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Thread: What do you use to stiffen the bottom of a tote/purse?

  1. #61
    Super Member Grandma58's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Am I the only one who does not use anything? I do use heavier fabric for my bags and fusible interfacing, they seem pretty sturdy.

  2. #62
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    I had a cutting mat that was completely worn out, so I cut it into rectangles and used it for the bottom of the tote bags I made. Also made an extra sleeve, so the mat could be removed to launder the bag.

  3. #63
    Super Member Debbie B's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Huber Heights, Ohio
    I ask for the heavy cardboard that the Quilt Shop or Fabric Stores throw out when they get to the end of the bolt. It's free for me & the store doesn't have to take it out to the trash. Some bolts have stronger cardboard than others. I'm sure that it is bendable at a certain weight, but so far none of my Bow Tucks bags sag. I've heard of people using foam board from a craft shop, too.

  4. #64
    Junior Member Needle Up's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Quote Originally Posted by gramma nancy View Post
    I am about to make a tote bag for my DD and a purse for an upcoming trip for myself. My question is -- what does everyone use to create a flat, nonbending bottom on their bags? I don't want to put all the work into piecing a nice bag and have it droop.

    In the past I have used plastic needlepoint canvas. I've always liked it because you can cut it very precisely to any size, but it is not quite as stiff as I would like. Any ideas?

    Many thanks to anyone who cares to share.
    I run a small business out of my home and I get a lot of fed x boxes. I cut them to fit and make a sleeve to put the cardboard in. I have made at least 100 totes and it holds up great and most of all it is free.

  5. #65
    Senior Member mrsjdt's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Upstate NY
    I buy my kitty litter in the large, plastic jugs. When empty I cut out the large sides and use them, sometimes doubling them. I also make a "sleeve" inside, so the plastic can be removed when washed. I've also used Very heavy cardboard, usuually 2 layers, one with lines of cardboard running east and west and the other running north and south. Again, making a sleeve so it can be removed for laundering.

  6. #66
    Join Date
    Jun 2011

    Bag bottoms

    I use a material in great supply after an election: those annoying political signs
    made of corrugated plastic! They cut easily, are very stiff, waterproof, and
    can be easily removed from the fabric sleeve I encase them. Then I use the
    metal stakes to prop up plants. Reduce, reuse, recycle, and clean up litter.
    It is especially satisfying to use the signs of the candidates you didn't support...

  7. #67
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    I used double plastic canvas also but lately I have better results with plastic placemates. I use my old ones but you can purchase inexpensive ones in dollar store. They are easy to cut and some of them don't even need the sleeve and are easy to wipe clean. I do like the finish look so I put them in sleeves.

  8. #68
    Super Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Brisbane, Aust
    I go to my local x-ray clinic and ask for the hard plastic sheets that are used for shipping protection of the x-ray film packages. It can be cut to size and it is free.

  9. #69
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Vancouver, BC, Canada
    I'm going to use that quote on my Website if that's okay with you. The one about the kids ... my readers will love it.

  10. #70
    Super Member soccertxi's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Glendale AZ
    Wandering around Home Depot or Lowes is almost as fun to me as the fabric store! (operative word :ALMOST! lol) I found a blank sign- like you might put out front of your house for sale. It is like a corrigated plastic and easily cut with a utility knife. I used it for the bottom of a new tote I made and I love its sturdy lightweight base. Here are pictures of it being cut. The piece was about $5 and I will get about 5 purses or totes, depending on the size. I did cover mine to match, but I dont' think I needed to. I also cut the 'ribs' of the plastic the short way. I am hoping it is a sturdier cut.
    Attached Images Attached Images    
    Beth in AZ
    Innova 22' with Lightning Stitch and Pantovision
    Keep away from people who belittle your ambitions. Small people always do that, but the really great make you feel that you too can become great. Mark Twain

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