Is your doll in need of the perfect summer accessory? Are you looking for a simple sewing project to practice your stitching skills, or to experiment with some new decorative embroidery? The tote bag is the perfect blank canvas for fun embellishments, and can really tie together any summertime look.
This post features a few great ways to make the perfect summer tote for your doll, from PDF sewing patterns, to a free tutorial for upcycling your own tote.
Everybody needs a go-to summer tote- perfect for a trip to the beach, the park, or the farmer's market. This pattern hack of the Sew Urban Reversible Hobo Bag creates an easy casual bag that is unlined and has no hardware, making it great for a beginner project or something you can whip up super quick! Be sure to click the image below to go to the full pattern hack post for this project.
The tie strap detail creates a fun and casual look, and the simple design of the bag means it can be made in a variety of fabrics, from quilting cotton to crochet yardage.
All the time we come across little bags when we're out shopping, from gift card holders to small dust bags for jewelry, and we can't help thinking- hey, this would make a great bag for a doll!
This quick and easy tutorial shows how we made a doll-sized tote bag from a Magnolia bag which had the right width but was too long for a doll bag. This basic concept can also be used to make a bag from scratch, just by cutting out similar sized rectangles and sewing the side and bottom seems first.
Start by deciding on the ideal measurements for your finished tote. We did this by comparing a tote we already had whose size we were happy with (this gift card holder from Whole Foods!).
Our ideal finished measurements were about 4-inches wide by 3-inches tall.
Once you have determined your measurements, cut horizontally across the top of the bag, making sure to add an extra 1/4-inch for the hem.
With the help of quilters tape (optional), press and hem the top of the bag all the way around.
Cut two pieces of trim to use as bag handles. Measure on your doll the appropriate strap length for a shoulder bag. We made our straps about 7-inches long.
Mark the ideal placement of the bag handle. Sew the strap to the wrong side of the bag by making an X with your stitches. Repeat with the second handle on the other side of the bag.
And your DIY upcycled tote bag is complete!
Looking for more bags to make? We have a few more tutorials for cute little bags. You can find the Quick & Easy Shoulder bag here on the Blog, and the cute variation with the rope strap (pictured above) is featured in Sewing With Cinnamon. The Circle Summer Tote tutorial can be found on our Youtube channel.
There are so many great purse and bag patterns on Pixie Faire, and any of them can be transformed into the perfect summer bag just by choosing the right fabrics and details. Be sure to check out the pattern collection for Bags and Purses For 18-inch Dolls to see all the patterns which might catch your eye and inspire you to make your doll the summer bag of her dreams!
Here are a few great patterns for summer bags:
We'd love to hear from you. Leave a comment and tell us -which summer bag do you want to make?
The Pixie Faire Team
I like all of them, but esp the bookbag.
CONGRATULATIONS, TO THE WINNER!!! STEPHANIE L ….LOL I guess I was asleep under a rock,as I just got the email about the bag and gift card??? lol I have made a few of the bags, as mentioned in the hack!!
I like the Leila Bag the best, but they are all nice!
i love them all .my little neice would love either one.
The round rope one is my fav!
There are so many great ones but I think the mesh bag and the boho are my favorites. Thank you for all your wonderful patterns!!
I like the circular tote. It’s elegant for a tote.
I love the circle summer tote. Perfect for carrying those items needed for a summer outing.
My favorite is the Circle Summer Tote. In the past I’ve looked and looked for this, many times featured tote pattern with no results. Didn’t realize it was a hack with a U-tube tutorial. Thanks for the pattern.
All the bags are so cute! I love accessories. I think I’d like to sew the Emma Tote bag next!
The sew urban bag. Thanks!
I have some of these patterns but haven’t made them yet. I need to get going!
I think the crochet look market bag from Boho Bag pattern is the cutest.
I think the crocheted bag is really cute and would be fun to make.
I make beach bags to match doll swimsuits & cover-ups. I use my own pattern, but I like the idea of repurposing a branded tote bag or jewelry pouch.
I’d like to make the sew urban mesh summer bag
Love belted dresses and jeans
I do not think we can go wrong with any of these, but my choice might be the hobo bag.
I think i would like to try the mesh carrying bag. I looks interesting!
I love them all but will make the circle summer tote first.
Love all the sewing patterns.
Doll Tag Clothing mesh bag would be the one for me.
I’d like to make the Leila Bag by Appletotes.
THEY ARE ALL GREAT, BUT I PREFER THE BEACH TOTE STRIPED CANVAS.
I like the magnolia bag.
the Leila and the summer urban bags are so cute , but I loved them all
I would really enjoy the Magnolia bag!
I love these wonderful pattern ideas for bags. our girls will love to go shopping with these.
I like the look of Clem, Emma and the Boho boutique set. I would definitely make Emma, but I’d love to learn more on using doll sized hardware for realistic purses!
I’d like to make a little cross body purse.
I will try the mesh bag. It looks cool.
I love the little peach colored bag!
All of the bags are great, I really like the Magnolia Bag, and the Leila bag is so eye-catching in those colors.
I love the quick and easy shoulder bag
I would like to make the Emma Tote.
I like all the totes. but the mesh bag is pretty sweet,
I’d make the mesh bag or the magnolia bag
I love the circle summer tote.
I like the crochet-look ~ but I also love the ideas for making an upcycled bag! Thanks!
I love the Magnolia bag. It’s so darling.
I love the little magnolia tote.
I plan to make the cross body bag for 2 reasons. First is because I can make a matching one for my daughter using the Sew Powerful purse pattern. Second because you can embellish it with embroidery, beads, fabric markers, photo printed on fabric or a fun print. My 14 year old daughter likes having matching accessories or clothes with her 4 American Girls dolls and this pattern meets that need.
I love all of them but I would love to try the Circle Tote. I love circle purses and have owned many of them over the years.
I prefer the Urban Tote as it has so many possibilities.
I always like the idea of upcycling items. But all the bags are lovely and can be made from outgrown clothing material. x
I want to try out the up-cycled tote. I think it may make a good gift container for doll shoes, a double present.
Love the the sew urban summer tote.
I like the mesh bag, and I would also like to make a pet carrier tote similar to the one we have for our dog (but the cat likes it too.) The circle purse is cute and retro trendy and I would like to start on that one also. Thanks!
I think the Circle Summer Tote is so cute.
I love all the tote bag ideas, but especially the instructions using the Magnolia one! This makes it easier for me to envision trying all sorts of ideas for dressing up (or going casual) with a tote bag!
I love the mesh bag. I think my girls would like the Miche Design bag.
I love Miche’s Clem bag. I have the pattern, but haven’t had time to make it yet. Hope to soon.
They’re all so darn cute, and I love them all. Can’t decide!
I would make the mess bag, it matches a summer bag my daughter likes to take to the beach.
I’m not sure which I like best. The mesh tote is really cute but for my doll the Miche Design might work best. .
I love the pastel striped bag. So beautiful!
I really like the summer urban totes.
Which bag? That is tough to say. One, th cloth bag, I see as a purse. The open weave bag I see as either a swimsuit tote, or a vegetable/fruit bag. Both very darling. The Magnolia hack..as cute and creative as it cn be!!! Gives me many ideas of what to do with some of the give-away bags I have!!! thanks!
I really like the Emma Tote Bag pattern. The details make it special.
I love the peachy pink tote! actually, I like both! I am thinking the solid for right now, as this darn virus precludes me from shopping at the fabric store and I have a gazillion tones of fabric I really could use up. LOL!
The Urban Summer Tote is adorable and has flexibility.
love them! excited to make a few….thanks!
Wow! I love them all…but if I were to choose just one it would probably be the Sew Urban Summer Tote bag. Accessories are so much fun; probably the most fun part of every outfit!
The mesh bag just screams summer, and looks super easy! Win-win!,
Gotta say, I am really loving the mesh tote.
I love the Emma totenberg bag as it is so versatile and goes with so many different items of clothing, from denim to lace and satan , it all works!!
I love the Clem bag! Would like to make it.
I love the mesh bag and all the cute accessories for the Magnolia bag:)
I love the idea of recycling, so reusing a magnolia bag to make a tote is right up my alley!
I so want to make the Urban Tote hack! I’ve got the perfect lacy fabric. It’ll be SOOOO cute!
I Love the upcycled tote bag and I can’t wait to find some that will work for that!
Urban Summer Tote hack with using crochet/lace type fabric looks so neat.
The Clem bag looks so elegant.
I would really like to make the Leila bag, the travel luggage set, the mesh totebag, just to name a few. Bags and purses to go with every outfit a doll can create!
I love them all but to chose just one it would be the Lelia bag. I can picture it in so many color combinations from my scalp stash😀
I like the hobo bag but they are all cute. I make different bags to go with different outfits.
nice project for my 2 Granddaughters
Love the Urban Summer Tote – very cool. Thank you so much!
I really like the mesh summer tote
Oh, they are all so cute, especially that Emma Tote from Bonjour Teaspoon. But since I’ve made that bag before, the tote I would want to do, was the canvas Magnolia Tote hack. It looks so cute and it’s a great way to upcycle an existing bag that wouldn’t get used otherwise. So Cute! I love this whole series!
I really like the Leila bag , they’re all so adorable and would complete any outfit very much.
I would like to make the Circle Summer Tote. It is adorable!
Just love the adorable things that can be made by recycling!
Not only is entry embedded it is well hidden,😖 Please make entry easier to find! All I can open is the comments!!!!
I love the most colorful bags for summer with sandals.
I really like the Leila bag although all of them are gorgeous!
I like the lace bag but they are all great bags.
I like the DIY Summer tote that was made from the Magnolia bag. I like the style of it best. Very cute! I’m curious where the Magnolia bag came from.
I like the idea of making the miniature upcycled tote. It’s adorable.
The lace. Maybe with lace “gloves” for Sunday School.
I would love to make the magnolia bag for my granddaughters, I think it would hold up better for play.
Much as the Mesh version of the tie tote calls my name, this hack of a gift card holder makes the Magnolia bag the real winner. This one can stand up to play as well as look good. I am afraid the mesh would pull out of the seam.
The mesh bag really says summer to me.
I like the little summer mesh tote
I like the mesh bag – works with the bathing suit I am making – thank you for having the contest – they are so fun
What a clever idea, I love it! Thanks for the opportunity and for everything you do!
The Leila bag says summer to me.
Thanks for the cute idea of the up cycled tote purse!!!
I love the Leila bag or the mesh book bag
July 08, 2022
Oh I love all of these bags! Choosing just one is waaaay too difficult!!! I really fell for the fabric you used, the lacy open material makes a perfect market bag for purchasing fruits and vegetables. A gal can never have too many bags!!! :)