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Craftastic Tuesday: Homemade Fabric Tote Tutorial

I've been working to organize our bedroom closet. I love these fabric totes. But they can get a bit pricey. So I thought, why not make my own.

First, you'll need fabric and some cardboard. I had some nice twill weave fabric that is sturdy and a nice box.

Decide how big you want your box. Mine is 11x14. Cut two pieces of cardboard for each size.

Cut 2 long strips of fabric. Add all four of your sizes together. (11+11+14+14= 50inches)

Measure and mark at each corner on your fabric and then sew your two pieces together at each of the corners from top to bottom.

Your open ends should be sewn together and then zig zag or serge your edges.

You'll need some bias tape to finish your edges. I made my own, but you can buy yours.

If you make your own, iron it so your two edges meet in the middle.

Now cut a bottom piece for your tote. Again, 11x14.

Pin your bottom to your four sides. Pay special attention to your corners. Then sew, make sure to pivot at your corners.

It should look like this.

Now pin you bias tape to your bottom raw edges. Like above. And sew on.

Should look something like this.

Now you're ready to put your cardboard into your sides.

Once you've done that, pin the rest of your bias tape around the top of your tote and sew.

You'll need one more piece of cardboard that is 11x14 for inside your tote.

You'll also need two pieces of fabric to cover this cardboard. Sew them together leaving one end open.

Put your cardboard inside and sew your opening closed.

Finally, make a handle with your extra fabric or ribbon. Voila, you are done!! It was cheap and pretty easy. Plus it is the exact size that I want.


  1. Brilliant..you did a great job!

  2. Great tutorial! Thanks for linking @Creative Itch's 'Sew Cute Tuesday'!

  3. Thanks so much for posting this. I had been wondering if I could just use cardboard instead of buying the heavy duty (and expensive) interfacing. Thanks for sharing!!!


  4. Looks great! I've been meaning to do a similar project for a while now... good inspiration right here!

  5. Very cool - great job!

  6. Hey there! I know this is an old post, but I came across it and would love to do this. I was wondering how it held up?

  7. Wherelovemeetslife,
    It has held up really well. But it is just holding pjs and tops. I also made some for holding toys for my son using really heavy interfacing instead of cardboard and those have been great. Check it out here:

  8. That is awesome!!! Thank you so much for sharing instructions on how to make this! :)

  9. So I tried to do this, and I pretty much had an impossible time with sewing on the bias tape. The cardboard kept pushing the box around in my sewing machine, and there were places where I couldn't even get the edge under the needle. I especially was not able to sew the precise line needed to make bias tape look ok. Any tips? I've already got fabric cut to make a few more bins! Hoping I can make this work

    1. You might try to cut your cardboard a little smaller than your pockets. That could help. Maybe baste your raw edges closed first and then sew your bias tape. It's always a little tricky sewing with stiff materials.


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