top of page

William Morris Patchwork Tote Bag - Sewing Tutorial

Updated: Apr 23, 2022

If you're looking to make an everyday tote bag but with a twist, this patchwork bag is perfect! The whirlwind technique of quilting is a great way to use up any scrap fabric you may have left over from previous projects and you'll get the full effect by using contrasting prints and colours. You could also use this same technique to make fun cushion covers!

Dunelm have teamed up with Craft Cotton Co. and The Victoria and Albert Museum to bring an exclusive 5 piece collection that's available online and in stores now.

Shop here - William Morris

What you’ll need:

36" x 5" of William Morris fabric A

36” x 8” of William Morris fabric B

36” x 15” of William Morris fabric C (to allow for the trim and handles)

44” x 28” lining fabric (this allows for the borders)

30" x 16" wadding – I’ve used 80/20


Quilting ruler

Basting spray

Basic sewing tools – iron, sewing machine


16 strips of fabric each measuring 2.5” x 9” 4 of design A, eight of design B, four of design C

Four 11” x 3” strips of lining for the top and bottom borders

Four 16” x 3” strips of lining for the side borders

Two strips of fabric C each measuring 4” x 22” for the handles

Two strips of fabric C measuring 15” x 2”

Finished size:

11 x 13 x 3

1. Sew the strips right sides together in rows of four and press the seams to one side. Cut four 8” squares from the strips.

2. Cut each square in half diagonally.

3. Arrange the triangles in groups of four with the right angles in the centre. You will have two blocks, one for the front of the bag and one for the back.

4. Sew the triangles together in pairs, then sew two pairs together matching the centre seams. Trim the finished block to make square if necessary.

5. Sew the top and bottom border strips right sides together to the top and bottom of both blocks.

6. Sew the side borders right sides together to the sides of blocks.

7. Place over wadding and adhere with basting spray. Repeat with the back panel of the bag.

8. Quilt any way you like; I’ve chosen to echo quilt by sewing ¼” each side of the seams of the triangles and around the square.

9. With the 2” strips of fabric C, fold both the long sides over by ½” and press. You will have two x 1” strips of fabric. Top stitch these across the top borders of the bag, centrally on the border.

10. Cut a 1.5” square from each bottom corner of the bag panels.

11. Use one of these panels as a template to cut two lining pieces to the same size.

12. For the straps, fold the long sides of the handle strips to the centre, then in half again and press. Top stitch along each side.

13. Sew the straps facing downwards to the top of the bag, 3.5” from each side. Sew the top of the lining to the top of the bag.

14. Repeat with back panel of the bag.

15. Place the front and back panels of the bag right sides together and sew all around, avoid sewing the cut-out corners. Leave a turning gap of about 4” in one side of the lining.

16. Pull open the cut-out corners and sew straight across, make the base square.

17. Turn the right side out and sew the turning gap closed. Push the lining inside the bag and top stitch around the top to finish.

Picture taken at the Victoria and Albert Museum on the Marble Staircase

Fabric commission from The Craft Cotton Co and Dunelm to create this project


bottom of page