Wednesday, April 1, 2015

My Art Student Tote

I have another finished tote to share!

Last fall, when Priory Square came out, I know I wanted to make a tote bag out of the Sunday Clippings print. I love the flowers and the birds, it's large scale--so perfect for a tote bag.

When we were in Denver @ Fancy Tiger Crafts, I found some, along with the Art Student Tote pattern by AMH. My husband ended up getting me both for Christmas.

At first glance, I found the pattern to be very confusing, especially the pockets. But I must have been overthinking it--after I put it down for a couple months, I was able to put it all together in a weekend. This pattern is definitely doable for a beginner, but it does take some patience. I also used a glue stick to baste the straps and keep everything in place while top stitching--I don't think I could have put it together without using a bit of glue.

I really like this tote because it has so many pockets! I also like the straps on the outside, and the extension panel. It makes the bag seem more complex, and a little less hand-made, which I like. I made version C, which is the largest size. I ended up making that extension panel a bit shorter than in the pattern (only 5"), but I do like having a zipper on the top.

I also ended up using heavy-weight interfacing on the entire bag. Because it is a larger bag, I wanted it to be able to stand up. I thought the zippers and d-rings might be too heavy with a lightweight interfacing. I haven't made a lot of bags, so I'm not sure if this was the right choice yet, but so far I'm happy with it.

I was able to measure the inside drop pockets, so they're able to fit everything I need--Kindle, wallet, pens, and lots of other things I don't even have :) I love having extra pockets. This bag is quite large, so I will be able to use it as a carry-on. Back when I used to use giant bags every day, this would have been right up my alley, but now I usually use a smaller bag from day to day.

Pardon the slightly blurry photo, I think I'll blame my photographer, who doesn't know how to use my old camera
We do have a trip coming up in May, so I'm looking forward to using this for my carry-on. I think it'll also be useful for those days when I'm running errands, and carrying around more than usual.

I am happy to have finish # 6 done for the Quarter 1 Finish Along, (here's my original list) I think I'll make another bag soon, but I'm thinking of something smaller. I may make the smaller version of this pattern, as I do like the details and pockets on it, but I haven't decided yet.

 Any suggestions?


  1. Wow, that's just plain impressive. Cute fabric choices.

  2. School glue is my new sewing friend, too! Basting, hello glue! Paper-piecing? Ditto. Your bag turned out really nicely; love all the zippers, and I think you're smart to have used the heavier weight interfacing, especially as you plan to use it as a carry-on. Like your profile pic; been in that very spot a couple of times!