An AWESOME tote-orial

OK, now we’ve got THAT pun out of the way….

Hi, Greetings, Howdy!
I realize it’s been *a while* since I last posted, I actually have a ton of projects & how-tos photographed but haven’t gotten round to putting them together.

So, back to this awesome bag then…

I’ve seen loads of different takes on these T-shirt Totes and was ALWAYS meaning to make one (or 10!) so when The Kid was having a pre-Christmas clear out and this T-shirt (which, let’s be honest, I’ve had my eye on for some sort of make ever since it was purchased) found it’s way into the clothes recycling bag; I finally decided to give it a go.


Because, clearly, that’s what you do; days before Christmas; when you are stupidly unorganised and obviously don’t have a million and one other more important things to be doing….

So, how did I do it?


First, I gathered the necessary supplies.

For this easy DIY you will need:

1 T-shirt

That’s it!
If you want to seem really professional, add a ruler and ‘something’ to draw/mark with (chalk, pencil, disappearing ink pen…)

1. Turn T-shirt inside out (or outside in, if that’s how you roll)

2. Cut off sleeves (stage one of creating carry handles)


Cut off the sleeves, this will create carry handles.

3. Scoop around neck.
This creates the ‘opening’ of the bag. It’s up to you how neatly you do this: eyeball it, draw a rough curve, make a paper template….


I drew a curve from one shoulder to the centre, cut it then flipped it over and traced around the edge; so both sides matched. Kind of. If you squinted from a distance.

Next, we need to seal the bottom of the bag. Otherwise, it won’t hold anything and your stuff will just fall through. It wouldn’t be much of a bag at all!
There are a few different ways to do this, I used ‘The Knotted Fringe’ technique.

4. First you need to draw a line across near the bottom, about 3 inches is good.


5. Then we mark the thickness of our fringes, I ended up doing 1/2″.


I marked along the hem at half inch intervals, then repeated along the line I had drawn, before joining the marks together in straight lines.


To be honest, this step was probably unnecessary. You could probably get away with just the 1/2″ marks. Or ignore that step completely and just eyeball it as you cut.

6. As you’ve probably gathered, we’re now going to cut the fringes.


You can cut both layers together, or cut one side then line up the other.
I’d recommend the first option. It’s quicker, and less of a faff.

7. NOW we start knotting.


Tie your fringes together in pairs, one from the top and one from the bottom.
I double knotted, for extra security.

Work your way along from one side to the other, you soon get into a rhythm.
OK, you do start losing the will to live around the halfway mark but it’s gonna be worth it when you have an awesome new bag, right?


And that’s the knotting complete.

If you look closely, you’ll notice holes spaces between the knots; now we close them up.

8. Take an end from one knot and tie it to one from the neighbouring knot.

Repeat all the way along, until all the strips are tied to the neighbouring knots.


Again, I double-knotted as I went. (More about that at the end)

9. Turn your bag right-side out.




Fill your Awesome bag with Awesome stuff and congratulate yourself on your Awesome talents.

11. Make more. Hundreds of them. Raid everyone’s closet and steal their Tees.

WHY did I double knot, you ask?

Full disclosure: I sat in front of the TV, quickly knotted my pairs, repeated with the split pair knotting, turned my bag inside out, stuffed a cushion in to see how it looked ‘full’ ….and the bottom opened a bit.

So, I untied them all and re knotted, double knotting at each stage.

I have used my bag repeatedly since making it, both to transport some Christmas gifts and to carry my work uniform back and forth.
It has been through a wash cycle pretty much every week and has held fine.

I’d love to hear if YOU make one!
As always, thanks for reading!
The Crafty Lass x


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s