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Extra Large Quilt Tote

 

Supplies needed

Decorator fabric 1 ½ yards by 45 inches

Size 14 needle                    Hem gauge or similar                  Frixion pen or other erasable marking tool

Pinking scissors, if you have them

 

Prepare fabric

Fold fabric in half selvages to folded edge and trim both ends.

Open fabric out and refold it so the selvage edges are on both sides and your freshly trimmed edges are the top. You will cut off about 4 inches plus the selvage edge on sides of the fabric for the two straps. You may need to trim more if the selvage is big, but you should end up with two pieces of 4 inch by about 56 inch fabric. This is the length of your fabric.

 If your fabric is 54 inches wide you will want to trim an additional 10 inches from just one edge. You could use this to make a pocket in the front or ? ? ? ? ? ?

 

Straps

Turn under about ½ inch and then another ½ inch on both ends of the straps. Press and then stitch both ends. This finishes the ends.

 Now fold the  strap in half the long way and press. Open it up and press about ½ under on both edges. Press again , it’s OK if you lose the center press line as you won’t need it again. Now fold the long strap in half matching the edges and give one more press. This may seem like a lot of pressing, but it will make your future sewing faster and much more accurate. Edge stitch around the whole strap using your Size 14 needle. I use 3.0 setting on my machine. Repeat for the other strap.

Top hems

Using the short side edges of the bag hem the top edges by turning under ½ inch pressing and then turn under about 1 inch and press again. Do both edges this way and then edge stitch (3.0) once again.

Attach straps

Place bag on table with two finished edges at the top. Go in from each side (unfinished edges) about 10 inches and place a line of marking. This should be about 13 to 14 inches long.

Fold each strap in half and put a line about 14 inches from the center of each strap. Place that line on the top edge of your finished hems.

Open bag all the way so you are only working on one layer. Place strap on bag. Put the line you marked on the strap at the top hemmed edge of the bag on both sides. You will use the lines you drew 10 inches in from unfinished edges as your placement guide. I like to place the folded edge of the strap going to the center of the bag, but it’s your choice. Pin and then back to the old top stitching. Try to stitch where you stitched before. The bag police will not come get you if you get off a bit. To add a bit more strength to the strap stitch down the middle of the strap.

Now you need to sew an X on both the top and the bottom of the strap so that sucker won’t go anywhere.  Attach the other strap in the same way. You are in the home stretch now.

If you had extra fabric then you would add a pocket at this stage of the game.

Side seams

You will be making French seams (no need to speak French).

Place wrong sides of fabric together. Let me say that one more time. Put the WRONG sides of the fabric together. Trust me here. Stitch about ½ inch and trim to ¼ with your pinking scissors if you have them. Fold the seam the opposite way so the right sides are together like you are used to. You need to finger press this edge flat. Stitch about ½ inch or a bit more. You have to be sure you have enclosed the previously stitched seam. Now all those nasty raw edges are enclosed and protected from raveling.

Boxing the bottom

Now doesn’t this sound fun? Turn the bag inside out and press the bag in half so you have a crease all the way across the very bottom. 

At the bottom of the bag you will place the seam edge on top of the crease you pressed in. Make sure the seam matches the crease up about 3 inches. Make a dot up 4 ½  inches on each side and then draw a line to connect the dots. Do you remember how much fun that used to be?  Stitch on that line and then using a zig zag stitch you will stitch just below that line. Trim off extra fabric.  Repeat for the other side. I’ll bet you guessed that part all by yourself.

Closures for top edge

You can use Velcro or make buttonholes evenly places across the top to keep your bag closed. And of course you’ll need some buttons. You could also use snaps or ??????????

 

 

That’s all folks! Carry your quilts to show and tell safely and cleanly.

This bag is big enough that you could carry an 18 by 24 cutting mat easily with lots of room left over for other good stuff.