Pattern making for the tote bags

Pattern making for the tote bags

Good morning friends!

In talking with Farmer Margy this week I found out that she really needs 50 tote bags to get things rolling (no Margy, I'm not scared by this!).  I've committed to send parcels in lots of 10 so that she doesn't have to wait for me to make all 50 and hopefully this will mean she can start sending out parcels to our Fierce Female Farmers.

I asked Margy what size she was after and she said around the size of a large cereal box.  So dutifully I pulled down our large box of Nutrigrain (don't judge me, I don't eat the crap!) and started measuring.  With my trusty serger packed away I seemingly didn't allow quiet enough for box corners and seams so I ended up with a very cute, but rather small, little tote bag (with added front pocket as we all know pockets and bags go together like vodka and diet coke - my favourite tipple!).

Here is my little useless tote:

For this pattern trial I used some fabric I had waiting to be turned into a table runner which I'd picked up in a Spotlight sale some time back (I'm linking to Spotlight, not because I will earn any money but hopefully to get noticed as I've also emailed them asking if they have any fabric they'd like to donate to this cause - sneaky right ;)).  I made cushion covers in a blue version which I think are very striking.  The contrasting plain red fabric I also used is a very thin cotton poplin (also from Spotlight) which I use as backing to some of my other products, and in fairness, it is far too thin and isn't suitable, so that is also a good reason why we make patterns and trial them in off cuts of fabrics until we work out just exactly what we want to make and how we're going to make it.

I had patterned the tote using 13" x 16" so I will increase this to be 17" x 20" and I think that will make a super good sized tote for the Farmer Packs and to be subsequently used for shopping etc.

Want to get involved?  Send me a message anyway you like, through Facebook, the little messenger thingy in the bottom right of your screen, via email to - I'm so available it's a bit embarrassing.

What do I need?

  1. People to spread the word (click SHARE on this blog post)
  2. Donations (for postage initially and ongoing) and fabric (as I'll soon burn through my stash)
  3. Fabric.  What fabric do I need?  Any of these (new or I can repurpose):
    • Decorator fabric - 100% cotton
    • Duck cotton
    • Canvas
    • Linen
    • Old sail cloths
    • Flour bags
    • Tea towels
    • Denim (yes I can make totes out of old jeans)

How do you donate cold hard (electronic) cash?  Here: 


Fancy sewing some totes yourself?  The more sewists the better, please get in touch!

These bags need sending to Inverell so you can sew from anywhere, ain't that cool!

Thanks for reading.  I'm so passionate about this cause and would love for you to get involved in anyway you can to help our farmers, for without them, quite frankly this country would crumble. 

Stay humble, stop the crumble, give thanks.

Sew-long for now,