Pepin Tote Sew-Along: Week 2


Hello First name / there,

Welcome to the second week of the Pepin Tote Sew-Along! I'm excited you're here!


Last time (Week 1), I put together a video on fabric selection which I hope you found helpful. Here's a link to that newsletter. We also got all the fabric cut out and the interfacing fused in place!


This week we're getting to the fun part, the sewing! The video is included below, but I did want to chat about some of the sewing basics you might need.


Needle & Thread

I get asked a lot about what type of thread and needle I use for bag making, it is an important part, right?! In my patterns I suggest a polyester thread and a size 14 or 16 denim or microtex needle. But here's some more details!

Image 1

My favorite type of polyester thread is Gutermann Mara 100, I usually pick mine up at (and most of the time I buy cones of basic neutral colors - cream, black, gray, etc.). I've used this thread for years and love it.


I have a healthy stash of sewing needles (thank you coupons!) that I picked up at my local big box sewing store. I use the Schmetz brand which I've found to be very reliable. I typically use a Denim size 14 or 16 needle. Now the size is important for a needle! The larger the number, the stronger the needle. Strength is the real workhorse we need in order to get through the layers of fabric/handles without your needle bending and breaking! I've also used Microtex (sharp) or even a Leather or Topstitching needle. For me, the Denim needle goes through leather handles no problem, but you should definitely experiment on some test scraps before using whatever needle/thread combination on your final bag. Also, here's a great chart with needle information.


The other item I use on almost every bag I make is this Bohin Chalk Pencil. I love because it creates a thin yet noticeable line on most fabric (not light colors, but you can pick up refills in other colors besides white). I also love that you can refill it! Although I think I've only really gone through one refill pack in years, so it really does last a long time! And it's like a mechanical pencil, so handy. Maybe add that to your holiday wish list if you don't have one already. :)


And with all that said, please use whatever works best for you! Same goes for anything I show here, after all, that's one of the parts that is so great about sewing.


Scroll down for the video for this week's sew-along. I've put timestamps in the video's description so if you only want/need to watch a certain part, click on those timestamp links. 


Lastly, if you haven't picked up your Pepin Tote pattern, click the button below.



Here's the video for Week 2 of the Pepin Tote sew-along! Click the image below to play the video.

Image 1

In the video we're covering making the front pocket, completing the exterior (including adding a snap to the front pocket if you wish), and basting on the handles (I show both webbing and leather handle examples).


After this week you should have the exterior complete with the handles attached. Yay!


Once again if you missed it last week, here's the sew-along schedule:

Week 1: October 30, fabric selection as well as cutting & fusing interfacing

Week 2: November 11 (today), make front pocket & exterior

Week 3: November 18, make the lining (we'll go over both the magnetic snap and recessed zipper options)

Week 4: November 25, finish your tote!


If you're on Instagram feel free to add your images to the hashtags:

 #PepinTote and #PepinToteSewAlong

Missed an email?


If you have a question regarding today's video feel free to reply to this email. 


See you next week,