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No one knows they want a wine tote until they see it. For older people who may have more money, they work as a fabulous gift bag/hostess gift. For others, like myself, it’s just something fun to carry around. I have a faux bois one that’s unsellable (from my “product development” phase) that I take with me to the liquor store so they don’t brown-bag the bottle. Don’t ask me how I know this (wink, wink), but it fits vodka, rum, and certain whiskey bottles as well — like Stranahan’s Colorado Whiskey.
Now that the weather is getting nicer, my boyfriend and I take our lawn chairs to one of the many public parks in Denver with books and my pug, Butters. We take along the wine tote because after you’ve used one once, the idea of putting a wine bottle in a bag with other stuff feels precarious.
Of course, not everyone boozes it up so frequently that they’d need one of these — or maybe they’re like my stepmom (she’s a Stoli gal), and don’t go on picnics. In her case, it’s because she has fair skin and burns easily. You should’ve seen her on a family trip to Hawaii 7 years ago. Homegirl went outside once and didn’t come home with so much as a watch tan line.
She uses her for plastic bags. Sure, we’re in the midst of a grocery bag revolution, but all I’ve really done is manage to collect a bunch of reusable farmers market bags to hold all of my plastic bags. Sometimes, I fill those farmers market bags with goodies for potlucks, then leave it there thinking the host will use it. Unfortunately, they won’t use it and now they’re part of the vicious cycle of piling plastic bags into a drawer and leaving the farmers market bag at someone else’s house. Let’s eliminate half of that scenario and stuff plastic bags into your new homemade wine tote/plastic bag holder!
1 fat quarter of your choice patterned fabric (I use 100% cotton because it’s easiest to work with)
1 fat quarter of muslin
1 fat quarter of batting (I use organic cotton because I’m a hippie, plus it’s easier to manage than polyester batting. Fleece works great, too!)
1 fat quarter of fusable, medium weight interfacing.
4 pieces of patterned fabric measured 13”x3.5”
1 piece of patterned fabric measured 3.5”x3.5”
4 pieces of interfacing measured 12”x3”
1 piece measured 3”x3”.
1 piece of patterned fabric measuring 4”x13”
2 strips of interfacing measuring 1.5”x12”
Iron the interfacing onto the wrong side of the patterned fabric. Remember! Bumpy side of the interfacing goes down:
Iron the it so it leave about ½” of fabric on one end. That will be the top of the wine tote.
For the strap, iron the interfacing on like so:
The interfacing strips are spaced ½” from each end and ¼” from each other.
Sew the 13” sides of the patterned pieces together with a ¼” seam
Pin the 3.5” square to the bottom of the four pieces.
Sew the edges of the square to the bottom of the four pieces, leaving a ¼” seam.
When you’re finished it should look like this:
Turn it inside out, press it with an iron, and put it to the side for now. Here’s what it should look like:
Sewing the strap:
Fold the 4”x13” piece over, so the right sides are facing each other. Sew ¼” seam on both sides. Be sure to leave the ends open.
Turn it inside out. If you’ve never done this before, I recommend pinching a piece of the fabric, and using a pen to push it through:
Press it and get it as flat and straight as possible:
Topstitch the strap. You can use whatever spacing you’d like. I like to do seams at ⅛” and ¼” on each side:
It should end up looking like this:
Set it aside for now.
Time to work on the lining:
Cut 4 pieces of Muslin measuring 12”x3.5”
Cut one piece of muslin measured 3.5”x3.5”
Cut coordinating pieces of batting
Sew the pieces together like you did with the patterned pieces, again leaving ¼” seam.
Don’t turn this one inside out, you should have two separate pieces that look like this:
Place the muslin/batting piece inside of the patterned piece. I use a wine bottle and give it a little shake to make it nice and snug.
Fold the top over twice, creating a ½” band over the lining. Press it with an iron. Sew a ⅛” seam from the bottom of the band.
Place the strap underneath the band. I put mine in the center of opposite sides of the tote.
Fold the strap over the band:
Once you make it all the way around and attach both ends of the strap, Topstitch a ⅛” seam from the top to secure everything and give it a finished look:
You’re finished and ready to picnic!
To learn more about Tavie and He**-Yeah-I-Sew, or to purchase a wine tote, be sure to visit the He**-Yeah-I-Sew Etsy shop.