"Life is not measured by the number of breaths you take but by the moments that take your breath away?"

Author: Unknown

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Sew Easy Method for Lining a Tote....Perfectly

        Ever make a beautiful tote bag to have it ruined by a lining that was not a perfect fit? You try to tops stitch the opening, just to have one side or the other bunch up because they dont match. You try and try, but your seam allowances just arent perfectly the same on both the tote and the lining.
        Sounds like I have some first hand experience huh. Who me? Never..........well, more times than I care to admit.
        Today, while trying to put together a quick tote for my granddaughter, I decided to try a shortcut. I have never done this before, nor seen it anywhere else, but believe me....I will be doing it again.  I didnt take pics along the way, simply cause I figured I would be ripping it out. But I did create a quickie tutorial using paint. If you have any questions, dont hesitate to leave a comment below.
When you decide on your bag dimensions, then add a little extra for thickness of your depth of bag. For example if you want to hold a book that is 1" thick, then we need to make sure the bag will have a 1" bottom, and still be the dimensions you wanted. So if you wanted your bag 10" wide, then add 1/2" to each sides width (A)
To figure the height of bag (1/2 of B), if you make the bottom 1" deep, then add this amount to B.
You can click on these pics to enlarge   
1. As indicated above, lay fabrics together with right sides facing together. stitch along edge A, leaving approximately 3" space for turning as indicated by red arrow. On the right edge, stitch clear down.
2. Now roll tube around, so seam lines are lined up against each other down the middle. Its best to have one seam facing one way and the other going in the opposite direction to kinda lock the seam lines together perfectly. Wrong sides are still facing out.

Now stitch the long edges as indicated by dotted lines.

3. Turn right sides out thru opening, and then slip lining INTO tote. Push corners down firmly into each other, turn back so lining is on the outside. Flatten corner so seam line goes down the middle
With corner flattened out so seam line runs right down the MIDDLE as indicated by black dotted line, figure out how thick you want your bag to be, depth of bag.

If you decide on thickness of bottom being 1", then lay ruler across red line, and slide down until red line measures 1". The distance down A and B should be equal. draw a line and stitch on this line (red line), These flaps will just fold over on the inside. Now turn back so outside of tote is back on the outside and lining on the inside. 

Add straps, and closures as desired.
TIP: you could sew the handles inside, between the layers when you do step 1.


  1. Good to see such nice tote bags with beautiful customization. Tote bags are a symbol of stylish gesture and smart personality. Popularity of tote bag is increasing day by day. As it is a nice product, some customization can take the style/smartness to a new level. Wanna know more.

    Custom Tote Bags

  2. I have acumilated a lot of totes that were from garage sales. Nice sturdy canvas type. I often add a pocket over the advertising ones in complimentary color or print and am inspired to try lining them now!

    1. I stumbled upon this method by accident and it works very well. Have fun, and thanks for stopping by.