Friday, August 26, 2011

the Classic Wine Tote

Ok ladies... Time to get serious. Serious about vino.
You know you always have times when you need to bring a bottle a wine- party, wedding shower, sweet date at the park (ok, I'm a hopeless romantic).

Here's the how-to:
(Or Here is a video: Classic Wine Tote)
Start with 3 coordinating fabrics. Make two 12"x 15" pieces with a layer of cotton or polyester batting the same size. One piece of fabric will be the outside of the tote and one will be the lining. The last piece of fabric will be used for the handle and belt. You will also need a fastener (snap or button) later in the project...

Line up the three pieces with the right sides out and wrong sides sandwiching the batting. Pin in place. Then, starting at the very edge, quilt the fabric leaving about 1.5" between each  row of stitches. You can use a straight stitch, but I find that a wavy stitch is more forgiving. 

Next, fold the piece lengthwise with the lining side up. Sew a straight seam down the long side and one of the short open sides.

Take your scissors and cut away the extra fabric and strings on the edge of the seam.

Now, take one of the closed corners and pull the sides apart to make a triangle. Pin this and repeat on the other side. Try to make your triangles equal.

Sew your seam, making the bottom of the triangle.

 Cut the excess triangle off right next to the seam you just made.

Now to make the handle... You will need two pieces of coordinating fabric that are 3" x 13" long. 

For the first piece, fold in half lengthwise (right sides together) and pin. Then, make a straight seam down the long side and turn right side out. Finish the ends by tucking the unfinished edge inside the ends of the strap.  Pin and iron flat.

Sew around the entire edge of the strap.

Fold the unfinished edge at the top down about 1.5 inches and then tuck the unfinished edge under. Sew a seam around the opening of the tote. Then, center the first end of the strap on the seam and pin in place.

Secure the strap using a square pattern with a diagonal line of stitches through the middle.  The square pattern will give the handle extra security. Get creative if you'd like...

Repeat for the other end of the strap, making sure that you sew the second end exactly half way across the opening of the tote.

You could stop here, of course, as I've seen many totes this way... but here' s a way to secure the wine bottle in the tote and add a bit of charm!

Use that second 3"x13" piece of fabric and create a strap much like you did for the handle. Instead of squaring up the ends, fold them at a diagnol. Pin in place to get an idea of how it lays. Then sew all around the edges like you did previously.

 Now, you can mark where your snap will go with a fabric pencil. You could also put a functional button here if you'd like!

Mark the underside too! Attach your favorite fastener. I used a little metal snap that I hand sewed with a little faux button on top.

The last part is to secure the belt to the tote with a straight stitch. I attached my belt 2" below the opening of the tote.

There you have it... BYOWB (wine bottle)!

Sew. Sweet.


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