Drawstring Tote Bag with Handle (Free Pattern)

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Whether you're a busy executive working in the city, a dancer on the way to class or someone who just likes to swap shoes during the day, this tote is the perfect way to transport your gear.
Here's what you need:
- Medium-heavy weight washable cotton fabric for bag: Approximately 45 1/4 in x 19 3/4 in (115 cm x 50 cm)
- Light-medium weight fabric for lining and drawstring top: 45 1/4 in x 1 yd (115 cm x 90 cm)
- 1 inch (2.5 cm) Webbing for straps: 49 1/4 in long (125 cm)
- Drawstring cord or ribbon: 31 1/2 in (80 cm)
- Cord stopper (suited to the thickness of the ribbon)
Finished size:
- 13 3/4 in x 15 3/4 in (35 cm x 40 cm)

Step 1

- 2 bag pieces: 14 1/2 in x 16 1/2 in (37 cm x 42 cm)
- 2 lining pieces: 14 1/2 in x 16 1/2 in (37 cm x 42 cm)
- 2 drawstring top pieces: 14 1/2 in x 8 3/8 in (37 cm x 42 cm)
- 2 webbing straps: 24 1/2 in (62 cm)

Step 2

Sew Bag:
- Pin the bag pieces together with the right sides facing. Stitch along both sides and across the bottom.
- Turn the bag right side out and press flat.

Step 3

Sew Lining:
- Pin the lining pieces together with right sides facing. Stitch 5/8 in (1.5 cm) from the edge along both sides and across the bottom, leaving a 6 in (15 cm) opening on one side for turning the bag right side out later on.

Step 4

Sew Drawstring top:
- On both drawstring top pieces, zigzag stitch or overlock the shorter raw edges.
- Pin these two pieces together with right sides facing and mark the fabric 2 1/2 in (6.5 cm) from the top edge on each side.
- Starting from this mark, stitch down each side. Press the seams open.
- To create the casing for the cord, fold over the top edge 3/8 in (1 cm) to the wrong side of the fabric and press. Fold over another 1 in (2.5 cm) and press again. Stitch the casing down, sewing 1/4 in (5 mm) in from the folded edge.

Step 5

To assemble:
On both sides of the bag, pin the webbing straps 2 3/8 in (6 cm) from the top and 3 in (8 cm) in from each side. Turn the ends of the webbing under 3/8 in (1 cm) to prevent fraying. Stitch along the edges of the webbing and close to the top of the bag to secure the straps in place.

Step 6

With the straps folded down towards the bottom of the bag, position the drawstring top pieces over the top of the bag with right sides facing. Match up the raw edges - the casing should be facing towards the bottom of the bag. Pin in place.

Step 7

With the bag right side out and the lining still wrong side out, insert the bag into the lining.

Step 8

Pin all three edges together at the top of the bag and sew all the way around the top edge.

Step 9

Pull the bag through the opening in the lining, then stitch the hole closed and push the lining down into the bag.

Step 10

Press the top edge flat, then topstitch all the way around through all layers, 1/4 in (5 mm) from the edge.

Step 11

Thread the cord or ribbon through the casing, using a safety pin attached to one end to help you pull it through.

Step 12

Feed the cord through the cord stopper and tie knots in the end of the cord.

Step 13

This tutorial is excerpted with permission from "Totes Amaze: 25 Bags to Make for Every Occasion" by Amanda McKittrick and published by Hardie Grant Books.

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