Shabby Chic Tote Bag Completed

I finished many projects over the weekend and can't wait to share all of them. The first one completed is a tote bag that a work colleague wanted me to create for her. She had seen mine that I had created from some fabric samples and wanted one too.
I didn't have any of this left but my work colleague said that she had some fabric leftover from a small reupholstery that she had completed.

A Shabby Chic rose pattern with a coordinating red and white ticking. Just by looking at it, I knew that there was plenty for a very nice tote bag,although I needed a pattern to follow.So I found an old dusty and dirty tote bag in my closet and pulled it apart.
It was very easy to take apart only two seams on both sides and top. It became the perfect template for my new tote bag.

With a little dressmakers chalk I marked 3" in from both sides. This would be the pattern for striped fabric. Next I cut the rose and striped fabric just over (1/2") the sizes above to accommodate for seam allowances. Then I sewed them together.
Folded,Ironed and sewed the edge on both ends by folding over 1/2" twice. Then sewed up the sides to create the bucket of the tote.

For the straps, I intended to take a 3" piece and fold in half and topstitch. But when I actually laid it out and ironed it, they looked to narrow for such a large bag. I had to change the design but for the better. I took a strip of both fabrics and sewed them together like a tube.

I placed the old tote bag straps on top of the pieces to use as my guide and to make sure I sewed straight since this was for someone else I wanted it to be perfect. Turned the straps inside out and then attached to the bucket, making sure to double stitch so they are secure. And it was done!

I finished it off with a fabric covered button in the ticking and it is now ready for numerous summer uses. It was a easy project that took about 3 hours to complete since I was working completely from scratch and basically creating the pattern as I went along. Next time it should go a little quicker if the opportunity arrises,but for now it is one more project that can be moved to the completed side of my project list. But most importantly the work colleague is ecstatic and can't wait to use it!


  1. That is lovely! I sometimes take a tote bag and add pockets and embellishments to it, that way I get to do the fun stuff right away! Love your color and fabric combination, very sweet.


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