Introduction: Tote Bags Made From Feed Bags
These are feed bags I buy to feed my animals and recycle into shopping totes. They are a plastic weave and fairly sturdy. You need one bag to make one tote including handles. I've sprayed them down in the sink and they wash up great. You can easily hold a couple jugs of milk in them no problem. Heavy-duty, recycled, and reduce waste in our world; a great thing! Have fun!
Step 1: Square Up the Bottom of the Bag
Take a few inches off the bottom to square up the bag, the bags are never straight.
Step 2: Cut the Top
Cut 7 inches off the top. From that 7 inches cut two handles 3.5 inches. Cut those two pieces 20 inches (or longer if you want longer handles).
Step 3: Finish the Handles
Fold in half and run your fingers along the edge to "press" down. Sew open side using serger or sewing machine. Do the same for the other handle. Set handles aside.
Step 4: Sew the Bottom
Fully open the bag and use your fingers to press down the outside edges. Serge/sew the bottom. Turn bag inside out, wrong sides together.
Step 5: Sew the Bottom French Seam
With bag inside out, make sure the corners are pushed out and press the seam down. Sew close to the edge to enclose the bottom, a French seam. This makes the bottom tougher and less likely to split.
Step 6: Add the Handles
With bag still inside out turn down the top about 2 inches. I like to have the words on the front showing so make sure the fold is above the words if you have any, if not then don't worry about it. Place the handles 5 inches from each side. I use metal clothespins to keep the handles in place. Flip the bag over and place the 2nd handle matching up to the first side.
Step 7: Sew the Handles and Top of the Bag
Sew about 1/4" from the top backstitching at all FOUR handles all the way around removing the clips as you go. I then go back over all four handles 1/4" below the first stitching, I do not go all the way around again and I try to avoid any letters on the front of the bag.
Step 8: The Corners
Pull the corners out about 3 inches and sew straight across on both sides.
Step 9: Turn Bag Right Side Out
Turn bag right side out, snip all loose threads, and you're done!