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How to make a Gardener's Tote

June 08, 2021

How to make a Gardener’s Tote

Following up on our gardener's apron, I thought it'd be nice to have a matching tote.  This sewing tutorial will walk you through making a tote perfect for gardening tools or crafting tools. 

Supplies:

  • 18" x 18" fabric for the outer
  • 18" x 18" heavier fabric for your inner lining (I used 10oz canvas)
  • 2 12" x 6" pieces of your heavier fabric for pockets
  • 1" cotton webbing cut into 2 10" pieces
  • matching thread
  • Clever Clips
  • marking pen

Instructions

1. Prepare your pocket pieces.  Fold the long edge in towards the wrong side by 1/4", press, and fold again by 1/4" and press.  Clip into place. 

2. Topstitch the long edge you just folded.  The first row of stitches will be 1/8" from the edge.  The 2nd row will be just below that.

3. Fold the other three sides in 1/4" and press.  Using your Clever Clips, or pins, clip the corners. 

4.  With a marking pen, mark your pocket lines. I marked two lines (for three pockets). Repeat steps 1-4 for the second pocket.

5. Open your outer fabric piece, and place one pocket piece on top, approximately 2.5" -3" in from the sides and about 2.5" - 3" up from the center. Pin in place.

6. Sew the pocket to the outer piece starting from the short side, going along the bottom and then up the opposite short side.  DON'T SEW ALONG THE TOP.

7. Stitch down the pocket marking lines.

8.  Repeat steps 5-7 for your second pocket, remembering to keep your pocket opening towards the top of the outer piece.

9. With right sides together, stitch the sides of both your outer fabric and lining fabric.

10.  Box the corners.  Holding your outer piece, make the corner into a triangle, with the side seam in the center.  Measure across that triangle 5" and with your marking pen, draw this line.  Repeat for the other corner and for the two corners of your lining piece.

11.  Stitch along those lines.  Trim the corner, leaving about 1/4" seam allowance.

12. Turn your lining piece right side out and place it in the out piece, matching the side seams and the boxed corners.

13. Insert you handles, one at a time.  Bend the handles so that short edges are facing up, and slide the handle between the two bag layers, eyeballing it so that each edge is about 1/3 of the way across the bag.  Clip in place with your Clever Clips.   Repeat with the other handle on the other side.

14. Starting right before one handle and using a 1/2" seam allowance, stitch around the top of the bag, going back and forth over each handle a few times.  DO NOT STITCH the bag closed; stop stitching just after you've sewn over the last handle edge.  You'll have about 4" of a gap.

15.  Pull the lining through the gap and nestle it in the outer piece. Your handles will be facing out as well.  Where the gap is not sewn, fold both the lining and outer in on themselves about 1/2".  Press. 

16.  Topstitch along the edge of the bag all the way around, closing the gap.  

VOILA!  You've made yourself a handy gardener's or crafter's tool tote!  Enjoy!

 


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