Doll Tote Bag: a sorta tutorial kind of thing. Maybe.

I wanted to blog a big more regularly than I have so far but I’ve been working very hard and then flopping in the evenings, rather than thinking ‘woohoo sewing time!’ – nothing dramatic but maybe just a hangover from sewing til insane o’clock all through June.

What was I sewing? Beautiful frocks? Kind of. Maybe. I was also sewing this, my first proper bag. It’s a pattern from the girl & doll book designed to make taking your doll anywhere easy. Except Wee Bear won’t let another child even look at Lily Sugar so… Mostly it’s doll containment right now.

In theory, should one have a child who takes a doll somewhere, this is a superb idea. I’m planning to retrofit a seatbelt for her, otherwise it’s all a bit unbalanced & she looks like she’s about to go for a burton out the back of the bag… In fact, a kind of sling/backpack might be better. But not if you’re wearing a party dress.

It’s basically a series of rectangles: here are the hand-drawn instructions. I found them really easy to follow and clear.


I traced all the pieces out & drew the unprinted pieces (the base and sides) onto my trusty Swedish tracing paper *insert smug face at having ordered two rolls ages ago* – makes it all much easier.


I ordered this spiffy & easy to cut ‘n’ sew laminated cotton in a cute Urban Zoologie print and teamed it up with some bright fuschia polka dots. As you can see I toyed with the spring-colour way chevrons but went for the punchier option. Hey, I am regularly whacked when Wee Bear overloads & melts down so punchy seems appropriate.

Putting it altogether was pretty straightforward: I particularly liked the pockets.

As they were incredibly easy – rectangles of fabric, held in place by a single length of cotton webbing: job done!

Assembling the sides was likewise easy – I do like a simple straight line. It looks like a box, especially if you interline with padded calico.

And even adding the base wasn’t too bad: until I added the plastic grid to keep it stiffened.

20130717-182158.jpg (the heinous photography caused by working after midnight…)

The rather cool-but-ineffective strap to close up: not really much use but I like it. The raw edges are all enclosed with bias tape (ready made this time).

It was finished in a night – a late one – and considering that it was supposed to be in plain quilting cotton, I think it turned out really well. A word of advice; Plush Addict is a dangerous site. They have a permanent discount in orders over Β£100 and their service is second to none. You’ve been warned.



  1. This is really cute! And yes, v jealous of your Swedish Tracing Paper. That stuff is like hens’ teeth these days.

    • I feel smug but a bit panicky – only one full roll left! I’ve taken to re-using pieces that are large (like skirt patterns) after I’m done & cutting it for girl & doll patterns πŸ™‚

  2. Can you please tell me the name of the book where you got this pattern from?

    • Hi there! Sorry for the delay – I used
      – overall I’d say there are enough good, basic patterns to make it worth adding to your doll library. There are quite a few specific techniques that I’ve added to my repertoire and it’s clear the author has spent a loooooong time making doll clothes. Enjoy!

  3. becky sulcer

    I have this pattern too but am confused on the dimensions for the front and back???? Are they really 51/2 by 7 inches????

    • Hi Becky! Sorry for the delay. I will check this but can you compare it to the sides? Those sound like the ‘ends’ to me but maybe it depends on what way we look at the bag πŸ™‚

  4. Kimberly Nelson

    Came across your tutorial via Pinterest and just wanted to pop in and say thanks for sharing! I was able to make this for my daughter for her upcoming birthday and it turned out great! I need to work on my bias tape work, but other than that, I love it. Thanks again for sharing your source and tutorial!

  5. beverly harding

    wher did you get the book with the pattern in it?

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