Working out a repeating pattern for my "Eat like an animal" series. Still very much a work-in-progress, but I sure am loving the bright colors. I want to turn this into a lunch tote and placemats, and maybe more.
This makes a really nice tote for any purpose, but I think it would be especially nice as a diaper bag, especially made in a fabric with the wee one's zodiac sign. It's roomy and functional with two large pockets and the quilt batting adds structure and makes the tote feel so soft and, well, kind of like a quilt!
1 yard each cotton poplin zodiac character and zodiac symbol fabrics
36 inch x 38 inch piece of batting
Small piece of Velcro or other closure if desired
plastic canvas (about 3-1/2" x 13") to reinforce the bottom of tote (kind of optional, but not really if you want your tote to be totally awesome)
Use a 1/2 inch seam allowance throughout and finish the edges as you see fit, or not (I zig-zagged mine - too lazy to figure out how to thread the serger I haven't used since God was a child).
My layout might seem a bit weird, but I set it up in a way that makes the most of the way the fabric design repeats (IMNSHO, anyway!). I used the outer fabric to line the inner pocket to make the most of the fabric, since Spoonflower only sells full yards and fat quarters. After you cut out the tote pieces, you can use the leftover fabric to make some small bags, either covered in iron-vinyl for a makeup or pencil case, or lined with PUL for snack bags (don't use the iron-on vinyl for the inside of snack bags - according to the manufacturer it contains phthalates and hasn't been tested for food safety; it's okay on the outside, though, if you want a bag that wipes clean).
Ok, let's get started!
Here are your cutting layouts:
Time to start sewing!
RS together, sew sides and bottom of outer tote fabric together.
RS together, sew BOTTOM SEAM ONLY of pocket lining.
Baste batting to WS of tote lining (the one cut from the zodiac symbol fabric), one of the pocket pieces, and one of the strap pieces. Fold the other strap piece in half lengthwise and iron to mark center with crease (note: I attached the batting to the lining instead of the outer fabric because the pockets are sewn to the lining and I wanted the extra strength of the additional layer for the pocket seams).
RS together, sew long edges of strap, and sew along both sides of crease 1/2 inch away from crease, leaving the short ends open. Cut down the center lengthwise along the crease, finish the edges, turn, and press. Zigzag open ends closed.
RS together, sew the pocket and pocket lining together (one of which has batting basted to it), leaving one side near the top open about 6 inches for turning. Clip corners, turn and press, then top stitch close to edges of SHORT ENDS ONLY.