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Exotic Feline Strip Quilted Tote

(Click to View All Images)


Materials
  • 14 2.5” x 42” strips of 5 coordinating 100% cotton fabrics or a jelly roll would make several totes. *
  • 11” x 14” solid lime green 100% cotton fabric for center square
  • 2/3 yard of 100% cotton fabric for lining
  • 1 pkg In-R-Form Plus® double sided fusible foam stabilizer
  • 22” x 14” rectangle of poly-mesh or no show stabilizer
  • Embroidery thread per the color charts
  • Matching or coordinating sewing machine thread
  • 7” square acrylic template
  • Wonder Clips® or craft clips

  • Designs used in this project
  • https://www.embroiderydesigns.com/productdetails/Pat-Williams/1/EXOK10.aspx
  • https://www.embroiderydesigns.com/productdetails/Pat-Williams/1/EXOK08.aspx
  • https://www.embroiderydesigns.com/productdetails/Pat-Williams/1/EXOK02.aspx
  • https://www.embroiderydesigns.com/productdetails/Pat-Williams/1/EXOK09.aspx
  • https://www.embroiderydesigns.com/productdetails/Pat-Williams/1/EXOK04.aspx
  • https://www.embroiderydesigns.com/productdetails/Pat-Williams/1/EXOK07.aspx
  • https://www.embroiderydesigns.com/productdetails/Pat-Williams/1/EXOK05.aspx
  • https://www.embroiderydesigns.com/productdetails/Pat-Williams/1/EXOK06.aspx
  • https://www.embroiderydesigns.com/productdetails/Pat-Williams/1/EXOK03.aspx
  • https://www.embroiderydesigns.com/productdetails/Pat-Williams/1/EXOK01.aspx
  • https://www.embroiderydesigns.com/productdetails/Pat-Williams/DesignPack/1/DPEXOK.aspx

  • Final Product: What You Will Create

    Preface:
    Inspired by Missouri Star Quilt Company’s youtube video on making an Improv Tote I thought this was a great opportunity to kick it up a notch by adding an embroidered panel. It is interesting to work with this great, needle friendly, fusible foam. If your quilt shop doesn’t have it on hand I bought mine on Amazon. The In-R-Form Plus® creates a bag that is soft, lightweight and squeezable, yet stands up on its own. *Some of the strips were cut from fat quarters, some from quarter yards of fabric and as you will place your strips in random arrangements it is difficult to calculate exactly how many you will need of each fabric, but it will take approximately the total of 14 strips to make the bag and the handles.


    Step 1:
    Hoop the 11” x 14” rectangle of lime green fabric with two layers of poly mesh stabilizer; two layers of stabilizer are used to maintain registration of the fill areas in the eyes of the cats.

    (Click Image to Enlarge)



    Step 2:
    Select an Exotic Feline face design for the center of your tote EXOK06. Glamorous Kitty, was used in this tote. Examine the color chart to select colors for the embellishments on the face to coordinate with your fabrics.

    (Click Image to Enlarge)



    Step 3:
    Use a 7” acrylic template to draw with a square, on point, around the design. Note: The Exotic Kitty faces are various sizes you may adjust the size of the square cut larger or smaller to fit whichever size face that you choose.

    (Click Image to Enlarge)



    Step 4:
    Cut along the lines just drawn to complete the center panel.

    (Click Image to Enlarge)



    Step 5:
    (Click Image to Enlarge)
    Cut a 15”x 30” rectangle from the In –R-Form Plus® and two 30” x 1 ½” strips for the handles.


    Step 6:
    Decide where you want the center panel to be on the front of the tote. In the sample the center of the design is place 5” below the top edge of the foam and centered from side to side. Being careful not to let your iron touch the foam press the center square to the foam. Note: Do not worry about the fusible on the other side of the foam, it will not fuse to your ironing board while you are pressing the center panel to the front.

    (Click Image to Enlarge)



    Step 7:
    The remainder of the bag is made at your sewing machine. Lay a strip of fabric face down across any edge of the center panel and stitch down with a ¼” seam allowance.

    (Click Image to Enlarge)



    Step 8:
    Open the strip and iron to fuse it to the foam.

    (Click Image to Enlarge)



    Step 9:
    Lay a second strip of fabric face down over the center panel and first strip and stitch it down with a ¼” seam; you cut your strips to length as you go; flip and fuse the second strip to the foam.

    (Click Image to Enlarge)

     


    Step 10:
    Continue adding strips in this manner all around the center panel.

    (Click Image to Enlarge)



    Step 11:
    Interesting patterns can develop by adding two strips to one side before you add a covering strip from the other side. This is where you get to be creative and place the strips as you desire.

    (Click Image to Enlarge)



    Step 12:
    (Click Image to Enlarge)
    Continue adding and pressing strips until the In-R-Form Plus® is completely covered.


    Step 13:
    Lay the tote face down on a cutting mat and trim to the size of the foam.

    (Click Image to Enlarge)



    Step 14:
    (Click Image to Enlarge)
    Your tote will now look like this.


    Step 15:
    Fold the tote in half matching the top edges. Craft clips are handier than pins to hold the side edges together; stitch the side edges with a ½” seam.

    (Click Image to Enlarge)



    Step 16:
    To box the bottom of the bag; open the bottom of the side seam and press against the bottom of the bag; measure up 2.5” from the point and draw a line across the point.

    (Click Image to Enlarge)



    Step 17:
    Stitch across the line drawn; you can clip the dog ear formed or leave it to be folded inside the bag. If I were to clip it I would sew another seam 1.4” from the first toward the point before trimming to give the bottom extra strength. Repeat on the other side of the bag.

    (Click Image to Enlarge)



    Step 18:
    (Click Image to Enlarge)
    Turn the bag right side out; it will now look like this.


    Step 19:
    Cut a panel of lining fabric 15” x 30”, fold in half lengthwise; Stich one side with a ½” seam from top to bottom; on the second side stitch leaving a 5” opening in the middle of the side for turning the bag; be sure to back stitch on both sides of the opening.

    (Click Image to Enlarge)

     


    Step 20:
    Box the corners on the lining the same as you did on the outer bag.

    (Click Image to Enlarge)



    Step 21:
    (Click Image to Enlarge)
    Slip the outer bag inside the lining right sides together.


    Step 22:
    To make the handles – cut 4 strips of fabric to 30” in length.

    (Click Image to Enlarge)



    Step 23:
    Fuse the foam strip down the center of two of the handle strips.

    (Click Image to Enlarge)



    Step 24:
    Lay a second handle strip under the strip with the fused foam right sides together; stitch next to the foam down one side of the two strips; repeat for the second handle.

    (Click Image to Enlarge)



    Step 25:
    Fold and fuse the outside seam allowance on the handles to the foam using just the tip of your iron.

    (Click Image to Enlarge)



    Step 26:
    Fold the remaining strip over the handle turning in the seam allowance and fuse for both handles.

    (Click Image to Enlarge)



    Step 27:
    Top stitch down both edges of both handles being sure to catch the folded over seam allowances.

    (Click Image to Enlarge)



    Step 28:
    Mark the lining 4” from the both seams on both sides of the tote.

    (Click Image to Enlarge)



    Step 29:
    Fold the handles in half; making sure they are not twisted; insert the handles between the tote and the lining, centering the middle of each side of the strap over the 4” marks you just made; have the ends of the straps exceed the top of the tote by ½”; use wonder clips on each side of each strap in place.

    (Click Image to Enlarge)

     


    Step 30:
    Stitch the lining, handles and tote bag together with a ½” seam allowance all around; do not trim the seam allowance or the ½” of the handles exceeding the top of the bag.

    (Click Image to Enlarge)



    Step 31:
    Turn the bag through the opening; then before tucking the lining into the bag pin together the opening in the lining and stich close to the edge to close it. Insert the lining into the bag.

    (Click Image to Enlarge)



    Step 32:
    The tote will now look like this.

    (Click Image to Enlarge)



    Step 33:
    You are now going to get the benefit of the fusible on the foam on the inside of the bag; fold the lining so that the edges are even with the outside of the bag, iron just 3” to 4” towards the bottom of the bag to help the lining stay in the proper place; also place wonder clips around the top edge to assist the lining to stay in place.

    (Click Image to Enlarge)



    Step 34:
    Top stitch 3/8” around the top of the tote bag.

    (Click Image to Enlarge)



    Step 35:
    (Click Image to Enlarge)
    The back of your bag will look something like this.


    Step 36:
    (Click Image to Enlarge)
    Congratulations your Exotic Feline tote is complete!

    For the love of embroidery…
    Pat Williams


    Share this project:     
    Meet The Author: Pat Williams
    Award winning Digitizer, Embroidery Educator, Author and a Consultant to the Industry, Pat Williams has 20 years of experience in the embroidery industry. Pat has won multiple awards for her digitizing expertise including the 2007 Impressions Awards Grand Championship, Best of Show as well as the 1st and 2nd Place Awards.. Pat’s love of digitizing has afforded her the opportunity to write many articles for Impressions magazine in the United States and Images Magazine in Europe. She also has authored her own digitizing training CD series, “Digitizing Steps to Success.” In 2001 Pat was named “Embroidery Educator of the Year.” For many years Pat lead digitizing seminars at the ISS Shows in Long Beach, CA and for Compucon software. Pat retired from the commercial embroidery arena in 2010. She now resides in Sierra Vista, AZ. She can be reached at pwilliams22@cox.net.

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    Anonymous Mar 26, 2016
    Thanks for the nice & easy instructions. I have this kitty design & will make this fun tote.
    Reply

    Sharon P Apr 12, 2016
    Used the Exotic Tiger design and made the strips in patterned black/white and orange. It is turning into a gorgeous bag for my middle granddaughter. I cut my strip size down to 2". This is such a wonderful design and pattern!!! Making the Glamorous Kitty bag for my youngest granddaughter. Thanks for your creativity and great designs!!
    Reply
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