In Bags & Accessories, Sew-along, Tips & techniques


Now that we have our lining pockets sewn we’re ready to tackle Day 3 of the Field Study Tote Sew-along! Let’s get started on the exterior pocket with the magnetic snap closure.


Field Study Tote Sew-along


Exterior Pocket

Place one Lower Panel, right sides together, on top of the Exterior Pocket piece aligning one set of long edges. Pin, and sew together with a 3/8” seam allowance. Press the seam allowance down towards the Lower Panel and topstitch the seam 1/8” from the seam on the Lower Panel.


Field Study Tote Sew-along


Next, create the Pocket Tab by folding the side edges of the Pocket Tab piece lengthwise towards the center, then press. Topstitch 1/8” from each folded edge. Now fold the Pocket Tab crosswise in half . Center the sewn Pocket Tab along the top edge of the Exterior Pocket, aligning raw edges. Machine baste to secure at 1/8” from the edge.


Field Study Tote Sew-along


Install Magnetic Snap

Fuse a 1” x 1” piece of fusible fleece to the wrong side of the Exterior Pocket Lining 3/4” below the top edge, centered side to side. This will provide reinforcement for the snap.


Field Study Tote Sew-along


1) Mark the snap placement in the center of the fleece square with a pencil. Center the hole of one metal washer over the mark. Make a mark inside the two rectangular prong holes. Set the washer aside and use a seam ripper to make a small slit through the fleece, interfacing, and lining fabric on each prong mark.

2) Realign the washer on the interfacing markings. From the right side of the fabric, push the prongs of the “female” snap component through the slits.

3) With your fingers or the end of a pencil, bend the prongs down toward each other.

4) Sometimes I give this an extra squeeze by putting the prong side down on a hard surface and pressing firmly from the snap side. You want this to be as flat as possible.


Field Study Tote Sew-along


To finish the pocket, place the Exterior Pocket Lining and the main Exterior Pocket right sides together, aligning the upper edges, sandwiching the Pocket Tab between layers. Pin, and sew across the top edge with a 3/8” seam allowance. Press the seam and topstitch 1/4” from the edge.


Field Study Tote Sew-along


Aligning the bottom and side edges, layer the sewn Exterior Pocket, lining side down, onto the right side of the Bag Back. With the disappearing ink marker, mark where the pocket snap touches the Bag Back. Push a straight pin at this mark through the Bag Back and transfer the mark to the wrong side of the Bag Back. Set the Exterior Pocket aside. Following the snap installation process above, fuse a piece of reinforcement fleece to the wrong side of the Bag Back and install the “male”snap component.


Field Study Tote Sew-along


Layer and realign the Exterior pocket onto the Bag Back and machine baste the sides and bottom edges together at 1/8”. Exterior Pocket, done!

Next post we’ll make the Bag Front and Handles!

See the rest of the Sew-along posts here:
Schedule and Prizes
Day 1
Day 2

We’d love to see your progress! Show us your photos in the Facebook Group. You can also share photos on Facebook and Instagram tagged #fieldstudysewalong

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