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DIY Tote Bag


You can make easily a tote bag in your desired material. Choose a durable woven fabric, preferably cotton, in order to have a strong bag, which you can wash easily by just throwing it in the washing machine. The styling of the bag is easy. After you choose your main material you can then choose all auxiliary materials for the handles and any other decorative details you wish to have.

For this bag, I have chosen a material from my COLLECT4LIST inventory. An old  piece of a cotton tablecloth was selected for becoming my bag 🙂

Step by step presentation 🙂


x pair of scissors
x chalk or marker
x needle and thread or a sewing machine
x iron


x woven fabric and any additional materials you wish

Let’s DIY do it!


The pattern is a very simple one as it is a rectangular piece, which you will fold in half. That Fold Line (FD) will then form the bottom of your bag. Have a look at the diagram below, in order to understand better the initial shape of your pattern piece.

So fold it, in order to sew the sides

You could also mark a straight line to help you guiding your stitching line.




Back-stitch is a good stitch to use if you are doing it by hand. The back-stitch creates a strong seam in a straight line on the right side, while the stitches overlap on the wrong side.

Start from right to left and insert your needle into the fabric and come back out again, pulling the thread through. Re-insert your needle half a centimeter or so to the right of where your needle just came out, and come back out half a centimeter to the left of your first stitch. Continue like this, inserting your needle at the end of your last stitch to the right, and coming out one stitch ahead to your left.



The front and back view of the stitch

I am using a 5 thread overlocker for my stitching. It is a multi-task machine, which sews, cuts and finishes neatly the edges. all at once.


After you stitch both of your side seams, it is time to do a trick, in order to create a more spacious square bottom for your bag. Mark a small triangle on each side of your bag’s bottom and just stitch this line. You will be very happy with the outcome!


This is the result as it appears on the inside of your bag. You can also consider making a hard square bottom for your bag. Take any thick card paper, or similar material, measure the bottom of your bag, cut it according to measurements and wrap it in a piece o cloth. You can just stick it in and remove it when you wish to wash or simply toss your bag.


Fold once and then once again on the opening side of your bag, so that you will have a clean look





Then first you iron it and then you stitch it as if you were stitching a hemline. This stitch is flexible and could also be invisible on the right side of your bag.


Start preparing your handles. Surely, it is more practical when your handles are made from the same material, as the washing will be easier. However, I choose leather handles for my bag and mindfully decided that I will be washing it by hand and not in the washing machine.



Stitch your handles on your bag symmetrically to the center of the bag on both sides.



And few decorative features





Photography Giorgos Anastoulis

Good luck with your creation 🙂 Enjoy, xxx

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