My mom has been telling me for weeks that she needs a new purse. I’m not sure if it is a not-so-subtle hint to me or a plea to the bag gods to send her something sweet. Either way, her Birthday was last week and I happily whipped up this southwest style Caravan Tote for her.
Pattern: Caravan Tote by Noodlehead
Materials: 1 repeat of Pendleton Wool (in-store), 1 1/4 yard lining fabric, 1/2 yard pocket fabric, 1/2 yard Lining Center Panel fabric, 1/2 yard Annie’s Soft and Stable (in-store), 1 set of 26" leather handles
Modifications: Lengthened the bag by 2.5”, interfaced with Annie’s Soft and Stable
I have made a BUNCH of different Noodlehead patterns and I must say, I love them all. If you are new to bag making, looking to challenge yourself, and want a totally professional looking finished product, look no further than Anna Graham’s flawless patterns. The Caravan tote and matching pouch are no exception. I loved this bag so much after I finished it that I had a hard time giving it away.
Although the pattern calls for a fusible woven interfacing, I decided to use Annie’s Soft and Stable to stabilize the bag instead. I wanted something very firm that would make the bag stand up on its own. That way it would be more like a purse than a tote, but still have the cute and casual look of a tote. I’m really happy with the results and would definitely do it again if I were to make another.
I made the bag slightly taller than it called for. I wanted to make the most of my Pendleton pattern, so I lengthened my bag to accommodate the full fabric design which ended up being 2.5” taller than it called for. If you are making a similar Pendleton bag yourself, keep in mind that you have to make the gusset out of the bottom of your exterior piece. To make sure the pattern goes right down the center of the bag, you need to cut the size of the gusset (2.5”) off the top of the Pendleton piece. Very simple, but it makes all the difference.
If you are thinking about making this adorable bag but are not sure you want to take it on yourself, consider taking one of our classes this winter!