Ease Into The Summer (Tote) With A Video Demonstration
Lazies, A video demonstration of our Summer Tote bag pattern (LGD122) is now airing at www.KayeWoodTV.com. For a quick reference, I keep a page at my website with links to all of the videos that are playing.
Summer Tote shown in beautiful fabrics by Laurel Burch. Yum!
Fused Quilter’s Canvas
I tried something new with the Summer Tote. Actually, I always try to include a special feature or technique in my designs. For Summer, I made ‘canvas’ from the fabrics by fusing two layers together. The end result is a thin two-sided fabric with strength, stability and a nice drape. And it feels as good as it looks.
Start Big And Trim
I begin with fabric larger than I need, fuse two layers together, then trim just a bit to ensure that the fabrics are fused all the way to the edges. That means the fabric won’t fray and is essentially ‘finished’ on the cut edges. Pretty cool.
Because of the way this fused quilter’s canvas behaves at the cut edges, there is no need to further finish the cut pieces, and that affects the construction of the bag.
All of this makes the Summer Tote lightweight, thin rather than bulky, durable and functional.
The front and back of the bag are the two main walls of the project. The pockets and handles are attached to these walls, then the walls of the bag meet at the zipper with an easy installation, and the side and bottom seams for a simple and quick construction.
Summer Tote Features
Featuring a zippered top, inside pockets and outside pockets, I designed the Summer Tote to be a work horse. The back pocket is taller than the front, and it’s set-up to hold a file folder or magazine, pens/pencils and keep your cell phone or other necessity handy. The shorter front band of pockets is ideal for lots of little things.
Each part of the Summer Tote project can be cut from a fat quarter of fabric. In fact, I did a whole post about working with fat quarter bundles and how to use them with the Summer Tote here.
Because the construction is designed to work with fabrics that don’t need to be finished on the edges or are sturdy on their own, consider using ultra suede, pre-quilted cottons, upholstery weight fabrics or other vinyl/leather like materials.
Be mindful of the fabrics you choose for pockets and handles, making sure they don’t add too much bulk to the construction at the side seams. Or leave the pockets off altogether to showcase a specialty material.
Big, Bold Prints
Summer is ideal for using big, bold coordinating prints. I used only two fabrics to make the Asian inspired Summer Tote featured here.
I like working with Steam-A-Seam 2 fusible web for this project. Any products marked ‘lite’ are probably too light. Anything marked ‘heavy’ is going to be too much and probably difficult to sew through later in the project. One of the nice features of Steam-A-Seam 2 is that both sides of the fusible web is a bit sticky or tacky. That helps in positioning the fusible between the layers of fabric.
For more information, view the back of the Summer Tote pattern here.
[tags]zippered tote, tote bag pattern, sewing pattern[/tags]