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a social tote review.

So many patterns, not enough time! I have made a few things in the past couple of weeks, in an attempt to justify my rampaging craft book and pattern spending. So here's a review!

First pattern in line was the Social Tote. I have a deep, abiding love for Anna Graham's bag patterns; my go-to handbag is a 241 and I've made most of her patterns as gifts. And if you follow me on Instagram, you have seen Architextures and Botanics projects in my feed! I figured it would be a slam dunk.

Australian readers, I bought my pattern from Kate Quilts. You can also get it from Polka Dot Tea Fabrics and Kim Bradley Creations.

So this is my Social Tote.

Social Tote

I chose to use a Kei fat quarter I really loved for the inside (purchased from Polka Dot Tea Fabrics), my favorite blue Pearl Bracelets for the outside, and a skerrick of Cat Nap for the handles. The bias binding is another fabric from Polka Dot Tea called Geo Dots.

Social Tote

It does hold my handwork, but it's not my favorite handwork carrier. (These are.) The Social Tote pattern was tricky in places, so I would suggest having the website open to the support page and using that as a backup! Once you get it, you get it, and I'd like to try another one with a few adjustments.

Social Tote

I used Pellon fusible fleece (987F I believe) and Pellon Craft Fuse 808 as they are what I use for every bag, tote, basket etc. I think I should have interfaced MORE of the lining, to keep it strong and boxy.

What I like about the pattern: the pieces are all cuttable from instructions, so you don't have to trace anything or print out eleventy pages and sacrifice several forests before you even choose fabric. There are photo tutorials on the website that complement the pattern perfectly. It is fairly compact and for a confident intermediate (that's me!) it only takes an afternoon and evening to put together.

What I didn't like: there could be a LOT more to the pattern instructions; without the website, I would have been lost. I think the entire inside need more interfacing so the compartments are stiffer. And it's shallow; I'd like it to be a good five inches deep and it barely clocks in at two and a half. The tiny pockets on the front are cute, but not functional. And I'd love it a million times more if, as well as being bigger and deeper, the inside compartments were instead tiny removable baskets.

Verdict: I'd like to make another...someday. I definitely wouldn't recommend this to a beginner though, and if you're like me and you're used to carrying around big lovely fabric baskets, you may find this to be a mite too small and shallow for everyday use!

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