Make a pleated tote bag
YOU WILL NEED
Main fabric: 45x112cm (18x44in) Contrast fabric: 25x70cm (10x28in) Lining fabric: 45x112cm (18x44in) Webbing for handles: 4x130cm (1$⁄"x52in)
Basic sewing kit
You will find the pleating diagram on page 96.
Use a 1.5cm ($⁄"in) seam allowance unless otherwise stated.
Use the pleating techniques and tips from the previous page.
Step one Cut the fabric as follows:
Main fabric: two pieces 41x49cm (16!⁄"x19#⁄"in) each.
Contrast fabric: four pieces 11x33cm (4#⁄"x13in) each.
Lining fabric: two pieces 41x49cm (16!⁄"x19#⁄"in) each.
MAKING THE PLEATS
Step one Place one main fabric piece right sides (RS) up. Measure and mark the placement (solid) and fold (dotted) lines on the diagram on the long top edge. Step two Fold and press the inverted pleat in the centre and the knife pleats either side and tack.
Step three Repeat this process to pleat the back.
MAKING THE OUTER AND LINING
Step one Stitch a contrast top strip RS together across the top of the pleated bag front then the back.
Step two Place the outers RS together, matching seams. Stitch together around the sides and bottom. Step three In each of the bottom two corners, draw and cut out a 5x5cm (2x2in) square.
Step four At one corner, bring the side and bottom seams RS facing and stitch together then trim.
Step five Repeat this in the other corner of the bag. Step six Gather the top edge of the bag lining pieces so they're the same length as the contrast top strip. Adjust the gathers then stitch in place to the contrast top strip with RS together.
Step seven Stitch the lining pieces RS together as for the bag outer but leaving a turning gap in the centre of one side. Box the corners as for the outer.
FINISHING THE BAG
Step one Tack the short edges of half the webbing RS together to the top of the bag outer, matching raw edges and 5cm (2in) from the side seams.
Step two Repeat on the other side.
Step three Place the lining inside the outer so they are RS together and match all seams.
Step four Stitch together around the top edge.
Step five Turn the bag RS out through the turning gap in the lining then slip stitch the gap closed.
Step six Push the lining inside the outer. Topstitch around the top edge to neaten and hold in place.