Halloween Trick-or-Treat Quilted Tote Bag. Free Sewing Tutorial & Pattern.
Fabric selection is the best part of bag prep.
As soon as I saw these fun, bold prints, I knew they’d be perfect for trick-or-treat bags. The prints are medium in scale great for showcasing on a whole cloth project.
The grey diamond print is perfect for an accent as you don’t want the darker color to overtake your project. The orange mini dot is the perfect lining fabric. It’s light enough to let you see inside your bag easily and ties together the prints from the front. For the same reason that I love it for a lining, it makes a poor choice for an outer fabric as it would get dirty quickly.
Once you’ve selected your fabrics, you are ready to assemble them for quilting.
1/2 yard of feature fabric (pumpkins)
1/2 yard of lining fabric (orange dot)
1/3 yard of accent fabric (grey diamonds)
1/2 yard cotton batting
fat quarter of fusible fleece
basting spray (I use 505)
pumpkins: (2) 13″ wide x 12″ tall (fussy cut your fabric to best showcase the design)
diamonds: (2) 13″ wide x 2.75″ tall
lining: (2) 14″ x 16″
batting: (2) 1.5″ x 15.5″
1. With a 1/4″ seam, sew the grey diamond piece to the bottom of the feature fabric piece along the 13″ edge. Press & repeat.
2. Center the fabric on the batting piece and place the lining fabric underneath. The fabric is wrong side together with the batting to make a quilt sandwich.
3. Use a Hera marker (a non-permanent marking tool) to mark straight lines on your fabric to guide you when quilting.
4. Quilt with straight lines. Set your stitch length to 3.5 and start and end in the batting. Dense straight line quilting will give your bag some body and structure.
5. Trim your panel to 13″ wide x 13.5″ tall. Be sure to trim both panels the same way so that your grey strip at the bottom is the same width on both pieces.
French Seams are EASY! Plus there are really only four simple steps in making a french seam.
1. Place your fabrics WRONG SIDES TOGETHER and pin This will seem wrong your brain will protest, but override it and just go with it!
2. Sew a scant 1/4″ seam along the two sides and across the bottom. Since our bag doesn’t have a separate lining, we will be covering the raw edge at the top later on.
3. Turn your bag inside out and poke out the corners. Sew with a 3/8″ seam along the two sides and across the bottom. Backstitch at the beginning and end.
4. Once more, turn your bag right side out and poke out the corners. Ta-da! You just completed a french seam!
A french seam gives you a polished look because it hides the raw edges. It is perfect for bags that don’t have a separate lining such as this trick-or-treat bag.
Not-So-Bias Binding for the top of our Trick-or-Treat bags.
Quick and easy, this is just like making quilt binding.
1. Cut one piece of grey fabric 2.5″ x 33″.
2. Fold in half (wrong sides together) and press.
3. Open fabric and fold the edges toward the center crease. Press each side flat.
4. Fold the fabric in half lengthwise once more and press, making sure that the top fabric is slightly shorter than the bottom. You should be able to see a bit of the bottom fabric.
5. Slip the binding on the exposed edges on the top of the bag. Place the shorter side on the outside of the bag. Starting at the side seam, pin in place, leaving a 3″ tail. Pin around the top of the bag, leaving a 3″ tail and gap at the end. Sew along the bottom of the binding, catching the backside as you go. Backstitch at the beginning and end.
6. Overlap binding ends and trim so there is a 1/2″ overhang. Twist the binding strips so they are right sides together and sew with a 1/4″ seam.
7. Untwist, finger press the seam flat and pin in place over the remaining raw edge.
Sew in place, backstitching at the beginning and end.
How to Make Bag Handles
These bag handles are quick and easy and can be used on any bag.
Be sure to pin the diagram at the end of the post for easy reference!
Step 4 in our Trick-or-Treat bag assembly: Quick and Easy Handles!
(4) pieces of grey fabric 4″ x 16″
(8) pieces of Pellon’s Fusible Fleece 1″ x 15″
*TIP: Determine how wide you want your handles by folding fabric in half then in half again. (Your desired finished width x 4 + .5″ for folding.)
1. Fold your fabric strips in half length wise and press. Open and fold the edges in to the center crease. Press again. Open the fabric. You should see 4 channels. This is just like the steps we took to make the Not So Bias Binding in Step 3.
2. Center and fuse the strips of Fusible Fleece to the inner two channels. There should be a 1/2″ of fabric exposed at each end.
3. Fold the short ends over to cover the Fusible Fleece. Press.
4. Fold the outer edges to the center crease and press. Fold the handle in half again and press.
5. Topstitch along all sides, backstitching at the beginning and end. Use your Blindhem foot for consistent stitching all the way around.
6. Pin your handles at 2″ down from the top and 2.5″ over from each side.
7. Sew your handles on your bag making an X for added strength. Start at the top left corner. See diagram above. (1-2, 2-3, 3-1, 1-4, 4-2.) Raise your needle and pivot your fabric at each corner. Backstitch at the beginning and end.
That’s all there is to it! Handles done!