Beautiful Handmade Tote Bags


School starts here next week, which means that I have been doing a little back to school shopping. One of the rules at my daughter’s school is that kids in grades K through 3 have to use tote bags instead of backpacks – to save space. We added a tote bag to our list as we headed out over the weekend to pick up supplies. I checked thrift stores and found nothing that would work. And all the big box stores have are backpacks. We found one tote bag at Target that would’ve worked but it was $25 and made cheaply in China. I knew I could do better even though I have never before made anything of the sort. The number of sewing projects I have done is more than one and less than 10.

Tote bags

I raided my stash of fabric that was given to me earlier this year when a relative wasn’t going to do a project she had planned. Went online and found some tutorials to get the basic idea of what I should be doing. I ended up loving this Easy Tote Bag Tutorial and followed that with some modifications for my less than perfectionist self. I also loved this How To Make a Simple Reversible Tote Bag.


I made one for my daughter (the yellow one above) and had so much fun with it and found it simple enough, that I made one for me too (the blue one above). I have all but the straps done on another one for her just because. And I made myself this burlap one as well.

yellow tote bag

I may or may not have pranced around the house showing off my matching straps and lining to anyone who would listen. The dogs were most interested.

tote bag for school

The whole process was so fun for me – to learn something new, enjoy doing it even though I came across a few snags. Thank goodness for the internet to pull me through with tutorials and support when I need it. And my daughter is over the moon excited that I made her a bag for school. There are few better feelings than when she tells me that she loves the things I make her way more than anything she could find at a store.

Total cost for 4 tote bags? $0.

Leave A Reply