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  • Londa

Canvas Tote To Teach Kids To Sew

Updated: Jun 1, 2022


Londa’s Sunroom Sewing Studio

These directions are based on a YouTube Video by Alanda Craft. I have added both lots of detail and a pocket for my sewing students. This is a great Tote for about any occasion including pockets across both bottom sides perfect for your phone/keys. ESPECIALLY....use these directions to teach a YOUNG ONE to sew!!!



54” Canvas ‘Outdoor’ Weight Fabric - your local chain fabric store has many to choose from, and they are often on SALE! Mine are from JoAnn Fabrics. I recommend that you NOT use a stripe, however - as doing so provides some additional challenges a beginning sewer should avoid.

Body - 1/2 yard

Straps - 1/3 yard

Machine Needle: Size 90 Denim/Sharp - Teach your student (AND yourself!) that a larger, sharp-pointed needle is needed to stitch through all these heavy layers of fabric. Stitch SLOWLY when going through many your machine a chance to accomplish each stitch!


1. For Tote Body - Straighten left edge. Cut one rectangle, 17” along the selvage and 35” tall.

2. For Pockets - Cut one 17” x 18” tall.

3. For Straps - Straighten left edge, then cut 2 strips, both 5” wide and the total width of the fabric, 54”.

Pieces to cut...


Upper Edges

1. Press each 16” edge (the top and the bottom edges) as follows:


Cardboard templates insure accurate pressing.

Align upper edge exactly along edge of a 2 1/4” template and press firmly as in photo below.

Align left edge of 1 3/4" template with first pressed line...

-Align 1 3/4” template along the edge just pressed to allow pressing of uppermost small edge as in photo at right below.

2. Stitch along the bottom edge of the pressed in upper hem and again 1/4" from the uppermost folded edges. Do this at both edges (tops) of the canvas tote Body.