Sunday, October 27, 2013

Pattern Review: Zip-Top Tote Bag from Warehouse Fabrics Blog

This free zip top tote pattern is from the Warehouse Fabrics blog.

I used a quilter's cotton for the outside, a metallic thin fabric for the lining, and old sheet for the inside of the zippered interior pocket, and buckram for the interfacing.

I didn't do the cargo pocket she recommended for the outside, and did a patch pocket with a seam in the middle and a flap over it with two snaps instead.

On the inside, I did an interior zipper pocket on one side and a patch pocket with a seam for a pen pocket on the other side.

I like the bag overall.  It is a nice size and weight, and I like how I did the pockets.  The strap is a little long for me- it could be a full 6" shorter and still be ok.

The directions were decent and the pattern pieces fit together.  I struggled with getting the buckram through the turning hole because it is so stiff, and how to use the interfacing was unclear in the directions.

I also attached the lining to the zipper differently than she explained. I did this because I made the error of topstitching the zipper down when I attached it to the exterior pieces.  Then my zipper tape wasn't available when she told me to attach it to the lining.  Oops.  Instead I tucked my buckram in under the lining, flipped my lining over the edge, and did a second topstitching layer enclosing these pieces.  It worked fine.

I also missed the part in the directions to leave a hole for turning and had to rip myself one. I don't like how bags look with a turning hole in the lining; I much prefer to close them with the topstitching at the top opening.

When attaching the sides before turning it, the zipper sides didn't quite line up. I think the top edges where the zipper lines up look a bit sloppy and would look nicer had I made a continuous seam up the side rather than skipping the zipper itself when I was doing this long seam (this will make sense when you actually do it).

All in all, it's a nice pattern. There are a few jumps to other instruction sets, which is annoying, but it make a fine bag.  Next time, I will do shorter straps and hide the ends of the zipper into the side seams better.
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