Friday, August 16, 2013

Lazy Girl Lunch Tote

It's back to school time! For the past four years, I have used a plethora of bags, boxes, and totes to take my lunch and snacks to work. The problem was, none of these were ever big enough to fit everything I wanted to take, so either they didn't zip and food tumbled out all over the parking lot, or I had to just eat a frozen lean cuisine :'(

So before starting another school year with an insufficient lunch carrier, I decided to take matters into my own hands and make my own lunch tote. There were some definite specifications:

- Must be BIG
- Easy to clean
- Outside pocket for water bottle / coffee / other drinkage
- Inside very spacious (not a lot of little pockets) for stuffing exorbitant amounts of food
- Cute :)

One thing I must make clear is that my new creation is called the "lazy girl lunch tote" for a reason - I never ever take the time to pack a pretty lunch. I just throw everything I need to make a lunch into the lunch box and put it all together when its time to eat. For example, I want a sandwich, so I throw in the remaining loaf of bread, a bag of meat, a bag of cheese, maybe some mayo or mustard. Do I take the time to put it all together in a nice little baggie before I leave - ha! Ain't nobody got time for that - it's the morning people! (and don't even say "just do it the night before" - that's sleep time people)

With that in mind, I took measurements of two large tupperware containers, a bottle of dressing and coffee creamer to find the ideal "finished measurement" of my lunch tote:

Width - 11", Height - 11", Depth - 7"

I based the design on this lunch box - very simple and a great size! It seemed so easy to make, why pay money for it?! (isn't that the sewists official motto? lol)

I used two fat quarters for the main body (front/back, base) and one fat quarter for the accent (sides, pockets, top).

 The tote is insulated with insul-brite and lined with waterproof PUL fabric.

There is a gathered pocket on the outside and a large side pocket on the inside for ice packs (both lined).

Inside out view
The top opens with a separating zipper.

The handles are just cotton twill ribbon I had leftover from this owl tote bag.

The edges are finished with a inverted french seam for stability AND a clean finish inside and out.

But best of all - LOOK HOW MUCH FITS IN IT! It's like the Mary Poppins bag of lunch boxes!

Yes, I promise everything in the picture above is in this bag - even the giant box of lettuce!
And it zips!
Just for comparison, here is my old lunch box:

Sorry salad, cheese, and creamer - no room for you! (And this is the most spacious of all my old lunchoxes!)
Hahahaha - its eating my old lunch box!
If you would like to MAKE THIS LUNCH TOTE, I would be more than happy to write a tutorial post to share. But of you're like - who would ever need such an enormous lunch bag - I'm responsible and fine with my current situation thank you - then I'll just keep it to myself ;)

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