Updated September 2011

The Twenty Minute Tote | Purl Soho

We have remade these awesome, simple bags for fall! This time around, I used a gorgeous new collection of upholstery weight cotton called Outside Oslo. These bold, stylish prints are sophisticated without being serious and come in a rich palette of colors perfect for fall. I added some sturdy contrasting cotton webbing handles for a pop of color, and I love the way they came out! The new materials are as follows:

To make one tote bag:

  • 1/2- yard of Outside Oslo Fabric. I used (clockwise from top left): Dawn Frond, Dawn Sticks, Dusk Wildflower,  and Dawn Picket
  • 2 yards of 1-inch cotton webbing to compliment your fabric. I used (clockwise from top left): Taupe, Turquoise, Turquoise, and Yellow.
  • Cotton thread to match your fabric
  • Cotton thread to contrast with the inside of the bag

Updated February 2011

The Twenty Minute Tote | Purl Soho

These totes really do come together in 20 minutes a piece which makes them a great, quick, way to add a little Springtime color and excitement into the dull end of Winter months. To make one tote bag:

  • 1/2-yard of Kokka Apples. I used Pink Mini Apples, Orange Mini Apples, Blue Mini Apples, and Green Large Apples
  • 2 yards of 1-inch cotton webbing to compliment your fabric. I used Natural, Yellow, Turquoise, and Green
  • Cotton thread to match your fabric
  • Cotton thread to contrast with the inside of the bag

The Original

The fabric in these how to shots is from Echino and is now out of print but you can see more from the same designer, Etsuko Furuya here.

 Cutting

The Twenty Minute Tote | Purl Soho

Cut two 16-inch tall by 14-inch wide panels from the fabric. Make sure the pattern is going the correct direction on both panels.

Cut two 22 1/2-inch long pieces from the webbing.

Attaching Handles and Hemming the Top

The Twenty Minute Tote | Purl Soho

Pin the handle pieces to the top raw edge of the right side of each panel 3-inches from the sides. The raw edges of the handles should match up with the raw edge of the top of the panel so the handles will be facing down as shown in the picture above. Make sure the handles aren’t twisted.

The Twenty Minute Tote | Purl Soho

Using the contrasting thread sew a zig zag stitch across the  top edge, sewing the handle to the top edge in the process.

The Twenty Minute Tote | Purl Soho

This zig zag stitch should be right at the edge of the fabric as shown above.

The Twenty Minute Tote | Purl Soho

Turn the panels so their wrong sides are facing up. Press and pin their top edges with the handles down 1 1/2-inches

The Twenty Minute Tote | Purl Soho

Make sure to pin the handle so it’s perpendicular to the horizontal sides.

The Twenty Minute Tote | Purl Soho

Sew this fold down with the matching thread a 1/4 inch from to top edge and then with a second seam 1/4-inch from the bottom zig zag stitch.

The Twenty Minute Tote | Purl Soho

The handle will now be attached and the top hem sewn down on both panels. You’re now ready to sew the bag together.

Sewing the Bag Together

The Twenty Minute Tote | Purl Soho

Pin the panels right sides together and sew along the sides and bottom 1/2-inch from the raw edges using the matching thread. Back stitch at the beginning and end of each seam.

Snip off the bottom corners.

The Twenty Minute Tote | Purl Soho

Using the contrasting thread zig sag stitch along the raw edges of the sides and bottom of the bag.

The Twenty Minute Tote | Purl Soho

Make sure to stitch right along the edge to contain the threads from the raw edges.

The Twenty Minute Tote | Purl Soho

Turn the bag right sides out press the corners and you’re all done!