Pocket tote bag

Friday, March 05, 2010

*Holding my breath as I write this...the computer might crash!*

Well as I mentioned in a previous post, life has been ticking along, even if my computer hasn't, and I have a bunch of things I've been wanting to blog about but haven't been able to.

So here is the first one...

I had had an idea for a tote bag with a pocket on the front that would allow it to be tucked into itself so it could be stored in my handbag when not in use. I know this is not a 'new' idea, but it's not something I've seen around so I thought I had to give it a go anyway. So one night I got to work and whipped something up. As well as anything else, this is also the first time I have made a tote, so it was a good learning experience for me. Here is the end result:

So, it's pretty basic and I just used things I had round the house to make it. I made the tote bag by looking at other tote bags I had as I didnt have a pattern to hand. The corners at the base are pinched and sewn so it has a bit of width to the bag - good for storing extra stuff! When I was making it I wasn't 100% sure how the pocket was going to work - I initially thought I would turn the pocket inside out and tuck everything into it, so I made the pocket lined. As the bag developed I figured I didnt need to.

I added a nice big button to the front of the pocket and attached a long faux suede loop (which used to be a broken necklace I never got round to fixing!) and when the bag is 'open' this hooks over the top to the back....

...and gets hooked round a small button on the back. The only button I had that matched the front one and the bag was pretty small. If I were to make this again I would use a bigger button. But this one still works.

To pack the bag away you fold in the sides the the size of the pocket, fold in the straps and then fold it all into the pocket (whoops, I should have taken photos of this!). You then wrap the loop around the pocket/folded bag and around the big button. End result is a neatly folded away bag ready to pop into your handbag and be used for your next impromptu shopping trip!

So what would I change:
1. As I mentioned before, the button on the back is just a little bit too small, so I would use a bigger one.
2. I think the pocket is perhaps a bit big, so when it's all folded up it's still quite a big thing to carry around in your handbag - I have quite a big handbag so it's ok for me...but probably not for everyone.
3. Finally, the fabric I used for the bag (the spotty stuff) is very thin and I'm nervous it might not stand up to a serious amount of heavy shopping going into it. But it was all I had to hand when I was making it. Again, if I were to make this another time, I would use a stronger fabric. Saying that....it DID survive a trip to the Asia Supermarket where I bought a tonne of stuff:


P.S. See those noodles packed into the top of my bag? They are the BEST!! I grew up in Indonesia and these are the Indonesian version of Super Noodles and they are 100x better and tastier. If you are ever in an Asian Supermarket look out for Indo Mie noodles (mie is the Indonesian word for noodles...who would have thought!) and give them a go - they are AWESOME! (oh and they usually only cost abot 30p a packet - bargain!)

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