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

  1. #51
    Junior Member terry leffler's Avatar
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    I've used the boards they sell for mats for pictures. They have other good boards in the craft stores near the picture frames-can be cut to any size & you get a lot of mileage out of 1 board. Then cover with a sleeve, but you don't have to sew it closed - just make it longer & fold it in. Easier for washing!

  2. #52
    Super Member KathyKat's Avatar
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    I use the stiff craft interfacing, I think one brand is called Timtex. I've heard people recommend buying the stiff place mats at the dollar store but ours doesn't carry them.
    Kathleen, a lass with a bit of the Irish in her blood and a whole lot of Irish in her heart

  3. #53
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    I use 4" x 14" x 1/4" boards from Micheals. Usually on display with the balsa wood.
    Christine

  4. #54
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aurora View Post
    I stock up on plastic placemats from the Clearance Aisle at WalMart. I recently purchased about 30 for $.15 each. I also use them for templates. Heavier than template plastic and a lot cheaper.
    This is my choice also. You forgot how easy they are to cut.

  5. #55
    Senior Member pippi65's Avatar
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    I've used plastic canvas and I've used the plastic folders and made a sleeve. All good suggestions.
    Be kinder than necessary,everyone you meet is fighting some kind of battle.

  6. #56
    Super Member piepatch's Avatar
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    I use a heavy mat board. It comes in different weights, and I get it in the art/frame dept. at Hobby Lobby or JoAnns. I have also used plexiglas. I got it at Lowe's, and they cut it to size for me. I bought one pre cut size, and they allowed two free cuts from that. I make a fabric sleeve for both these products, and they hold up very well.

  7. #57
    Super Member lisalovesquilting's Avatar
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    Does anyone have trouble with things going under the sleeve? I did.

  8. #58
    Super Member mar32428's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ksdot417 View Post
    I make a fabric sleeve and insert a piece of foam core board and then sew it shut. It fits great in the corners and can be removed if you need to wash it. I've also used the plastic canvas.
    I have had wonderful luck with this method. Being able to remove it for washing is super. I can take the foam board out and just wash the sleeve. Had a problem with things sliding under it so use a spray glue when I put it in the bottom.
    I'm taking it all with me and if St Peter won't let me in, I'm commin' back.

  9. #59
    Senior Member RonieM's Avatar
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    You know those Bag-E-Bottoms that are super expensive, well I get the local glass shop to cut me plexiglass in the sizes I need for a fraction of the cost.

  10. #60
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    I use foam boards, I buy at the Dollar Store. You can cut several from one board. Plus, I save used rotary
    blades to cut them. I use 2 boards, taped together with duct tape for extra strong bottoms. I do cover
    them with a fabric sleeve. I've tried other suggestions and this is the cheapest way I have found.
    Hope this helps.

  11. #61
    Super Member Grandma58's Avatar
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    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.

  12. #62
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    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.

  13. #63
    Super Member Debbie B's Avatar
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    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.

  14. #64
    Junior Member Needle Up's Avatar
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    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.

  15. #65
    Senior Member mrsjdt's Avatar
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    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.

  16. #66
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    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...

  17. #67
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    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.

  18. #68
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    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.

  19. #69
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    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.

  20. #70
    Super Member soccertxi's Avatar
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    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
    www.bzyqltr.blogspot.com
    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

  21. #71
    Super Member Knitette's Avatar
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    I use those thin colour coded chopping boards - red for meat, green for vegetables etc. They're usually sold in packs of five in the catering section. Easy to cut and inexpensive too.
    Lang may yer lum reek. (I'm a knitter - hence - 'Knit-ette'. Confuses a lot of people!)

  22. #72
    Super Member GrannieAnnie's Avatar
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    I use a heavy iron on craft backing. I do 3 or so layers, cut just inside the seam line.
    Bad Spellers of the World
    U N T I E

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