DIY Nautical Inspired Altered Tote (A Tutorial)

Nautical Inspired Altered Tote DIY Tutorial via lilblueboo.com

I saw some large totes made from recycled canvas sails in Tahoe the last time I visited and wanted to make a similar nautical-inspired tote. I used a plain white tote as my starting point. If you don’t have one you can always make one from plain white canvas or even a canvas table cloth. I’ve got a simple pattern in the shop here and you would just leave off the handles.

Other materials:
Large “snap” curtain grommets (you can get these at Micheal’s or Joann’s)
3/4″ “by the yard” rope from the hardware store

Nautical Inspired Altered Tote DIY Tutorial via lilblueboo.com

First, I cut off the handles of the tote. Then I used the template from the grommets to cut the holes:

Nautical Inspired Altered Tote DIY Tutorial via lilblueboo.com

The grommets easily snap together:

Nautical Inspired Altered Tote DIY Tutorial via lilblueboo.com

The bag I used had a lululemon logo on it so I used a seam ripper to remove it:

Nautical Inspired Altered Tote DIY Tutorial via lilblueboo.com

The finished grommets:

Nautical Inspired Altered Tote DIY Tutorial via lilblueboo.com

I threaded the rope through all four grommets:

Nautical Inspired Altered Tote DIY Tutorial via lilblueboo.com

I used a lighter to fuse the two ends of the rope together. The flame melts both sides and I quickly pushed the ends together and held them until they cooled:

Nautical Inspired Altered Tote DIY Tutorial via lilblueboo.com

I used a piece of the old tote handles to secure the ends. It was a small rectangular piece and I used a glue gun to attach it around the seam.  A lighter melted any frayed ends:

Nautical Inspired Altered Tote DIY Tutorial via lilblueboo.com

Finished!

Nautical Inspired Altered Tote DIY Tutorial via lilblueboo.com

 

The canvas bag I used was waterproof……the kind used for reusable grocery bags.

A great tote for the beach or pool:

 

Want to add an image or a monogram? Check out this tutorial from last year when I made canvas totes for the entire family:

Easy painted monograms with freezer paper or as a silk screen. 2 DIY tutorials via lilblueboo.com

 

Easy painted monograms with freezer paper or as a silk screen. 2 DIY tutorials via lilblueboo.com

 

 

 

 

 

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Comments

  1. 1

    This looks fabulous, Ashley! I could imagine adding some kind of nautical knot, too! =)

  2. 2

    I love this! So easy, cute, and functional!

  3. 3

    Could you make this with a drop cloth? I think one side of the cloth is water-proof.

  4. 4

    Great idea. Bonus points for using fire. haa.

  5. 5
    Beth Ellen says:

    What are the approximate dimensions of the bag you used?

  6. 6

    I saw some bags like this in a store in Maine… for $125.00! I nearly choked on my lobster roll! I love this tutorial and the bags look great! Thank you.

  7. 7

    Very cute! I have the same scissors lol!

  8. 8
    Linda L says:

    Love the look of this bag! Looks easy too! Thanks AShley!

  9. 9

    I like the look of the giant grommets and the smaller rope. I’ve done similar handles on bags made from sail cloth, and had a heck of a time getting the rope through the grommets because they’re too close in size. I have to tell you, if you can find someone with an old sail, or a sailmaker with scraps, you are set for life.

    http://ogno.blogspot.com/search/label/sail%20cloth

  10. 10
    Christine says:

    I adore your version of this bag! Could you share where you got the bag from? I love the sheen of the waterproof fabric & how simple the bag is. So inspiring, I’d like to make one, thanks!

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