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Rag Quilted Tote or Shopping Bag with Accessories

The gorgeous fabric for this project was found at Ikea (in Germany) and you only need about 1 meter (about 1 yard) to complete the whole set (tote, cosmetic pouch and key ring). The fabric itself is very durable so the tote can really hold a lot without weakening out. Because the fabric is so sturdy and thick, batting is omitted for the tote. The tote was was created using 68 blocks of fabric (34 double blocks), each measuring 12 centimeters. The finished tote (without the handles measures 40 cm wide by 30 cm high)



Rag Quilt Tote Bag

For this project you will need:

- 1 meter of 140 cm wide sturdy fabric of choice (here from Ikea)
- 2 strips of 65 cm long and 5 cm wide batting for the tote handles
- button for the flap
- sharp scissors like these from Fiskars (right)
- sewing machine and sewing supplies
- thread to match fabric (black was used for this tote)
- quilters ruler

Ikea Fabric for the Tote
Sample of fabric used

Fiskars Scissors with Spring
Scissors used


1. Follow steps 1-5 of the rag quilt tutorial to create 34 rag quilt blocks. For each block you will need 2 squares of fabric, sewn together with both right sides on the outside and the left sides inside.
2. Once you have your blocks sewn, assemble them together following the chart below. Each pink block represents a quilt block. For the front side of the tote, first sew together 4 blocks in a row. Complete a second row and then sew it to the first row, aligning the blocks perfectly. Then complete a third row in the same manner and sew it to the second row.
3. Set this aside and repeat again for the other side of the tote.
4. For the bottom and sides, you will need to sew 10 blocks of fabric into a row. Then take the front side and sew this part to the middle of the 10 block row, as seen in the diagram. Do the same for the other tote side. When laying flat, the blocks will look just like the diagram below.
5. Now you will sew the sides together as the arrows show in the diagram. Now the tote can stand on its own. The top edge needs to remain open for the next step.

Rag Quilt Tote Pattern

6. Now the tote needs handles and a flap to close. For the handles, cut four 7 cm wide and 65 cm long strips of fabric and two strips of batting measuring 5 cm wide and 65 cm long. Take one fabric strip and place it on the table with the right side down. Place a strip of batting in the center of the fabric and then place a sescond strip of fabric with the right side facing up over the batting. Pin the layers together and then sew horizontal lines down the length of the handle to hold the layers together. Now repeat again for the other two strips of fabric and batting. Once your handles are finished, insert the first handle in the two top outer squares of one side of the tote and pin each end in place. Now repeat for the other handle and the other side of the tote.

7. Now the flap needs to be made. Cut two 5 cm wide and 15 cm long pieces of fabric. Sew them together on the long sides using a 1 cm seam allowance. Create a button hole for one end to fit the button you will be using. Pin the other end to the inside of the middle top of one side of the tote.
8. Now you can sew the top edge of the tote, making sure to catch all of the handles and closing flap.
9. Once you are finished you can now snip all of the seam allowances at 1 cm intervals.
10 Wash the tote to get a fuzzy look.

Illustrated Craft Tutorial:

Rag Quilt Americana Tutorial

 Rag Quilt Tutorial


Rag Quilt Tote Bag - Example 2
This is another example of the same tote using a different fabric (also from Ikea).





A Selection of Summer Textile Crafts

Patchwork Wall Picture

Patchwork Wall Hanging

Patchwork Butterfly Quilt / Wallhanging

Quilt Block for Independence Day

Country Fabric Scraps Wreath

Purse Organizer or Purse Tissue Holder

Fabric Organizer with Zipper

Rag Quilt “Americana”

Rag Quilt Tote or Shopping Bag

Felt Clutch or Cosmetic Bag

Rag Quilt Tote Bag



More Craft Themes:

Summer Crafts for Kids

Summer Paper Crafts

Summer General Crafts

Summer Wood Crafts

Summer Textile Crafts

Birthday and Greeting Cards

Patriotic Crafts

Maritime Crafts

Summer Templates, Patterns and Coloring Book Pages





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