You can make a tote bag in literal minutes with just your sewing machine and a t-shirt. This Easy Sew T-shirt Tote bag is one of our favorite quick crafts. You can use any t-shirt, decorate, color and design the back however you’d like. And, it only takes about 10 minutes to make (minus the decorating). Create big bags from big t-shirts or make small bags from small t-shirts.
Easy Sew T-shirt Tote Bag
To make your own tote bags using tshirts, you can use old, recycled t-shirts or buy shirts brand new. The shirts can be any kind of material, they don’t have to be strictly cotton. If you don’t have a sewing machine, that’s ok too. Just a straight stitch with needle and thread will do.
- Sewing machine or needle and thread.
Sewing a t-shirt tote bag
- Sew the bag as needed. Cut the straps. Sew the bottom closed. You can either sew on the outside or fold inside out and stitch the bottom. I chose to fold inside out and stitch 3 lines for a reinforced bottom. My kids seem to think they can haul bowling ball weight in all bags.. so more reinforcement is always good.
- Optionally, add a pocket inside the bag that you can also use as the storage case for the bag (HANDY!). It’s best to sew this into the edge stitching for a clean look to your bag.
- Sew edges for a finished look or leave as is. I created a two layered finished edge. Fold outside, sew, then fold outside again and stitch in place. This creates kind of a trimmed edge on the outside of the bag.
- Finish off the bag with any extra embellishments you’d like. I created a bit of iron-on bling with my Cricut that I’ll share with you another day.
Read my tie-dye summer tote bag tutorial to find how to make this fun tie-dye t-shirt tote bag design.