Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Mimi G For Michael Levine: FREE DIY Carpet Tote Tutorial!

  • 1 Yard Medium to Heavyweight Upholstery Fabric Like THIS, THIS, THIS or THIS
  • 1 Yard Lining 
  • 1/2 Yard Stiff Interfacing or SHAPERS (Shapers are the best thing ever, they can be use for so many things so it is always god to have a yard in your stash.
  • Old Belt or pre made Purse Handles found HERE (the thrift store is a great place to find belts that can be re purposed)
  • Thread/Pins/Chalk
  • Ruler /Scissors
  • Sewing Leather Needles & Universal Needle
Pattern Pieces:

Step 1. Cut 2 Pieces of Main Fabric 22" x 18 and cut out  3x3" corners as shown below

Step 2. Cut 2 Pieces exactly as you did for the main fabric

Step 3. Cut 2 Lining Facings 22x4" as shown below

Step 4. Iron under 1/2" on one long edge of the lining facing pieces and place right side up on top of lining (the non pressed edge will be on the top) This gives the top of the lining structure and gives the inside of the bag a nice finish.

Step 5. Pin it in place.

Step 6. Sew down the facing to the lining at the bottom and top of the lining pieces, do this for both lining pieces.

Step 7. Place lining pieces right sides together and sew across the bottom as shown below using a 1/2 seam allowance and leaving a 4.5" opening at the bottom of the lining.

Step 8. Sew the sides of the bag linings tog there using a 1/2" seam allowance. The sewn lining pieces should look like the image below. 

NOTE: You will construct the main fabric pieces for the bag in the same manner as the lining EXCEPT you will NOT leave an opening at the bottom of the main fabric pieces.

Step 9. Press open the sides seams of the lining pieces as shown below.

Step 10. Now we close out the cut out corners by bring both seams together as shown below, pin it and we will sew it closed using a 1/2" seam allowance.

Step 11. Sew the corners, set aside and sew the main fabric pieces together.

Step 12. When you are done sewing both the main fabric and lining set aside and turn the main fabric inside out.

Step 13. Cut out 2 pieces of Interfacing or shaper measuring 15x6" then sew or glue both layers together for extra stiffness.

Step 14. Cut a piece of fabric larger then the shaper as shown so you can cover it. With the right side of the fabric facing you place the shaper on top and fold up 2" of fabric. Then fold the other side on top. Pinch one end of the fabric and pull out the shaper. Pin the edges together and sew the short sides.

Step 15. Once you have sewn the sides turn the pocket right side out and insert the shaper.

Step 16. Cut your belt so you have two handles. The length of your handles is up to you.

Step 17. Now grab the main fabric bag and measure in from each side 7" and make a mark. Then place the one handle and mark the width (as shown below) do this on both sides.

Step 18. Place the lining over the bag so that right sides are facing.

Step 19. Pin both layers together at the top. I like to pin were I made my handle markings so that as I am sewing around I know where to start and stop. We will NOT be sewing the opening for each handle.

Step 20. Sew all the way around except for the opening for the handles.

Step 21. Pull the bag out through the hole in the bottom of the lining to turn the bag right sides out.

Step 22. When you have your bag turned right side out press the top of the bag.

 Step 22. Mark the belt handle 5/8" from the edge so you know how far to insert the handle into your bag so that they are both even. Sew across the top of the bag going REALLY SLOW over the leather. Make sure you are using your leather needles. I was able to sew through the thickness on my hoe sewing machine without a problem. Do this for all 4 openings.

Step 23.  hand stitch the opening in the bottom of the lining, lace the shaper inside and you are all done!


  1. Replies
    1. you are welcome Michelle! keep checking in! There is new video tutorial on our You Tube channel!

  2. I love this!!!!! OMG, I pray that I can find some things to make these. It will keep me from sleeping on the streets.
    Thank you so much!

  3. This is an awesome bag. Is there a certain needle that you use because you used upholstered fabric and a belt? I know that there is a needle for jeans and suede fabric. Would you use the needle for that?

  4. Hi,
    I would suggest a heavy weight needle or a leather needle.
    Check out a few options here…