Handmade Birthdays: Two Super Totes (pattern by Noodlehead!)

We’ve been following Anna’s blog for a few years now; she’s a wonderfully talented and creative mamma (to two adorable little girls) who has designed some pretty fantastic patterns.  One of the first online tutorials I ever followed was her gathered clutch tutorial (here is a picture of one I made).

My parents both love to travel as well as do yoga, so I figured that Anna’s latest pattern – the super tote – would be perfect for them.  I know it may seem a bit cheesy (hopefully my parents don’t think so!) but I made them both super totes.  My original intention was to make one for my mom and then a different tote for my dad. . .but after I made the first I knew I had to make another!

So here they are: First, for my mom.

MomTote_FRONTSideBySide

The exterior fabric is Joel Dewberry sateen in Notting Hill Pristine Pop Midnight.  To be perfectly honest when I saw this fabric in the store I wasn’t sold, but as soon as I got it home I fell in love with it!  It’s heavier fabric, but lighter than home decor weight fabric.  It feels fantastic and was wonderful to work with.

The gusset fabric was actually a vintage linen that my mom gave me as part of a de-stashing effort a few years back.  It was a bit shifty so I ended up interfacing it twice, once with lightweight interfacing and then a second layer of Pellon craft fuse. Also, the handles were made from home decor weight scrap fabric I had in my stash – it actually has a slight pattern to it, but you can’t really tell in these pictures.

MomTote_TOP_SideBySide

I did opt to put in the optional recessed zipper.  This was my first experience inserting a recessed zipper, and all-in-all it was MUCH easier than I thought it would be.  Since the exterior was so busy I decided to keep the interior simple and used a coordinating red quilting cotton.

Next, who says handmade tote bags can’t be manly?

DadTote_FRONTSideBySide

I had a lot of fun designing this bag, probably more than is normal :)  I based my fabric choices around the Moda bicycle fabric that I purchased at our local fabric store, Five Eighth Seams (Little Things Organic Cream Mustard).  My dad is big into biking, so I thought this would be perfect for him!

The exterior part above the pocket and the handles are both cotton twill and the awesome plaid gusset fabric is a something I found in the discount bin at Hancock fabrics.  Honestly I’m not sure even what it is made of, but it looks and feels like some sort of suiting material.

DadTote_Interior

 

The interior of the bag and zipper panels are also made from the same Moda bicycle fabric, however unlike my mom’s bag I decided to add a bit of color and make the pockets navy blue (it’s another vintage blue fabric I scored when my mom de-stashed).

I would highly recommend this pattern to anyone – the end product is fantastic and the pattern is really well written and easy to follow.  It’s not the quickest sew, but it is completely worth it.

Now I just have to make one for myself!

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