Regular readers will know that I have teaching myself to to sew (better) by tackling simple projects. One thing I've been dying to master is the tote bag. So fantastic to carry all those groceries, library books, art materials, knitting stuff, clothes, food for the park, everything! This is the third tote I've made, if you count the tiny one I made for my daughter's moose toy (he is very fashionable).
The great news is that they are very simple and very rewarding. Yesterday I made a couple in this fabric, one to use as wrapping for a gift to add a bit of handmade love.
There are some fantastic tutorials out there on the craft web. I usually like to read a few and take the bits I like from each, sort of how I use recipes. Here are some simple diagrams I drew to keep beside me as I sew, so I remember the steps.
One thing I learned early on is don't sew the handle straps inside out and then try to turn them right way out. This makes a simple project an exercise in frustration. I like them sewn on the outside anyway, they seem sturdier.
Next I might try a lined bag and some different shapes, I love those pleated totes, or even this tea towel/dishtowel pattern. Oh, and the pieces I started with were about 38cm x 45cm if you're going to try this at home. It's sort of long but I think I like it that way.