a secret sewing reveal

Today I can reveal a secret sewing project which kept me busy and happy for a few hours . . . making something for a friend’s birthday.  The friend in question is Avis.

Not sure if she’ll actually use this, but if she doesn’t, I’m sure she had a chuckle anyway.


I made Avis a tote bag, with a matching pouch for tote bag to be folded into, so it can be clipped to a jean’s loop.  I don’t know about you, but when I just nip to the shops for one or two bits, I always end up buying more than intended . . . and I don’t like to have to pay for a plastic carrier bag.

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The tote bag measures approximately 16” x 16” so it’s a nice shopping bag size.  The pouch, for when it’s folded measures approx 3.5” x 7”.

I bought this fabric especially.  It’s a batik cotton but has a waterproof coating so will be brilliant for shopping on a rainy day.  Mind you, I got a bit confused about which side was the right side . . . unsure if the coated side was meant to be on the outside or the inside.  I ended up opting for the waterproof side on the outside.

And just to prove that the large tote bag can fit inside the pouch . . . there’s a folding method to stick to.

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First, bag needs to be flat (and dry)

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And you simply start by folding up the bottom

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Until it’s a nice flat roll like this.

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Fold one side in (about 1/3 in)

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The second side in.

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And then continue rolling the straps round.

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And voilà!  One good sized tote bag, all neatly folded into its pouch!

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Anyway, I sent that to Avis, along with some fun plant pot decorations with little wooden hedgehogs on the ends and a copy of “The Sewing Machine” by Nathalie Fergie.  If you haven’t read that, I’ll be doing a quick book review post in the coming days.


15 thoughts on “a secret sewing reveal

  1. Avis is a lucky girl – you’ve sent some very thoughtful gifts.
    I’m not going to read your book review until I’ve read the copy you so kindly sent to me – I don’t want any spoilers!

  2. What a lovely parcel full of surprises! Thank you so much Claire. I’m feeling very spoiled!! Yes, I’ll definitely use the bag which is the perfect size and made from such gorgeous fabric. I’m also looking forward to reading the book which I’ll start tonight. As for the hedgehogs, who doesn’t love those?

    • from what Avis tells me, when she goes out, all she takes is keys, phone & Visa card lol. She doesn’t possess a handbag and isn’t a “bag lady” at all, but I think this beauty will still come in useful.

      • I don’t think I could be that minimal! Sunglasses, sunscreen, notebook and pencil… well, you get the idea. Anyway, you’ve given her a clip for attaching it to her jeans or belt or whatever, so she can still go ‘hands free’!

  3. Lovely present and idea – need to make one for myself as I hate to buy bags and always forget to take a reusable with me. That way I could just clip it on to my bag and always have it ready to use <3. I love your fabric choice – so beautiful!

    • thank you ^^ You can actually buy this kind of bag for very little (compared to what it cost me to make it) but I just wanted to gift a home-made pressie and one that would be useful.

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