Quilting Tote Free Pattern – Outside Pocket

Last week, I made a quilting tote free pattern with nifty little pockets on the inside to store things. It was such a quick and easy project that I decided to make another one for my ever growing thread collection. However, this time, I decided to switch things up. This alternate quilting tote free pattern uses webbing for sturdier handles, and I’ve sewn the pockets on the outside which makes the sewing instructions a bit different. Let’s dive in!

Quilting Tote Free Pattern
Quilting Tote Free Pattern


Quilting Tote Free Pattern

  • outer (quilted) fabric – ½ yard
    • 2 – 12″ x 6½”pieces (side)
    • 1 – 23″ x 8″ pieces (bottom)
    • 2  – 12″ x 4½” pieces (pocket)
  • lining (black) fabric – ½ yard
    • 2 – 12″ x 6½” pieces (side)
    • 1  – 23″ x 8″ pieces (bottom)
    • 2  – 12″ x 4½” pieces (pocket)
  • binding – ¼ yard
    • 3 – 2½” width of fabric strips you need iron in half lengthwise
  • batting
    • 1  – 23″ x 8″ pieces (bottom)
    • 2 – 12″ x 6½” pieces (side)
  • 1″ Polyester Webbing
    • 2 – 24″ pieces
  • interfacing (optional, but it will make the pocket stiffer) – ⅛ yard
    • 2  – 12″x 4½” pieces (pocket)


Step 1

First, layer a side lining piece, side batting piece, and side outer piece with the wrong-sides of the fabric towards the batting. Then sew around the outside edge with a ¼” seam. Repeat this step for the second side piece. If you would like to quilt your tote’s sides, do that now. Then set the side pieces aside.

Quilting Tote Free Pattern Sides
Quilting Tote Free Pattern Sides

Step 2

Next, iron the fusible interfacing to the wrong side of both of the outer pocket pieces. Then, wrong sides together, align the outer pocket pieces each with a pocket lining piece and sew around the outside edge with a ¼” seam. If you would like to quilt the tote’s pockets, do that now.

Iron on Fusible Interfacing on Quilting ToteFree Patter

Step 3

Then lay both side pieces and both pocket pieces down so that the lining side is facing up. Align a strip of binding along a long edge (this will now be the ‘top’ of each piece). Remember — you should have already ironed the strips in half the ‘hot dog’ way. Sew the binding in place with a ⅝” (aka slightly large ¼”) seam on all 4 pieces, and then trim the binding to size.

Sewing on the Binding

Step 4

Then flip all of the pieces over so the outside is facing up and wrap the binding around the top edge. Pin the binding in place and then secure it by sewing a seam right next (~1/16″) to the edge of the binding. Then set the pocket pieces aside.


Step 5

Next, burn the ends of of your handle webbing to prevent fraying and then align the ends of each handle piece on the outer side of each side piece. Make sure the handles are not twisted and that outer corner of each handle is 3″ from the top and 3″ from the side. Then pin the handles in place and sew a ~½” square with an ‘X’ through it on each strap end to secure the strap in place.

Burn Edges
3 Inches From Side
3 inches from top

Step 6

Place a pocket piece down on each side piece so that the lining of the pocket is against the outer side of the side pocket. Align the bottoms and sides and sew the pocket piece in place with a ¼” seam along the right, left, and bottom sides. Sew one more seam down the middle of the pocket to create two pouches.

Sew on Pocket

Step 7

Round the bottoms corners of each side piece. This makes it easier to sew the bottom piece to the side pieces. Then set both side pieces aside.


Step 8

With the wrong sides towards the batting, layer the outer bottom piece, bottom batting piece, and lining bottom piece, and then sew around the outside edge with a ¼” seam. If you would like to quilt your totes’ bottom piece, do that now.


Step 9

Then sew binding on to one of the short sides of the bottom piece using the method in step 3 and 4.

Binding on Botton Piece

Step 15

Lining (inside) sides together, align the binded edge of the bottom piece along the top right of a side piece and then sew the bottom piece to the side piece with a ½” seam. As you get to the curve you trimmed in the side piece, stop your needle and adjust the bottom piece to align around the curve every 2-3 stitches. Then keep sewing, stopping and adjusting every few stitches until you make it around each curve. Stop sewing 3 inches from top edge of the side piece on the far side.


Step 16

Next, lining sides together, align the top right of the other side piece to the free binded edge of the bottom piece. Sew the side piece to the bottom piece as you did in piece 15 (though the side piece will be on top of the bottom piece this time). Again, stop sewing 3 inches from binding of the side piece on the far side.

Step 17

At this point, the unbinded edge of the bottom piece will be a flap that is taller than the top edges of the side pieces. Trim this flip so it is the same height of the side pieces, and then bind this raw edge with the method in steps 3-4.

Excess Fabric

Step 18

Finish sewing the last 3″ of seams for the bottom piece/side pieces, and then trim the raw edges on both sides to ~¼”.

Finishing upt the seams of the Quilting Tote Free Pattern
Trim the Quilting Tote Free Pattern

Step 19

Now we need to sew the binding to those long edges you just finished sewing. But, before we do this, take your binding strip and open it. Fold the top ½” down and then close the binding strip. This will hide the fraying raw edge. Repeat this with a second strip.

Hide binding edge

Step 20

Finally, sew the binding strip along a long raw edge, following the instructions in step 3, but stopping 3″ from the top edge on the far side. Trim the binding to ½” above the top edge and fold that excess ½” into the binding (like we did in step 19), and finish sewing the binding on with the method in step 3 and 4. Lastly, sew a binding on the raw edge on the other side as well.

Sewing on the final Binding Quilting Tote Free pattern
Finishing Binding
Finishing Binding Quilting Tote Free Pattern

And there she is–you did it! Again! Simple and quick storage that will make sewing in a small room more colorful and organized.

Sew on!

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