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Making a quilted tote bag using a modern disappearing 9 patch

Yesterday I showed you how to make a modern placemat using a disappearing nine patch technique with fabrics from the Banyon Batiks Intaglio collection from Northcott.

 

Placemat made from a disappearing nine patch block

 

Today I’ll use the same technique, add some diagonal contrasting strips and create a tote bag.

materials

Let’s start sewing!

  • Make a nine patch block using the 7½” squares from the Banyan Batiks Intaglio fabric. The detailed instructions for this are in the QUILTsocial blog post Making a nine patch block with the new Banyan Batiks Intaglio.
  • Cut each nine patch block into 3 unequal sections.

 

Cut the nine patch block into 3 unequal sections.

 

  • Rearrange the strips and sew them back together, shifting the sections a little so the seams are not all lined up.
  • The pieced block will be approximately 19″ x 19″.

 

Sew the strips together to create a new block.

 

  • Place a long rotary cutting ruler on the block, lining up the 60° angle line on the ruler with one of the seam lines.
  • Make 2 – 60° cuts in the block to create 3 diagonal sections.

 

Line up the 60° mark on the ruler on a seam.

 

 

Cut pieced block into 3 sections.

 

  • From a contrasting fabric (I used the dark brown Banyan Batiks Shadows fabric), cut 1 – 1¾” x WOF and 1 – 1¼” x WOF strip. These are the sizes I used, but it’s OK to use different size strips if you wish.
  • Sew the 2 brown strips between the pieced sections. This requires working with bias edges now, so handle carefully to keep the fabric from stretching.
  • Sew with the brown strip underneath, check to make sure the seam allowances on the pieced section stay flat.

 

Stitch brown strip to pieced section.

 

  • Square up the edges.

 

Use a fabric marker to mark outside cutting lines.

 

 

Extra fabric has been cut off to square up outside edges.

 

My piece was approximately 19½” x 18½”, but because this is an improv style of piecing, yours may be different.

  • Cut 2 pieces of contrasting fabric (mine is the gray Shadows fabric), 1¼” x the length of the pieced section.
  • Fold in half lengthwise, wrong sides together to make 2 long strips.
  • From brown fabric, cut a strip 9½” by the length of the pieced section. This piece will determine the width of your tote bag so you can change the size if you wish.
  • Sew 1 of the 1¼” strips to one side of the pieced section with a ⅛” seam, aligning the raw edges.
  • Sew the brown piece to the pieced section with the narrow strip attached. The narrow strip will form a small flap.
  • Sew the remaining narrow gray strip on the opposite side of the pieced section, aligning raw edges.

 

Contrasting strips are sewn on

 

  • Layer pieced section, batting and backing. This backing fabric won’t show when the tote bag is finished.
  • Using a walking foot, quilt as desired. I used diagonal and straight line stitching, but feel free to be creative and do your own thing!

 

Use a walking foot to quilt pieced section, batting and backing.

 

Come back tomorrow and I’ll show you how to turn this modern disappearing nine patch block, made with Banyan Batiks Intaglio and Shadows fabrics, into a tote bag!

 

This is part 3 of 5 in this series.
Go back to part 2: Making placemats using a modern disappearing 9 patch block

Jean has been designing and publishing patterns since 1997. For the past several years she has been designing patterns for new fabric collections by Northcott Fabrics. Her work has been published in several magazines in both Canada and the United States. Jean holds a Fiber Arts Certificate in quilting and has taught extensively throughout Canada, including six national Quilt Canada conferences. She was named "Canadian Teacher of the Year" in 2003 by the Canadian Quilters Association and has won numerous awards for her quilts.

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