Embroidery Library

Beach Towel Tote

 

Free project instructions to make a beach towel tote!
Transform a simple beach towel into this season's must-have tote with a little embroidery and a lot of creativity!

Nylon lining makes it the perfect bag to bring wet swimsuits and towels to and from the beach or pool.

Project instructions are detailed below!
 

Free project instructions to make a beach towel tote!


Supplies Needed:

**Terry cloth beach towel or
  bath towel (for front and back
  panels - mine towel is 32"
  wide by 58" high)

**1/3 yard sturdy cotton fabric
  like twill or denim
  (for pockets - I used twill)

**
5/8 yard nylon
  (for inner lining -
  I used ripstop nylon)

 
Supplies Continued: 

**Medium weight cutaway stabilizer

**Water soluble stabilizer (for topping - I prefer Sulky Solvy or Sulky Ultra Solvy)


**Temporary spray adhesive


**Air-erase pen or dressmaker's pencil (for marking and placement)

**3 3/4 yards (132") of 1 1/2" wide cotton or nylon strapping
  (for shoulder straps - I used cotton strapping)

 


Designs Used:
I used the medium size of the Seadreams Seahorse design, the small size of the Seadreams Seashell design, and the small size of the Seadreams Fish design. Find many more designs to add a splash to your beach towel tote by visiting the Beach & Seashore department!

Finished Size:  25" wide by 17 1/2" high

 


Free project instructions to make a beach towel tote!
 

To get started, lay the towel flat with the right side facing up. The top edge of the short end of the towel should be at the top. Using an air-erase pen or other marking tool, measure 18 1/2" down along each side edge starting at each top corner. Draw a line connecting the marks and cut the towel along this line. Also, measure in 26" along the top and bottom edges starting at the top right and bottom corner. Draw a line connecting the marks and cut along this line. The final size of the front piece is 26" wide by 18 1/2" high.
 

Create a paper template of the design by printing it at full size using embroidery software. If you haven't used software to make templates before, these handy instructions show the steps.

Place the template in the center of the towel with the top edge of the design about 7" from the top edge of the fabric. If there is a band on the towel (my towel has a band) position the top edges of the design at least 1/2" from the bottom edge of the band. Center the design side to side by measuring equal distances in between the center of the design and the side edges of the towel. Poke a hole in the center of the template and mark the fabric. Also, mark the horizontal and vertical axis points.
 



Free project instructions to make a beach towel tote!
 


Remove the template and draw lines connecting the marks. Spray a piece of medium weight cutaway stabilizer with temporary adhesive and smooth the fabric on top. I also added one piece of water soluble stabilizer on top of the towel (I prefer Sulky Solvy or Sulky Super Solvy). This topping helps prevent the stitches from sinking too far into the terry cloth.

Hoop all three layers together by aligning the marks on the hoop with the lines on the fabric.
 



Free project instructions to make a beach towel tote!
 

Attach the hoop to the machine and load the design. Move the hoop so that the needle is directly over the center point on the fabric. Embroider the design.

For more information on embroidering on towels click here
.



Free project instructions to make a beach towel tote!
 

When the design has finished, carefully tear away the water soluble stabilizer from the front, and also trim away the excess stabilizer from the backside of the embroidery. If any small bits of the water soluble stabilizer remain, you can use a tweezers to remove them. Or, you can wet your fingertips with water and gently brush the stabilizer away.



Free project instructions to make a beach towel tote!
 
Now I will prepare the fabric for the front of the pockets. Draw a 9" wide by 9" high square onto the sturdy cotton fabric (I used twill). Measure and mark the center of each side of the shape by measuring and dividing by two. Draw lines connecting the marks.


Free project instructions to make a beach towel tote!
 
Create a paper template of the design. Poke a hole in the center of the template and align it with the center point on the fabric. Make sure the design fits well within the shape. There should be at least one inch of space in between the outer edges of the design and the edges of the shape.

Free project instructions to make a beach towel tote!
 
Remove the template. Hoop the fabric with the stabilizer and embroider the design. When the design has finished, trim away the stabilizer on the backside of the embroidery and cut out the shape.

To create the back of the pocket, cut a piece of fabric to 9" wide by 9" high. Align the embroidered front piece and back piece, right sides together, pin in place and sew a 1/2" seam along the top edge only.

Fold the fabric along the top seam and align the front and back, wrong sides together. Press the top seam with an iron. Top stitch a 1/8" seam along the top folded edge and the side and bottom edges.

Repeat this process for a total of two pockets.
 



Free project instructions to make a beach towel tote!
 
Now it is time to assemble the outer shell of the bag. Lay the embroidered front of the bag flat with the right side facing up. Align the pockets at each bottom corner, right sides facing up, and pin them in place.


Free project instructions to make a beach towel tote!
 
Cut two 66" lengths of 1 1/2" wide strapping (one length for each side of the bag). Pin the strap in place along the inner edges of the pockets with the outer edges of the strap about 8" from the outer edge of the front piece (the inner edges of the pockets will tuck underneath the strapping about 1/2"). Allow the raw ends of the strap to extend down past the bottom edge of the front piece about 1/2". Attach the strap by sewing a 1/4" seam along the edges of the strap that cover the front piece.


Free project instructions to make a beach towel tote!
 
To prepare the back of the bag, cut the opposite end of the towel just as you did for the front piece (back piece is 26" wide by 18 1/2" high). Also, add the straps to the back piece just as you did for the front piece (outer edges of the straps should be about 8" in from the outer edges of the back piece). Align the front and back pieces, right sides together. Align the top band and the straps along the bottom edges. Sew a 1/2" seam along the side and bottom edges only. Turn the outer shell right side out and push out the bottom corners.


Free project instructions to make a beach towel tote!
 
To add the inner lining, cut two pieces of the nylon (I used ripstop nylon) to 26" wide by 19 1/2" high. Align the pieces, right sides together, pin in place, and sew a 1/2" seam along the side and bottom edges only. Fold the top edge of the inner lining over one inch to the wrong side. Insert the inner lining inside the outer shell, wrong sides together.

Align the side seams together and pin the top edge of the inner lining in place leaving about 1/4" of space in between the top edge of the lining and the top edge of the outer shell. Sew a 1/4" seam along the folded edge of the inner lining.

And your bag is complete!
 


Free project instructions to make a beach towel tote!
Make a splash at the beach or pool this season with this roomy tote!

Click here for a printable version of these project instructions.

Get Acrobat Reader


 

 


Products used in this Project:

Seadreams Seahorse $6.49 - $7.99

Available in 4 Sizes:

6.82" x 11.75" | 5.46" x 9.40" | 4.57" x 7.80" | 4.03" x 6.88"

Seadreams Fish $6.99 - $7.99

Available in 3 Sizes:

6.90" x 8.42" | 5.85" x 7.14" | 4.83" x 5.88"

Seadreams Seashell $6.99 - $7.99

Available in 3 Sizes:

6.91" x 9.23" | 5.84" x 7.81" | 4.87" x 6.51"

Seadreams Octopus $6.99 - $7.99

Available in 3 Sizes:

8.89" x 6.90" | 7.54" x 5.85" | 6.29" x 4.88"

Seadreams Sand Dollar $6.49 - $7.99

Available in 4 Sizes:

7.81" x 7.53" | 7.15" x 6.90" | 6.07" x 5.85" | 5.04" x 4.86"