This here is my very gleeful announcement that the Port-&-Sort Tote Pattern is FINISHED and has been sent to the testing lab.
Let us scheme together, therefore, that sometime in July, the pattern will go on sale and we can all begin making these bags, well in time for the holidays! How's that for unprocrastinating?
In the meanwhile, I will work on the free tutorial for those collapsible organizers that you can make thousands of to go with your totes, so that when the pattern goes on sale, you have everything you need to make the full "set".
Also in the meanwhile, here are the materials and skill/technique lists from the pattern. Some notes:
- Some of the recommended materials might sound unfamiliar. If so, the third screenshot suggests alternatives of more common fabrics. That said, I really like Therma-flec (that's the silver ironing-board fabric) and ripstop nylon for the inner parts of this bag - they are light-weight and easily compressed while still feeling strong and non-cloth-like, and give a more commercial-bag than home-made feel. You easily can buy both at JoAnn here and here.
- You will need a separating zipper. You cannot get by with a non-separating zipper - the bag will not work. I like the slightly chunkier zippers like the sort on jackets and duffles, rather than on garments and pencil cases. Again, fabric stores have them. Both nylon coil and plastic tooth zippers will work. 26" is the ideal length - it will give you some leeway when manipulating the head and tail ends into seams. However, 25" or 24" will work, too - the pattern shows you how to use shorter zippers. I would not go with a 22" or shorter zipper, unless you don't mind the bag being zipped only partway down each side.
- You can make this bag without any strap hardware - one of the three strap variations is of a plain, fabric strap. If you'd like to try the variations with hardware and would like recommendations for stores, I buy my hardware from Singapore (not helpful, I know) and on Etsy. I regularly buy metal loops and rings and buckles and such from LoraLee's store, and I buy my invisible magnetic snaps from El's store. I buy my zippers in person from SR Harris (they're $1!) and JoAnn because I like being able to measure the lengths, check the coil size and match colors.
Shoot me an email or leave a comment if you have any questions!