Part 2 of the Large Tote Instructions: Adding the Ties

Part 1 of the totes instructions can be found at the post Large Totes: Illustrated Example.

This is part 2 of the Totes Instructions.  This post illustrates how to use neckties to sew the drawstrings and complete the large totes.

Here is a copy of the printed instructions.  Illustrated instructions follow.


Necktie Prep

  1. Silky ties work best, but knit ties do not work at all. Some kinds of cloth ties might work but must be sturdy, not have torn or worn patches, and match well with the other ties.  When in doubt, stick with silky types.  Watch out for novelty tie designs that might be inappropriate for this use.  (for example, ties that say “world’s greatest dad” might not be best for totes given to domestic violence victims)
  2. Sort ties into groups of 4 of similar color and/or design. Ties will be used in pairs with two pairs per tote.  Try to make sure that each pair is made of ties with similar width.
Sort ties into groups of 4 by color families
Within each group, pairs should be of similar width

3.Cut ties to be 35” long from tip of widest point.

35 inches from wide end

4. For each pair of ties, overlap the narrowest ends about 1” and zigzag around the overlap 2 times. Be sure both ties are facing the same way (up or down) before sewing!

Sewing pairs of ties together at thin ends.

5. Use XL safety pin to keep these pairs together and use rubber band to keep them together until they are ready to be used in a tote.

Bundling two pairs of ties which have been cut and sewn before using in a tote

Threading the Totes.

  1. Fasten the XL safety pin to the end of one of the tie strings. Thread the ties through the side opening of the tote and go all the way around so that both ends come out of the same hole.
Thread one end of a sewn pair of ties into one side opening in the tote.
Thread the ties all the way around until it comes back out the same hole.

2. Do the same with the other pair and the other side hole in the tote.

Do the same with the other side
Both sides threaded and ready for the ends to be sewn together

3. For each side, match the points of the ties with wrong sides together. You can see here why ties of similar width work best.


4. Sew the tie points together using the following pattern. Start high enough from the point to ensure the back of the ties do not have loose pieces that will flap in the breeze.  Usually this is roughly  6”-7.5” back from the point.



Finishing touches:  Add a card in the pocket of each tote.






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