Thursday, June 25, 2015

Sew-Along #26 - Sun & Surf Tote - Lesson 2

The Sun & Surf Tote by Modkid

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Welcome to Day 2 of the Modkid Sun & Surf Tote Sew Along.  Today we are going to get started constructing the tote.  We will get several steps done today, so hang in there and it will really start to look like a tote by the end of the lesson.  

Note for Laminates: I used a non-stick foot for sewing on my tote when using the laminate.  It is very simple to sew once you have the foot installed.  

Our first step in making the tote is to measure and cut a triangle out of the 4 main pieces (2 outer and 2 inner).  I measured and drew my lines on one piece, then stacked them and cut them all at once.  But you can certainly cut them one at a time if you prefer.

First you will measure in 3" from each edge of the main piece along the long edge and mark your piece.  I use the FriXion gel pens because they "erase" when you heat them, so ironing over the marks makes them disappear.  For marking on the laminates, I used chalk.  

Then, mark the center of the main panel along the same long edge.  Measure down 3" from the center mark and mark again.  

Now connect the dots.  

Once you have your triangle marked, if you want to cut them all at once, carefully stack your front and back pieces so that they are exactly even in a pile.  Then cut along the marked lines you made to remove the triangle pieces.  

Set all except for one lining piece aside for now.  We will now attach the inner pocket to one of the lining pieces.  

Note for Laminates: You do not want to use pins through your laminates because it will cause a permanent hole in them.  I use wonder clips for clipping my pieces together.  The laminate holds pretty well without anything when it is right sides together because the plastic coating doesn't slide on itself.  

Take your inner pocket pieces and place them right sides together.  I like to mark my 2" space on one edge so that I don't forget and sew it all the way around.  

Sew the two inner pocket pieces together using a 1/2" seam allowance, starting at one mark and sewing around to the other mark.  

Once your seam is sewn, clip the corners of you inner pocket (careful to not cut through your stitching). 

Now, turn the piece right sides out through the hole you left in the bottom.  I like to use a corner tool or a chopstick to gently push my corners out.  

Note for Laminates: Finger press your pocket flat. Do NOT use an iron.

Press your pocket piece so that it lays nice and flat.  Then topstitch along one long edge, 1/2" from the top.  

Place the pocket piece on the right side of one lining piece, centering it, and pin the pocket in place.    

Note for laminates: For this step, I just relied on the sticky nature of the laminate fabric to hold it in place.  So I did not pin or clip the pocket to the lining piece.  I also used chalk instead of pen to draw my lines.  It wipes off easily once the line is sewn.  

Mark a line 4" from the side edge of the pocket to divide the pocket into 2.  

Sew the pocket to the lining piece along the 2 sides and bottom edge of the pocket, stitching 1/8" from the edge of the pocket.  Then sew along the dividing line. 

If you used the FriXion pen, press over your line to remove the markings.  

Great, done with that!  Set the lining piece aside and we will work on the outer pockets.  

Sew one interfaced pocket piece to one non-interfaced piece, rights sides together.  Repeat for the remaining pocket pieces.  Note for Laminates: Your pieces will not be interfaced. Instead, sew one Outer Pocket piece to one Outer Pocket Lining piece, right sides together.  Repeat.

I iron the piece open (just finger press for laminates) and then fold it wrong sides together and press again.  Once it is pressed, topstitch the folded edge (1/2" from edge).

Pin (or Wonder Clip for laminates) the outer pocket to the outer main tote piece.  Repeat for the other outer pocket and main tote piece.  

Baste the pocket pieces to the main tote pieces along the side and bottom using a 1/8" seam allowance.  Them mark a line 6.5" from each side to mark the outer pocket dividers.  

Stitch along the lines you marked.  If using the FriXion pen, iron to remove the marks.

Now, you will take the two completed outer tote pieces and lay them right sides together. Sew the outer pieces together along the sides and bottom using a 1/2" seam allowance.

In the bottom corners of the outer main panel (opposite of the cut out triangle) mark a 3"x3" square.  

Very precisely cut the square you drew out of the main pieces.

Open up the square you just cut and match your side seam and your bottom seam, pressing the opposite corners of the square flat.  This will create the box bottom of the bag.  

Wonder Clip (or pin) the seam you just flattened and sew across it (remove the clips before you get to them though!) using a 1/2" seam allowance. 

Now you are going to repeat the process of sewing the lining panels together and creating the box bottom with your lining pieces.  

VERY IMPORTANT: When sewing your lining pieces, leave an 8" opening in the bottom seam to turn your bag through.  

Sew the side seams and bottom seam (leaving 8" open on the bottom) then measure and cut your 3" squares.

Match your side and bottom seams.  

Note for laminates: Use Wonder Clips, rather than pins, for these steps.  

Pin the seam flat and sew using a 1/2" seam allowance.

PHEW! That was a lot, but the longest day and you are DONE!  The next lesson will create the loop for the button, sew in the lining and attached the grommets, then make the strap and finish up the bag! 

See you next time. 


* If you would like to earn entries into the prize drawing, please make sure to submit a photo of your completed lesson two to this Facebook Album by 12:00 noon CST, Monday, June 29th. If you have any questions the Facebook Group is a great place to ask.

Happy Sewing,
Danielle Storm  

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