This DIY T-Shirt tote is easy peasy to make with the awesome template from Nancy’s Notions and a sewing machine. I think it is the perfect teacher gift for teachers who have been at it for many years in a row and already have all the mugs and apple things they can handle. It is also great for special teachers like band directors and drama teachers. With performances and events having special t-shirts created as a part of them, collections can grow big. I know we have at least fifty school t-shirts around here between our four kiddos. This post is sponsored by Nancy’s Notions but the ideas and opinions are my own.
To get started, you will need the following supplies and materials:
- T-Shirt (Can use multiple and quilt together)
- T Shirt Transformation Ruler
- Extra Fabric For Inside
- Trim for Handles (Can Use Ribbon)
- Sewing Machine
- Scissors (My favorite sewing scissors are Bordeaux Shears.)
- Rotary Cutter
- Cutting Mat (at least 18 x 24 inches)
Before you start, cut your shirt. Do this by cutting through a sleeve and then through the neck on both sizes. This will allow you to open the shirt and make full use of the fabric space.
The first step is to CAREFULLY cut your t-shirt using the transformation ruler. This tool makes it soooooo much easier than trying to do it with scissors alone. Hold the ruler down over a pressed t-shirt and move it around until you get the square you want. There are several sizes you can create with this tool but for a tote bag, I recommend the outline of it.
Cut a square from the front and the back of the t-shirt and also two matching size squares from interfacing.
Iron the front and back piece to the interfacing. I sewed a little pocket from extra t-shirt material to the back so there would be a quick place to put a cell phone (or clarinet reeds!).
Cut two matching size squares from fabric for the inside of your tote. Sew them to the other sides of the interfaced t-shirt squares across the TOP only. Place your front and back together with the inside of the bags on the outside. Pin in your handles on the edges. You can do a single or a double ribbon handle. I did a double to make it a little stronger.
Sew around the three sides and over the ribbon inserts. I sewed over the ribbon several times. Trim around the edges and flip your bag right-side out.
And I just love the back with the pocket.