.
Sew the side pieces together the same way, my side width is around 4cm after sewing,
Pin them in place – bearing in mind your bag is reversible; any stitching you do will be visible. I made the choice to keep the seams fairly small (about 5mm); doing all my stitching onto the darker fabric; simply because I thought it was better hidden that way, considering everything is visible.
The “hardest” part is the bottom, more because I’m pretty rubbish at sewing, and found this more awkward, but pinning the bottom of the side piece in place, sew around, and create the base of your bag….
And then of course sew up the other side to match. Now you have a bag without a strap!
I made a basic shoulder strap for my bag,; measuring out a long piece of black cotton fabric (from cutting up an older garment (recycling!!); pinning it in place to the bag to get the desired length. Then detaching it…
Check out my FQ Needle Wrap project in this post.
I then sewed up two edges together to make a big tube. And turned it in the right way, ironing flat (Very long process, unless you have a turning tool thing).I then attached my strap to the bag, sewing securely.
Nothing but honest – my stitching was a bit uneven, but I don’t think it matters all that much. I could go over it by hand to make it look tidier!
This of course means you’re done! You can add fastening at the end if you want to, either a popper or even some “hook and loop” tape would work just as well.
You can fit a surprising amount in these bags, even though they’re fairly small. And of course being plain cotton, they weigh next-to nothing, fold up really small, and if they get dirty, you can put them in the washing machine!
They are perfect for holidays
Or just every day
I’ve actually used mine a lot, and it’s quite useful to just throw in my handbag in case I need another bag when I’m out. Mostly I use it to carry around crafty stuff or a book if I’m going to a friend’s place though!
Have you made anything from fat quarters? Do you have any recommended starter projects? Share below in the comments!
What other FQ projects would you like to see me try?
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