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Placemat Tote Bag Tutorial

Placemat Tote Bag Tutorial

I first made a bag like this two years ago and was just playing around. I decided I wanted to make a few modifications and did just that when I made another bag last year. Now, you get to try out my tutorial. 

This tutorial will show you how to make a 12” x 9” x 3” (approximate size) tote bag out of 2

*2 Fabric Placemats (Pictured placemats were approximately 13 inches by 18 inches.)
*Rotary cutter and mat.
*Coordinating thread
*Sewing Machine

1. Using a rotary cutter cut 4 inches off of one short side of each placemat. These pieces will become the handles. Set them aside for now.

2. Place the two large pieces right sides together with the hems of the placemats together. Pin along 3 sides leaving the hemmed edges open as this will become the top of the bag.

3. Using a straight stitch sew along the 3 sides that were pinned in the previous step using a ½ inch seam allowance. 

4. Zig-zag over any raw edges to prevent raveling.

5. Fold each bottom corner of the bag into a triangular point and pin. The same should be at the top in the middle. Stitch a straight seam 2 ½ inches from the point. Do this step for both sides of the bag while it is turned wrong side out.

6. This is what the bottom corners of your bag should look like when you turn the bag right side out.

7. To make the handles you will need the two 4 inch pieces you cut off at the beginning. Fold each piece into thirds enclosing the cut edge inside. Pin in place.

8. Stitch along the side of each handle using a straight stitch and a ¼ inch seam allowance. You want to make sure you are stitching along the side that has an opening.

Placemat Tote Bag Tutorial

9. Pin the handles to the top of the bag. One handle centered on each side approximately 4 inches from each side seam. 

10. Using a straight stitch sew back and forth at least three times per handle and then use a zig-zag stitch for good measure. You want the handles to be secure.

11. To make a sturdy base for your bag you can cut a piece of cardboard to a size of approximately 8 ½ inches x 2 ½ inches. (Measure the bottom of your bag for an accurate size.)

12. Cover the cardboard with duct tape for durability and place it in the bottom of your bag.

Placemat Tote Bag Tutorial


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