Tag Archives: debbie mumm fabric

Reversible Canvas Tote Bag

Canvas Tote with hidden pocket

Today instead of finishing something that I started and put to the side or cut a new purse pattern, I wanted to make a reversible tote bag.

I put a pocket that I refer to as a hidden pocket on the outside so that you can easily put a cell phone or car keys in it and you don’t have to stumble through the inside looking for them. Basically the pocket sits between the tote bag and lining. When I do the next one I’ll try and take pictures as I work it. 

I put two big buttons from Debbie Mumm’s colletion on the outside. I used one of Debbie Mumm’s fabric for this bag. I really did like her fabric and stock up last week-end when I was finishing my embroidered tote bag.

Reversible side with 3 pockets

Reversible side with 3 pockets

Here is the reversible side. I put three pockets on the inside and they are big, 4 x 5. My previous bag had pockets that extended all the way across the width of the bag. I added tab snaps on the pockets, so that if the bag is used like this, items will stay in place. It wasn’t too bad figuring out where to place everything. This is a nice pattern for a tote bag.

I took pictures of the three pockets before I did the seams and put the lining in. This gives you a closer look at how they look and the stitching.

My husband was in the sewing room at the time I took this and thought it was weird that I was taking a picture of the pockets. He doesn’t know that I have a blog. He always says “Whats a BLOG!” Back to the bag. When I usually use a pattern I try and match up the pockets to the lining, but I got hollered at by a sewing buddy saying that it makes the item look more store bought. I don’t think so, I think it shows that I can get it exact and looks more provisional.

On the left is a close up of the center pocket of the three. You can see the snap tab as well as the stitching. On most of my pockets I use iron on stabilizer to keep their shape. On the hidden pocket, I didn’t use any.

To the right is a close up of the hidden pocket. I took this shot before I finished the lining and sewed on the buttons.

Well thats it for today. I don’t have to make dinner cause we were suppose to go away (tomorrow) so I guess I’ll grab the cat cause she is looking more like a long haired rat instead of a cat.

Hope to hear from you and your projects.


Finished Lined Embroidered Tote Bag


Close up of lining

Close up of lining

Here is the pictures of my American Tote bags that I lined over the week-end. The designs are from EmbLibrary and I’ve added a side bar of some of my favorite places to purchase designs. I will post more later.


These canvas totes were embroidered on my Brother PR600 that I love. I used my fast frames on the totes instead of hooping them. I did not use any type of stabilizer because I figured that the canvas was heavy enough. I used double stick scotch tape to hold the canvas tote to the fast frame. These designs took up to 2 hours to embroider on the PR600. 

These totes were flat when started and I took 4 1/2″ to box the bottom to give the tote a 5″ depth. To make the lining I basically measured the width and height of the tote bag. I added an inch for seam allowance.

Turned 1/2″ on each end of the fabric to finish off the edges. The finished edges would be sewn to the top of the tote bag. Took some remaining fabric to make pockets that run from seam to seam. There are 4 pockets that measure 5 x 4.

On the fabric for the pocket I turned 1/4 on the top and bottom. I then took iron on stabilizer and ironed it to the piece of fabric. Then sewed a top stitch where the stabilizer and fabric met so that if at any time the stabilizer wears, it is still holding by thread. Placed the pocket to the fabric and then sewed the pocket on. Then measured where to stitch each section for each pocket and stitched.

Ready to sew the seams. Seams finished now to box the bottom of the lining. Measured 4 1/2″, stitch, done. Now to pin the lining to the tote. Zip and its done.

The fabric that I used for the lining is a Debbie Mumm design that I really liked and thought it would go good with the totes.

These totes really looking stunning and I plan to make some totes that don’t have embroidery, instead they will be reversible. I have some interesting ideas for pockets on these totes. Hopefully in a couple of weeks I will have one done.

This weekend, I might be going away for R&R after I go to the hospital for a small procedure. Took a 4 day get away. Maybe Friday afternoon I will be attending my sister and her son’s art exhibit in Chicago. Depends how I feel after the hospital. Also don’t want to deal with Chicago rush hour traffic.

Lining of tote

Lining of tote