A little less frantic…

I never really understood the need for totes until I started teaching children’s church my 4 year-old’s class.  It’s the perfect size for carrying around all those lesson plans, worksheets and a Bible.  Now  I’m hooked. 

For the upcoming craft show I embellished a couple of pre-made totes.  Before,

totes before

and after. 

totes after

Really not too diffiult with a little bit ‘o  Heat ‘N Bond Lite (link is to JoAnn’s, but it is cheaper at WalMart), but appliqueing an already-made bag can have it’s challenges (think purse contortionism).

tote closeup

At 3 totes for $5.50 at WalMart, this seemed like a better option to me than making them from scratch.  And now I have a few more items for the show and I feel a little less stressed.  :o) 

28 Responses to “A little less frantic…”


  1. 1 Janna October 23, 2008 at 12:14 pm

    Ohhh! These are so stinking cute! I may have to try my hand at some. These would be fun to make as Christmas gifts (especially for teachers).

  2. 2 Cathy October 23, 2008 at 12:15 pm

    Yeah, I wonder why I make totes when the premades are so cheap. My answer is always the love of creating a unique look. And motherhood has made totes essential for me. Your applique is cute, cute, cute!

  3. 3 chellie October 23, 2008 at 12:29 pm

    Cute!
    So is that just fabric you cut on in those shapes? Do you put something on the fabric edges to prevent fraying or just sew around the edge?

    Love it!

  4. 4 Sheila October 23, 2008 at 1:05 pm

    Really cute and what a great idea. I might just have to give them a try. I love the fabric you used and such a cute design.

  5. 5 Francesca October 23, 2008 at 2:07 pm

    Hi
    I’m new to your blog!
    These bags are soo cute!🙂

  6. 6 Jody October 23, 2008 at 2:24 pm

    Oh wow – this is such a great idea! Quick and easy presents for Christmas here I come!

  7. 7 patti October 23, 2008 at 3:55 pm

    Super cute. I think I can make this project since the bag’s already done for me.

  8. 8 tryingtraditional October 23, 2008 at 4:12 pm

    Oohhh, very simple, but pretty.

  9. 9 Lil' d October 23, 2008 at 5:23 pm

    I’ve got a ready-made tote that needs embellishing – after a disastorous attempt at image transfer… I’m off to look for heat and bond, but I’m not expecting it to look anywhere near as lovely as your sweet totes.

  10. 10 beki October 23, 2008 at 6:22 pm

    Oh yes, do take short cuts where you can!! Those totes are so cute😉

  11. 11 tinkerverve October 23, 2008 at 6:24 pm

    Very cute AND functional – Go WalMart! Have you ever noticed the fabric cutting gals there are a little ‘touchy’. I had one just such experience today to add to my many. They seem to be a little short on the JOY!

  12. 12 Janine October 23, 2008 at 6:46 pm

    What a great idea! They look fabulous. Applique is something that I want to try someday. It just seems a little scary.

  13. 13 meg October 23, 2008 at 8:45 pm

    Ha! I wasn’t much for totes, either . . . until we started teaching 4/5 year old church. Now they’re a must.🙂

  14. 14 Alkira Rose October 24, 2008 at 7:29 am

    OH MY! I am in love! (with the bags that is). You have done a superb job and transforming a few boring totes into 3 funky bags that women would die for! BIG thumbs up!

  15. 15 Connie October 24, 2008 at 11:07 am

    These tote are super cute!!

  16. 16 Elizabeth October 24, 2008 at 12:18 pm

    I never thought of dong applique on these totes! What a quick way to make some reusable grocery bags!

  17. 17 Anna October 24, 2008 at 2:50 pm

    I just found your blog a few weeks ago and love it. I have totally been stressing about a church bag lately. I knew I didn’t have the skills to make one all by myself (or at least, I didn’t have the guts to try it). This is the greatest idea and they are so dang cute!

  18. 18 Katrina October 25, 2008 at 8:43 am

    They’re real cute. Such a clever way to jazz up a tote using leftover fabric scraps.

  19. 19 Jen Borley October 25, 2008 at 10:06 am

    I love this! How simple & yet so spectacular!

  20. 20 Missy October 25, 2008 at 3:32 pm

    Oh, I love these!!! I have a ton of these totes (I was using them to paint on) and I also have a ton of scraps of fabric that I could use up!!!! Great idea – you are a genius!

  21. 21 Spare Ribbon October 25, 2008 at 4:52 pm

    That’s a neat way to dress up some boring totes laying around the house. It would also make a great gift for someone.

  22. 22 Rosaline October 26, 2008 at 7:22 am

    Such an amazing transformation. I’m presently making Halloween totes from my over flowing stash of Halloween fabrics. I lined the bags and added fluffy trim and beads.

  23. 23 CrazyLadyCrafts October 27, 2008 at 9:01 pm

    Oh this is wonderful! I have some bags from a market that I am going to embellish so they know i already own them, as I have always felt weird about bringing the bags back and them thinking I was stealing. I know, I am an odd duck! I will post my project when finished!

  24. 24 Cindi October 28, 2008 at 7:35 am

    Hey Linda! Love the totes. Our Walmarts are stopping selling fabrics and craft stuff. One already has and I hear the others are following! The Quilt Show pictures looked delicious. You have come such a long way since I first met you online. Can I say I knew you when? LOL, love you, Cindi

  25. 25 Beth October 29, 2008 at 9:23 pm

    Wow, those are great!!! I really love them.

  26. 26 celia November 3, 2008 at 11:59 am

    Hi! I just happened across your blog and I’m so impressed with your talents. Your crafts are so varied and wonderful. Excellent Work! Please, Please, Please consider posting some items for sale on Artfire.com!
    We are just getting started and I’m on the lookout for amazing craftsters like you! This is a personal invitation to join us… and there are no seller fees – Artfire is 100% FREE! Please take a moment and check us out.
    Blessings,
    Celia
    Artfire.com ~ Sell Without Fees ~ Create Without Limits ~ Buy Handmade!

  27. 27 sara's art house November 9, 2008 at 9:33 am

    Hi! I really LOVE those canvas bags from Wal- Mart that you appliqued leaves and a branch on. I want to make those for Christmas presents- CUTE!!!!! Would you mind if I put that picture on my blog? I would put a link to your blog.

  28. 28 Sara December 28, 2008 at 2:06 pm

    I would love to learn how to Appliqué my own motif fabric shapes onto quilts and such! how do you make the edges so clean and without fray? do you fold the edges under and sew?


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Craft Apple

An apple a day keeps the doctor away, right? Well, crafting is my apple. It's what I do to maintain my sanity while taking care of my family. I homeschool my three boys, ages 12, 13, and 14), am a quilter, a bagaholic, and a pattern designer.
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