JELLY ROLL TOTE BAG PATTERN





Jelly roll bags

Jelly roll bags

 

Over the months I have had many emails from ladies who craft for charity and I have promised to put up some suitable patterns.  These jelly roll tote bags are designed specifically for that purpose, but they are easy to make and can be made from any spare fabric just for yourself or your family and friends.

 

Fabric requirements for the jelly roll tote bags

I think that they vary, but the Fabric Freedom jelly roll that I used contained fifty strips of fabric in a wonderful variety of colours.  For each jelly roll bag you will need about 1/2 yard for the lining and at most eight strips of fabric 2.1/2″ wide, so you will get a minimum of six bags from a jelly roll plus 3 yards of lining.

Making the first jelly roll tote bag

Sew together seven strips of fabric

Sew together seven strips of fabric

 

Choose four strips of fabric and cut them into 10.1/2″ lengths.  This length is chosen to give you exactly four lengths from each strip.  With right sides together and using a 1/4″ seam, sew seven strips together as shown.  Repeat this with another seven strips for the back panel of the bag.  This leaves you two strips spare for the next jelly roll tote bag.

 

 

Sew strips to top and bottom

Sew strips to top and bottom

 

Using another two strips from the jelly roll, cut four lengths of 14.1/2″.  Sew one each across the top and bottom of both panels.  Again, this will leave you some spare for the next bag.  Place the two panels right sides together and sew round three edges – the sides and bottom of the jelly roll tote bag.

 

Make the straps for the jelly roll tote bag

Turn the straps right side out

Turn the straps right side out

Sew down both sides of the straps

Sew down both sides of the straps

Cut another strip in half across the short edge to give two lengths of 21″.  These form the straps of the tote bag.  Cut a strips 2.1/2″ wide from the lining fabric and cut this in half to make two lengths of 21″.  Using a 1/4 seam and with right sides together sew one jelly roll length to one lining length of fabric down both sides, leaving the short edges open.  Turn this tube right side out by turning the edges over and pulling it through.  Press the straps and then sew down each side to hold the strap together.  This also gives a little more strength to the straps.

Assembling the jelly roll tote bags

Pin the straps to the jelly roll bag

Pin the straps to the jelly roll bag

Use two pins per strap to secure them

Use two pins per strap to secure them

Pin the ends of the straps to the top of the jelly roll bag with all raw edges togethr.  Check that they are the same distance apart on the back and front panels.  Cut two 14.1/2″ squares of lining fabric and with right sides togethr sew down each side to form a tube.

 

Pull the lining tube over the tote bag

Pull the lining tube over the tote bag

 

With right sides together, pull this lining tube over the top of the bag and straps, matching the raw edges.  Pin in place and sew round the top edge of the bag, taking care that all the layers of the straps are caught up in the stitching.

 

 

Pull the bottom of the lining up away from the bag and turn under a small seam at the open end.  This will be the bottom of the lining when it is pushed back inside the jelly roll tote bag.  Stitch close to the edge and push the lining back inside the bag.

 

Sew a hem at the bottom of the lining

Sew a hem at the bottom of the lining

 

Pull the bottom of the lining up away from the bag and turn under a small seam at the open end. This will be the bottom of the lining when it is pushed back inside the jelly roll tote bag.  Stitch close to the edge and push the lining back inside the bag.

 

 

Stitch around the top

Stitch around the top

 

Pin around the top of the tote bag and stitch in place.  This gives a sharp edge to the top of the bag and stops the lining from coming out too easily.  That’s the first jelly roll tote bag complete.

 

 

Alternative options for the jelly roll tote bags

Begin with a square in the centre

Begin with a square in the centre

Keep adding strips

Keep adding strips

 

A different jelly roll tote bag can be made to use up smaller lengths of strips using the courthouse pattern as shown her.

 

 

An alternative pattern

An alternative pattern

 

Begin with a 2.1/2″ square and add strips top and bottom and then to each side until you have reached the size that you want.  I do find that sometimes I need to use a little extra fabric from my stash when I get towards th end of the jelly roll strips so that I am not stuck with colours that don’t go or mismatched straps.

 

Sew three strips together

Sew three strips together

Use the strips of three and add strips

Use the strips of three and add strips

 

To make a tote bag from scraps or from the end of the jelly roll, you can use 2.1/2″ squares:  seven rows of seven.  this one was made by sewing three strips together and cutting into 2.1/2″ strips.

 

Scrap squares panel

Scrap squares panel

 

These are just a few ideas for the jelly roll tote bags – you can use any quilt block pattern to make up a 14.1/2″ square, or you can make different size bags by varying the panel size.  I just find that the 14.1/2″ panel is quite an economic size to make.

If you enjoy sewing with jelly rolls you might like to see the simple jelly roll quilt pattern.

 

 

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