How to Add Pockets to a Tote Bag 1944, the famed outdoor clothing company LL Bean came up with a no-fuss solution to what was then a common household problem: transporting ice from home to car and back again. They created a sturdy, water-resistant bag made of canvas that solved the problem for rural families and housewives, and soon the tote became a staple shopping accessory.
If you have a tote bag and are looking for ways to upgrade it, consider adding interior pockets. They’re easy to sew and can add a lot of storage space. Plus, they help to keep your stuff secure and stop pickpockets from sneaking in.
To make an interior pocket, measure the width and length of your tote bag’s inside and cut a piece of pocket fabric to match those measurements, including seam allowances. To be sure you are getting the right size, cutting your proposed pocket out of a piece of paper before committing to the fabric will give you a good idea of how it will fit in your bag.
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When sewing a zipper into an interior pocket, it is important to use a small, narrow stitch and a very short straight stitch. This will prevent the zipper from catching on your fabric and creating an uneven line. If you are sewing into an existing bag, make sure the zipper is positioned so that it opens towards the right if you’re right-handed or to the left if you’re left-handed.
Pin the pocket fabric to one of the lining pieces, right sides together. Baste the edges to hold them in place.