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Review of Debbie Shore Build a Bag totes & occasion bags


A review of the Build a Bag Books by Debbie Shore

Debbie Shore has released two new bag making books in a new series of books with Search Press – the Build a Bag series.  The first two books focus on Tote Bags and Occasion bags, each book containing instructions for 15 projects as well as tips on making your own variations of these designs.  I hear that future books include backpacks and satchels. 

What differentiates these books from other bag making books is they both come with full size reusable plastic templates, so you can use them repeatedly without the wear and tear you normally get from paper patterns. They are thin plastic templates with slots for you to draw through to mark the shape of your bag, the flap or zip positioning. The templates are also transparent, so you can fussy cut your fabric. Each book has a handy plastic pocket inside the front cover to safely store your templates, so they don’t get bent or damaged.

Debbie Shore Build a Bag Series


Both books start with a guide to using the templates, to the tools and techniques you will need to make the bags (with step by step instructions and colour photos) and some tip tips from Debbie.

The bags themselves range in size and complexity and include clutch bags, large totes and handbags. Some of them do look quite similar with just a detail like the bag flap changed but there’s still several different styles and sizes contained in the books. 

How to sew tote bags and occasion bags


The projects teach you different bag making techniques including adding zips, making pockets, sewing different shaped bag flaps, making piping, bag closures, making quilted bags, adding details like bows or applique etc. In her bag making tips Debbie lets the reader know which bag is the easiest one to start with.

As with all her books the project instructions are easy to follow and have clear photos for every stage to help guide the reader.

These books are ideal for those new to bag making and will help readers grow their bag making skills and confidence as they work through the projects. The plastic templates are a brilliant idea and a great bonus. I look forward to seeing the next books in this series.

Find out more or order these books on the Search Press website: https://www.searchpress.com

Build a Bag Series of books by Debbie Shore - book review