Sewing Attempt #2: Mini Tote Bag

Did I mention that I am a school teacher?  No, well that is what my profession is.  I teach band – please no jokes I’ve heard them all.  I teach students in junior or senior high school, well until the end of the last school year anyway.  Currently, I do not have a full time teaching job, but if you need a band sub than I am your gal.  The reason I bring all this up is because today most of my friends, who are of course teachers, went back to school while I went to pick up groceries.  I was quite discouraged about the whole thing and was in quite a mood for the morning.  After getting home and putting a months worth of groceries away I decided to take a trip to the local fabric store to take in the colors and textures to see if that would make me feel any better.

So off I went.  The store I went to is in the process of moving.  SO EVERYTHING MUST GO!  They are having a good sale on things, almost everything is 60-70% off.  It is a bit of a mess in there and every time I go, it seems to get a bit worse.  But it did make me feel better.  Seeing all the colors and thinking about what would go with what put me immediately in better spirits – who would have thought.  I started to envision these wonderful things I could do with the fabric.  It was wonderful.


“Ferb, I know what we are going to do today,” popped right into my head (a quote from a silly kid’s tv show) and I rushed home to my remnant pile of practice fabric.  I decided that I would try to create the MINI TOTE that was featured in Lexi Barnes book Sew What! Bags which funny enough didn’t even cross my mind while creating the title of my blog – I hope I won’t get into trouble, honest didn’t put two and two together.

I read all the instructions, pressed my fabric so I could start properly and started to cut.  Is the rotary cutter always this hard?  I honestly would have thought that it, paired with the ruler would make cutting a whole lot easier.  Maybe I just don’t know the tricks to it.  My lines were not straight at all… what a nightmare.  But I decided I wasn’t going to let it stop me at all.  I got it all cut out, pressed again and was ready to start sewing up a storm.  Once again straight lines seem to give me trouble and I just have to figure out the best way to guide the fabric through the machine in a straight line and let it do the rest.  I was cruising along and then hit step 5.  And for the life of me couldn’t figure out how to add an edge seam to the inside out bag.  I tried a few different ways and finally resolved that I was going to have to ask Anne or Paula for help.

Nate came home at that point and I showed him my tote, with crocked lines and all and told him about my problem… ya’ know what?  He knew how to fix it and he showed me.  So I finished the bag and made us dinner.  Maybe tomorrow I’ll attempt a small tote?

Mini Tote 1

Learned today:

Straight lines, cutting or sewing, are not my friends.  Back to more practice.



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3 responses to “Sewing Attempt #2: Mini Tote Bag

  1. evie

    Think you are doing great. I didn’t mind sewing in home ec, but loved cooking more! We had to sew a seam on a treadle machine when I started. I couldn’t get it to go right, so I turned my fabric around and sewed the seam in reverse!! I’m glad we had electric to work on.

  2. Bec

    Yeah, that rotary cutter is a PITA to get the hang of, but once you do–it’s a lifesaver! Keep practicing, you’ll get the hang of it soon! 🙂

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