There are lots of great tutorials for making tote bags. This one utilizes pillowcases so most of the seaming is already done and the sewing is mostly on the pockets. I included interior pockets so I can leave my purse in the car and just throw my phone, wallet, and keys in the bag so I'll only have to carry one bag. The exterior pockets easily accommodate magazines and since they extend around the entire bag they could also hold bricks of cheese or just about anything that isn't thick. Also, the handles are long enough to slip over the shoulder and the bag tucks under the arm. Roomy enough for multiple six packs of beer or back to school shopping at the mall.

This bag replaces 4-6 of the dreaded plastic white trash bags. Not only do plastic bags end up in landfills but also pollute oceans, killing marine life.

Step 1: Gather Materials

2 pillowcases, one for the bag and one for lining. I used standard size cases but any size will work.

Grograin ribbon (optional) I used a tad over 2 yards of 1 1/2" wide ribbon from my stash. If your pillowcase is plain you might want to embellish with a variety of ribbons, beads, rick rack, etc.

washable marking pen/pencil (I use soap slivers)

Rotary cutter and mat are useful but not necessary

You already have a sewing machine and thread, no?
Right, I just had to share the photo of the bag. It took me 4 hours to make it, and I made the handles a bit longer as I prefer to slig my bag over my shoulder. Thanks for the idea, I had fun making it!
<p>That's really cute!</p>
If you'd like to add some strength to the bottom of the bag for carrying slightly heavier items ( like books or canned goods) you can cut a piece of heavy cardboard, plastic or buckram slightly smaller than the length and width of the bag and either cover it with the scraps from the project or other scrap material. The &quot;bottom&quot; can be left in the bag lying upright until needed and simply flip it into place for that extra support.
I didn't have a sewing machine, so I did it by hand. I used hemming web to help with the seams, and sewed them together for extra strength. Thanks for the great idea!
AWESOME! i have made 2 already!!
I LOVE this tote. It's going to be my next sewing project. I even have extra pillow cases to use. Thanks for sharing.

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