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Topic: folding totebag that folds into it's own pouch!  (Read 9672 times)
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« on: May 18, 2007 02:42:12 PM »

I just made this coolest thing last night. It's a lightweight nylon totebag that folds up and stuff into it's own little attached pouch. So  if you need a temporary large bag but don't want to be stuck carrying it all day, you can fold it up and stash it in your smaller purse.

My inspiration for making it was, whenever I go to the post office to mail packages, I carry them in a plastic grocery bag. I make beautiful purses and bags, and here I am carrying an ugly grocery bag!  Tongue But the thing I liked about that was that after I mailed the stuff I could just roll up the plastic bag and stick it in my purse. It was small and lightweight. So I decided to make something like that out of a  thin but strong lightweight fabric that would have the same convenience. I used ripstop nylon and just made a basic square tote bag, really easy.
But then I thought, wouldn't it be cool to have a little pouch to keep it in that was attached so I wouldn't lose it? Tote bags and zippered pouches are both super easy and common, but attaching them together makes it the coolest thing!

so here is the amazing transformation
first you see a cute little zipper pouch

then you unzip it and see what's inside

you start to unfold the tote bag

keep unfolding...

all the way unfolded

with straps unfolded

then tuck in the pouch to the inside of the tote bag

turn the pouch inside out and you can use it as a pocket

I am so excited about this thing. I'm going to be travelling next month and I think this will come in so handy. Grin No more plastic grocery bags for me!
« Last Edit: May 22, 2007 02:15:53 PM by sweets4ever » THIS ROCKS   Logged

« Reply #1 on: May 18, 2007 02:43:50 PM »

Thats is ...wooww.... awesome really !!!
I want it Cheesy
« Reply #2 on: May 18, 2007 02:51:17 PM »

It's a little puckered where I sewed on the appliques but otherwise I'm so  pleased with it. I'm such a dork, I keep unfolding it and then folding it back up into the pouch.
I gotta get some more ripstop nylon!

« Reply #3 on: May 18, 2007 03:01:38 PM »

These bags are brilliant, my Dad always used to carry one in his back pocket as he HATED plastic bags.  I wish I was clever enough to make one then I'd be more likely to not forget a tote when I go shopping.


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« Reply #4 on: May 18, 2007 03:33:24 PM »

GENIUS!  Grin  You should sell these in your shop!
« Reply #5 on: May 18, 2007 03:36:17 PM »

GENIUS!  Grin  You should sell these in your shop!
that's why I need to get more ripstop nylon! Wink
this one is all MINE though!

« Reply #6 on: May 18, 2007 04:26:33 PM »

Love it!  Grin Would you consider a tutorial?
« Reply #7 on: May 18, 2007 07:37:16 PM »

Sure. It's super easy though, almost too simple to need a full tutorial. There are tote bag tutes and zipper pouch tutes already on the tute index and  mine are nothing special. The tote bag is just like a pillowcase with straps. (although I did do french seams because it is unlined and the ripstop nylon likes to fray, so I wanted no raw edges showing)
1. Make the tote bag FIRST.
2. When the tote bag is done, fold it up as compact as it will go.
3. Lay the little folded bundle on a piece of paper, and trace a rectangle around it.
Add seam allowances, and that is your pouch template.
4. Then make your pouch.
here's a good tute for pouches
You do it in this order to make sure the tote bag will fit inside the pouch.

 The only  "new"  step is that after you make the tote bag and the pouch, you attach them with a single line of stitching.
1. Turn the tote bag inside out.
2. turn the pouch inside out.
3. pin one side of the pouch to the top edge of the tote bag,  in the center of the "back" side of the tote bag between the handles. (my tote bag has a back and front because of the appliques) Remember: You're pinning WRONG sides together because both of them are inside out.
4. The pouch top edge, where the zipper is, should be just below the hemmed top edge of the tote bag.
5. sew a line near the top edge of the pouch close to the zipper, sewing it to the top edge of the tote bag.
you only want to sew one side of the pouch to one side of the  tote bag. Don't sew through both layers of the pouch or you will sew it shut.

anyway, that is all there is to it! The main thing is just to sew the wrong sides together so that the tote bag will fold up INSIDE the pouch and not outside it.

The other tip is to make your straps out of ripstop nylon too, (or whatever your lightweight fabric is). Sew it into an inch wide tube, turn it right side out and topstitch it. I usually like to use premade nylon belt webbing for straps but it is  bulky and rigid, it won't fold up compactly so it doesn't work for this project. All the fabrics you use for the bag and the pouch should be thin and light, but strong. That is what keeps the whole thing so handy and pocket sized! A lightweight nylon raincoat from the thrift store is a good choice, then you even have the straps pre-made if it comes with a belt!

« Reply #8 on: May 18, 2007 08:08:10 PM »

very cool, but I wonder how much weight it would hold, probably as much as those plastic bags don't ya think.
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« Reply #9 on: May 18, 2007 08:27:43 PM »

I'm such a dork, I keep unfolding it and then folding it back up into the pouch.
That's funny!  Grin Grin
It's kind of like when I (finally!) clean out my fridge, and then walk by and open the door and "look" at it...about 15 times!  Now, that's dorky!!   Roll Eyes
But, anyway...back to your extremely clever bag...what a great idea, and the attached pouch/pocket thingy is sheer genious!!

I miss my doggy~Apollo~He'll forever be in my heart

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