There are few things as versatile as a classic tote. Stock it with towels and sunscreen for a beach day, carry it to your next farmers market, or even create the perfect carry-on for your next vacation. In today’s tutorial, I’ll be showing you how to make a classic tote with a printable easy tote bag pattern!
This particular tote comes in three different sizes to cater to whatever you may need. Want a bag for your next farmer’s market? I’ve got you covered. How about a new carry-all for your next girls trip? It’s right here. Perhaps you just need something to help get your books to and from places? Check.
What Makes This Easy Tote Bag Pattern Different
In creating this pattern, I wanted to make the most functional, easy-to-make, no-fuss design that would cater to whatever life throws at you. I also wanted to make it extra-simple to complete with several how-to resources just in case you’re just getting started and get stuck. Because let’s be honest- we’ve all had that moment when we’re yelling at the store-bought pattern instructions in frustrated confusion.
That’s why whenever I release a new printable pattern, I’ll always include a video tutorial so you can actually see how to put it together and follow along. If written instructions are your thing, my written tutorials (with loads of real photos) can be found as you scroll down this page as well.
Worst case scenario, if you’re really stuck you can always leave a comment below and I’ll be sure to get back to you asap and help out.
Last but not least, you can also print this pattern in the comfort of your own home from your standard, at-home printer. Just download your pattern HERE, print it out, tape the pages together, and cut out the size you’d like to make. Owning the digital download means you’ll never need to stress about losing the pattern or accidentally cutting the wrong size.
Let’s just keep it simple shall we?
- Basic Sewing Machine
- 3/4 Yard Printed Canvas (or other fabric you love)
- Two Pieces of 2 Inch Webbing Cut to 22″ in Length
- Seam Gauge
How To Assemble The Easy Tote Bag Pattern
To begin, get the printable pattern HERE for just $2.99.
Open the download and print the pdf document. Be sure to check the “Print Actual Size” and uncheck the “Fit To Page” button before printing to ensure it prints correctly.
I included a 4″ x 4″ measurement square on the first page of your tote bag pattern to print before printing the entire document. I recommend printing only the first page and measuring the 4″ x 4″ square to save paper before continuing to print the rest of the document.
Once you have all the sheets printed, lay them out on a flat surface. Each piece of printer paper will have a thin border around it so you know where to cut, lightly numbered pages, and even include small triangles to line up and tape into place. Here is a look at how your pattern will look when it’s assembled and ready to cut:
Decide which size tote bag you’d like to make and cut along the solid line. From here, cut your pattern pieces from the fabric of your choosing. This tote bag pattern works great for almost any kind of fabric including canvas, cotton, and even thicker fabrics like leather and vinyl. You can read my tips and tricks on how to sew canvas fabric HERE.
All of the seam allowances in this pattern are 1/2″ unless otherwise specified.
Lay one piece of your fabric out on a table with the “right side up.” Pin your webbing facing towards the bottom of the bag along the top seam of the bag as shown. If you haven’t marked your pattern pieces, you’ll know which side the top of the bag is because it will be the only straight line that does not have squares cut from the corners.
Use a wide-length zig-zag (or criss-cross) stitch along the entire top edge of your bag. This will help finish the seam when the bag is complete and prevent fraying.
Next, use a Seam Gauge to measure 1″ seam allowance and pin and iron into place Be sure to be use the correct setting for your fabric type! Pin and sew into place using a straight stitch at 1″ seam allowance.
Repeat on the other side until you have two seperate pattern pieces with attached handles. Flip your handles upright so when you’re looking at the right side of the bag so it looks like this:
Sew small squares in the 1″ seam allowance of the webbing to secure and strengthen the handle of the bag.
Next, lay both sides of your bag ontop of eachother with the right sides together. Pin and sew along the three long edges, making sure to avoid the small squares in the corners.
Fold the fabric in the bottom corners of the bag in the opposite direction and pin into place. This seam will create the finished edge that determines the bottom and the sides of the bag. Pin and sew into place using a standard straight stitch.
When you flip your bag inside out, you should have a beautifully crisp, finished edge that looks far more complicated that it was!
Now your bag is ready to be used and loved! Each of these totes takes about twenty minutes to complete and are so versatile, you’ll likely be making more as you need them!
I’ll be bringing several on the spring trips I have planned. You’ll love having such a versatile bag on hand! I hope you really loved this tutorial and download the printable pattern. As always, if you have any questions after reading the tutorial and watching the video, please don’t hesitate to reach out in the comments below! I really love hearing from you and always want to help out!
Check out my tips and tricks on sewing canvas fabric here.
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