Free Patterns

13 Free Tote Bag Patterns You Can Sew Up Today

13 Free Tote Bag Patterns You Can Sew Up Today

Sewing up a tote bag is a quick and easy project that’s great for the beginner but also a fun project that even the advanced of sewists like to come back to again and again. These free tote bag patterns are for the beginner to the advanced beginner but can be a great project for anyone.

You can use these tote bag patterns to sew up a tote that you can use at the library, grocery store, farmer’s market, pool, school, the office, and really just about anywhere. You really can’t have enough tote bags.

There’s a wide variety of free tote bag patterns here that include simple bags that take only 20 minutes to sew up, bags that have a lining, totes with tons of pockets, bags with snaps or zippers, totes that feature piping, and more. I’ve suggested some fun changes if you’d like to make the tote your own and challenge yourself a bit.

Easy Pocket Tote Bag

A tote bag handing on a doorknob

@ Sugar Bee Crafts

This free pocket tote bag pattern from Sugar Bee Crafts features a large pocket on the side, boxed corners on the bottom of the bag to give it some depth, solid straps, and a cute detail of piping on the top of the bag and the top of the pocket.

The pattern uses two coordinating fabrics, fabric for the straps, the optional piping, and fusible fleece to keep it sturdy. This is perfect for a library tote bag and it even looks polished enough to use as a summer purse.

Sewing Level: Beginner

Change It Up: Leave off piping, Use a third coordinating fabric for lining, Add another pocket to the other side of tote

Tote Bag With Pockets

A 6-pocket tote bag made out of floral fabric

@ Better Homes and Gardens

If you’re like me, you can’t get enough pockets in your bags. This free Six-Pocket Tote Bag pattern from Better Homes and Gardens has three pockets on each side of the exterior. Two contrasting exterior fabrics and a strap give it a sleek yet fun look.

Despite the look of the bag, this is a simple bag to put together with really just a few steps

Sewing Level: Beginner

Change It Up: Add magnetic snaps to pockets, Use two contrasting fabrics instead of three

20-Minute Tote Pattern

Four different fabric totes

@ Purl Soho

Here’s a free tote pattern from Purl Soho called the 20-Minute Tote. With just 1/2 yard of fabric and some cotton webbing, you’ll be able to sew one up in just 20 minutes.

These are so easy to sew up, consider using them as reusable gift bags for the holidays or birthdays. If you have a little more time, check out their 40-minute tote tutorial which adds a lining and boxed corners.

Sewing Level: Beginner

Change It Up: Make Your Own Straps, Add a Lining

Basket Tote Pattern

A floral tote sitting on a table

@ Sew Can She

If you’re looking for something more than your average everyday tote, this Basket Tote sewing pattern from Sew Can She is a great free tote bag pattern for you to try. The handles are the perfect length, making this a great bag to fit over your shoulder or carry as a tote.

The handles are the perfect length, making this a great bag to fit over your shoulder or carry as a tote. Three panels make up the body of this roomy tote with piping details to give it a professional look. There are directions on how to add a magnetic snap or a zipper for closure.

Sewing Level: Advanced Beginner

Change It Up: Leave unquilted, Make faux leather handles

Dish Towel Tote Bag Pattern

Two children with totes made from dish towels

@ Anna Marie Horner

Anna Marie Horner has a great tutorial for a Dish Towel Tote Bag that you can make up with dish towels you already have or ones you can pick up at the thrift store or find on clearance.

Just use two dish towels and follow the few steps it takes to make some handles and box the corners. You’ll be ready to go in no time.

Sewing Level: Beginner

Change It Up: Use fabric instead of dish towels, Add a false bottom

Foldaway Market Tote

A woman holding a tote bag

@ Me, You, and Magoo

This Foldaway Market Tote from Me, You, and Magoo folds up in a small square, making it perfect to stick in your purse for your next trip to farmer’s market or the grocery store.

From one piece of fabric, you’ll cut just six pieces to make the body, sides, and small pocket on the outside.

Sewing Level: Beginner

Change It Up: Make pocket out of contrasting fabric, Make larger or smaller

Leather Bottom Tote Pattern

A chevron and leather tote bag

@ See Kate Sew

Take your sewing to the next level with this Leather Bottom Tote pattern from See Kate Sew. A leather (or faux leather) bottom upgrades this tote to handbag status but still looks casual enough for everyday use.

Zipper tabs, a boxed bottom, and a full lining really elevates the look.

Sewing Level: Advanced Beginner

Change It Up: Add interfacing to exterior fabric, Insert magnetic snap instead of zipper

Lined Canvas Tote Pattern

A blue and white canvas tote by a plant

@ The Inspired Wren

This free tote pattern from The Inspired Wren will get you a fully lined canvas fabric tote with outside pockets and boxed corners.

This heavy-duty tote can be used just about anywhere and the sturdy bottom will make sure all your belongings are safe.

Sewing Level: Beginner

Change It Up: Use cotton fabric instead of canvas, Add a zippered pocket to inside of tote

Simple Summer Beach Tote Bag

A beach tote with ropes for handles

@ The Crafting Chicks

Here’s a summer tote bag pattern from The Crafting Chicks that would be excellent to take to the beach, the pool, a picnic, or anywhere your summertime adventures may take you.

This bag features a roomy lined interior along with a rope handle attached by grommets.

Sewing Level: Beginner

Change It Up: Use handles made from fabric, Add a slip pocket to the inside

Quilted Tote Bag

A quilted tote hanging from a hook

@ Moda Bake Shop

Moda Bake Shop has a free tote bag pattern called the Hushabye Tote Bag that even comes with a pattern for a matching quilt. What a great idea for a gift!

The highlight of this bag is the quilted outside pockets made from a jelly roll, along with added interfacing to make it a sturdy bag you can use for almost anything. Boxed corners and an interior pocket complete this lovely tote.

Sewing Level: Advanced Beginner

Change It Up: Leave pockets unquilted, Add piping

Easy Tote Bag Pattern

A gray and yellow tote

@ Diary of a Quilter

It doesn’t get much easier than this! This Easy Tote Bag pattern from Diary of a Quilter uses one fat quarter plus some fabric scraps for the handle. You even have enough fabric for a lining.

This little tote bag is perfect for the library or running errands. Kids love them too!

Sewing Level: Beginner

Change It Up: Use ribbon or webbing for handles, Add a felt flower embellishment

T-Shirt Tote Bag Pattern

A tote bag made from a tie-dye tshirt

@ Craftaholic Anonymous

Consider setting aside that sewing machine to make this No Sew T-Shirt Tote from Craftaholics Anonymous. Grab and an old t-shirt and some scissors and that’s all you need to make this cute bag. Ten to fifteen minutes later and you’re all ready to go.

This would be a great project for kids as well, and a wonderful way to use favorite t-shirts that they’ve outgrown.

Sewing Level: Beginner

Change It Up: Trim bottom fringe for a cleaner look, Use your sewing machine to stitch the bottom

Reversible Tote Bag

A reversible tote bag

@ Very Purple Person

Here’s a tote bag that’s going to give you two different looks because it’s completely reversible. Very Purple Person has made this Reversible Tote bag that just takes two different fabrics, each cut into two pieces.

To make sure this comes out nicely pay attention to your bobbin thread so you don’t get any thread bird nests.

Sewing Level: Beginner

Change It Up: Add box corners, Add pockets on each side

Next article Canvas Fabric: A Great Choice for Sewing Projects

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