Today we’re taking the next step making our Sew South Tote Bag which is pocket construction.
If you missed the first post in this tutorial, click here for Sew South Tote Part 1.
Now, I like my pockets to be roomy and large enough to hold things but not so big that everything in the pocket swims around and gets lost.
That’s why I think the two pockets in this bag are the perfect size. One is large and square and the other is divided into two parts so you can slide your phone in one side and your keys in the other.
The rectangular divided pocket is called the SMALL pocket and the square pocket is the LARGE pocket.
Tote Bag Pattern
- Place the small pocket front piece (G) and small pocket lining piece (H) right sides together. Line up the bottom edges. Sew along the sides and bottom with a ¼” seam allowance.
- Turn the pocket right side out, gently poking out the corners. There should be 1” of lining extending above the pocket front piece.
- Fold the lining over ½” so the raw edges meet.
- Fold again, a ½” over the top of the pocket and press. This creates a band.
- Topstitch along the bottom and top of the band.
- Repeat steps 1-3 for the large pocket (pieces E,F.)
Attaching the pockets:
- Fold the small pocket in half and crease to mark the center. Place it on a lining panel and center it so it is 5” down from the top and 4.75” in from each side. Pin the pocket in place.
- Topstitch along the sides and bottom with a ¼” seam allowance and a ⅛” seam allowance.
- Sew a double row of stitches down the center of the pocket from just beneath the band. Be sure to backstitch at the beginning and end.
- Place the large pocket on the other lining panel and center it so it is 4” down from the top and 4” in from each side. Pin in place.
- Topstitch along the sides and bottom with a ¼” seam allowance and a ⅛” seam allowance. Be sure to backstitch at the beginning and end.
Now that your pockets are in place, we can take a break!
Be sure to check back on Monday for the last installment of this tutorial. We’ll assemble the bag and add the handles.
Don’t forget to tag #sewsouthtote on social media and @ellisonlane so I can see your progress!
Once our tote is finished we’ll move on to some other great handmade bag tutorials. I love traveling handmade!