birthday tote for Leah

My friend Leah was in town this week. Her husband just got his doctorate (congrats Tim!) so they were back in town visiting family and had a small get-together to celebrate. It also happened to be Leah’s birthday so I knew I wanted to bring something over and decided this around mid-afternoon the day of the party. Luckily I had time to pull together this tote bag for a birthday present.


This bag used to be a striped button down midi skirt from the thrift store. It was terribly unflattering and remained so despite my attempts to refashion it. I chopped it up into fabric at some point when I still lived in Alabama and it’s been resting in pieces ever since.

I thought the striped fabric would make a cute summer tote and here it is!

blueandwhite_stripedtote03AI had some grander plans, like putting a pocket on the inside and doing something cool featuring the button down portion of the skirt, but they were scrapped due to time constraints since I decided to bake brownies for the party and make them a card too (did I mention it was also their anniversary several weeks ago?). More than anything, I wanted the tote to be done when it was time to head over there but I managed to pull it off and make all three!

I used two layers of white broadcloth for the lining, and regular fabric for the straps.

There are tiny pleats on the outside of the straps because my lining came out slightly smaller than my outer fabric. I decided to make it a mini design feature since time didn’t allow for seam ripping or resewing. I do like how it breaks up the solidness of the stripes a little.


Leah liked it and said it would work out well for holding her knitting 🙂 I have such crafty friends!


I wish I got to see Leah and Tim more but they live in Oklahoma at present. It was nice to spend an evening with them and other friends though and I wish them safe travels for the rest of their journey.

Thanks to everyone who stopped by and commented on the blue cardigan! I really appreciate having some additional insights.


3 thoughts on “birthday tote for Leah

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