I’m embarrassed to admit I’ve been carrying a cheap, ratty nylon tote bag as a carryon when I travel for far too long. I think I got it at Target, I’ve had it for years and it was literally falling apart. It was dirty, the outside pockets had holes in them and the zipper was coming out, but it was the perfect size and shape. It’s been hanging in my sewing room for weeks so I could figure out how to salvage it.
Last weekend, I finally took the seam ripper to it and tore it apart. I used the original bag pieces as a template and salvaged the handles, webbing, zipper and hardware.
A yard of quilting fabric, a yard of lining, some iron on flexible foam interfacing, a little bit of piping, and here’s the bag, reborn into something a bit more presentable:
My son is calling it the Franken-tote because I put it together from pieces/parts from the old one. Works for me!
This is a basic box bottom tote, but the added pockets on the sides made it a little challenging to assemble. The pockets go over the side seams and under the webbing, which meant the first side was easy peasy…and the second side required maneuvering a stiff, bulky tube under my sewing machine foot. There was some swearing and seam ripping involved, but I LOVE how it turned out. It’s a very sturdy, well-padded bag. I noted all the measurements and definitely want to make this again. With slightly more flexible interfacing, it wouldn’t be hard at all.
In the meantime, I have a trip coming up in mid-June and can’t wait to use this.