DIY 16oz Canvas Tote Bag with Flat Fell Seams

My teen requested a tote bag,  basic style, just big enough to put in some books and folders. She doesn’t want to over-carry so this is what I came up with :


I flat fell seamed the sides which makes lining the bag unnecessary. The 16 oz canvas is already thick enough to give the bag a good body. I wasn’t sure my sewing machine could handle this type of seams. With it being on the sides, will there be enough room to sew all the way to the end ? But really, no problem at all. It’s difficult to pin through several layers of 16 oz canvas, so wrap the seams as you sew and go slowly.

Flat fell seams are pretty neat. I love seams that doesn’t need zigzagging :

For the outer pocket, I sew up the opening with an upside down triangle :

sew the pocket opening to prevent from ripping.jpg

This will prevent the sides from ripping of the bag. For the bag straps, I use the same fabric to make it. This part is difficult to sew. Since the straps are folded over at the ends, it will be very thick ( at the seams, there will be 8 layers not including the bag itself ), and also create a steep climb for the sewing feet. An easy way to fix this is just pound it with a hammer until everything is flatten !

For this fabric I use a #15 needle but anything number above that is okay. Alright-ee , will be back next week with another bag tutorial 🙂