Teacher Tote Bags! {free tutorial}


Yes, I’ve been busy. It’s that time of year when teacher gifts are ‘due,’ lol.

Just a quick question… all my kids are in elementary school and teacher gifts at the end of the year are pretty much just what you do around here. I really don’t mind, however, because I am so very grateful for certain teachers and school administrators anyway. No matter what I give them, it’s not enough!

So my question is: are you still giving teacher gifts in middle and high school? To all the teachers, or just your ‘favorites?’ I’m just curious.

Anywho… look at the teacher totes I made! When I asked my second grader what we should give his teacher, he said, ‘a bag with chocolate inside.’ So we’re half-way there.

Did you notice that my Bunny Applique blog post included a tote tutorial? Yes, it does, and that’s how I made these bags.

Of course, I left off the bunny applique for the teachers. And I added some interior pockets. The finished tote bag measures about 15” tall and 16” wide. It’s perfect for books and school supplies.

If you decide to make ‘teacher totes’ too… here’s the lowdown on how many you can make with a yard of fabric. The body of the tote requires thick fabric without stretch, like the Free Spirit Velveteen that I picked out on the right (both fabrics above are from the Innocent Crush line by Anna Maria Horner).

Since the velveteen was 54” wide, I was able to cut 3 tote bodies out of each yard. I had 2 yards so I cut out 6 totes. If your fabric is only 40-44” wide, you can only get 2 totes from a yard.

After I had those totes made I started sewing the handles. Each tote requires almost 1/4 yard of handle fabric (quilting cotton is fine) and I didn’t have enough coordinating fabric (the one on the left) for all 6 totes.

But then I noticed these gold and green scraps on my sewing table – aren’t they lovely? This fabric is in the new Haiku collection from Monaluna. Perfect. And I had just enough to finish my teacher totes.

The handles are sewn separately with cushy HeatnBond Fusible Fleece inside. So easy!

Well, that’s all I have for you today. Now go make some teacher totes using my Egg Hunt Bag Tutorial.

Happy Sewing!

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  1. Furbalsmom says:

    Love the bag, but how do you suggest we finish the top edge of the bag? I did not find top edge finishing instructions in either tutorial


  2. I still give them, lol. 1 in high school, 2 in middle school. With bus drivers, it comes out to 22 gifts! I make cheesecakes, both for Christmas and end of year. I am up to 17 today and just need 5 more by Friday. I had a teacher request my youngest because she’d had his sister and knew she’d get cheesecake twice plus a quilt for the baby she had in January, hahahaha

  3. Virginia Smith says:

    Great looking totes!

    Is there instructions for adding the Zipper? I have tried before but they never looked as great as yours.

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