It’s a cinch to give a plain tote bag a big dose of personality— just add stylish straps. Start with an easy-to-sew bag in any size you like, then add buckles or grommets. From there, the options for strap materials are endless—patterned ribbon, nylon rope, and supple leather are all fair game.
A single yard of fabric is all you need to sew the body of a simple tote bag. Follow these basic instructions, then customize your brand-new bag with buckles or grommets and your favorite strap material.
Cherry blossoms are famously short-lived, but on a sturdy satchel they can last long past the season. These motifs, sized from little to large, are easy to affix with a hot iron. Look for natural-fiber bags, such as cotton, which withstand heat better than synthetics.