Sewing Tutorial: Reversible Shopping Bags

Sewing Tutorial: How to make a set of two large, sturdy, reusable, reversible shopping tote bags | The Chilly DogParenting has it's ups and downs. The long term goal is to raise your children to be responsible, caring, productive members of society through love and discipline. Of course, it's also important to model good behaviors.

I was recently encouraged that I am achieving my goal when my teenager asked me to make her some shopping bags, similar to the ones I have handy in the trunk of my car. That way she wouldn't have to use disposable, plastic shopping bags every time she goes to the store. Way to be good to Mother Earth. I'm so proud!

So, I created these reusable, reversible bags for her. I love this set because they are large and sturdy. You can actually fit two gallons of milk into a single bag. When they get dirty, just toss them in the machine to wash and dry.


  • 1 1/2 yds of 44"wide cotton fabric
  • 1 1/2 yds of 44"wide cotton fabric in a coordinating color/pattern
  • disappearing fabric marker
  • sewing supplies
  • A printable version of this Large Reversible Shopping Bag tutorial is available in my pattern shop


Before you get started, wash and dry your fabric.

Cut four 20 inch squares from each pieces of fabric.

Cut two 6 x 20 inch rectangles from each piece of fabric.

This is enough fabric to make two shopping bags.
I'll show you how to make one shopping bag. Then, repeat the process with your second set of fabric pieces.

Place the 20 inch squares of bag fabric, right sides together, and pin.

Place the 20 inch squares of lining fabric, right sides together, and pin.

Stitch around three sides of each with a half inch seam allowance.
Press the side seams open.
This next part is a little tricky. Starting in the bottom corner of either the outside or lining, fold the side seam to the bottom seam of the bag, right sides together.
Make sure that the two seams are aligned. The side seam is shown and the bottom seam is directly under it.
Next, place a ruler or grid so that there is 3 1/2 inches between the corner and the ruler edge that's perpendicular to the seam.
Use a disappearing fabric pen to draw a line along the edge of the ruler.
Pin along the line. Then stitch along the line.
Remove the pins and cut off the corner 1/2 inch from your stitching.

Repeat the process of folding the side seam to the bottom seam, right sides together, with the other corners of the outer and lining fabrics. Stitch and trim off the corners.
This process creates the rectangular bag bottom.
Next, you'll make the straps for your bag from the 6 x 20 inch rectangles.

Place one of the straps, face down on your ironing board.
Fold it in half lengthwise, wrong sides together, and press to create a center line. Open up the fabric.
Fold one edge to the center line and press.
Fold the other edge to the center line and press.
Fold the piece in half lengthwise and re-press the center line.
Stitch 1/8 inch from the edge along both long edges of the strap. Repeat with the other strap.
Fold the top of each of the bag pieces over one inch and press around the bag opening.

Turn one of the bag the outer bag  right side out.
Next, you'll place the straps. Use your disappearing fabric marker to mark six inches from the side seams on the outside of the bag.
Align the outer edge of the straps along the marks. The ends of the strap should go one inch into the bag. Pin.

Place the second strap on the other side of the bag the same way.
Insert the lining so that the wrong side of the lining and the wrong side of the bag are together.

Pin around the top of the bag.
I stitched around the top of the bag twice. Once 1/8 inch from the edge and once 1/2 inch from the edge.

You could also use some sort of zig zag or decorative stitch if you want.

Keep your bags handy so you can use them whenever you go to the store. Mine are in the trunk of my car and I can easily fit a week's worth of groceries into six of these roomy totes. That's much better than the 12-15 plastic bags that I used to need for each shopping trip. And now I can send my kiddo to the store to do some shopping for me and she can use her new bags. Life is good!

Sewing Tutorial: How to make a set of two large, sturdy, reusable, reversible shopping tote bags | The Chilly Dog

Sewing Tutorial: How to make a set of two large, sturdy, reusable, reversible shopping tote bags

1 Sock 2 Sock,6,4th Ridge Pocket Scarf,5,announcements,35,Azalea Socks,6,bags and purses,11,Beekeeper Socks,5,Best Worsted Socks,7,bind off,17,Birch Grove Socks,5,Bon Voyage Shawl,8,Burst into Bloom Scarf,5,Butterfly Kisses KAL,9,cables,8,Caretaker Socks,6,cast on,30,Cereus Sweater,8,Clover,3,colorwork,19,Crab Walk Socks,6,crafter thoughts,8,crafts,12,crochet,30,Cubicle Socks Trio,2,decreasing,9,embellishments,4,entrelac,6,essential knitting skills,68,Ewe Ewe Yarns,19,fabric,17,Feeling Loopy Socks,5,finishing techniques,20,fixing mistakes,6,Free Climber Socks,7,gauge,4,Grand Staircase Socks,6,holidays,12,increasing,19,It's All Right MKAL,5,KAL,28,knit,269,Knit Inc Sampler Squares,8,Knit Knot Bag,6,knit wit,9,knitting curiosities,20,Line Drawing Socks KAL,5,Little Birds Phone Pocket,5,Makers' Mercantile,36,Ohmö Shawl,4,Oink Pigments,13,pattern shop,204,patterns,72,picking up stitches,7,Ready Set Go Socks,12,ribbing,11,Riptide Socks,6,Secret Admirer Socks,8,sewing,24,short rows,18,Skacel,178,Slipstream Cardigan,7,socks,119,Solacer Wrap MKAL,3,Spindler Socks,6,stitch charts,7,stitch patterns,10,styles and methods,6,Sundog Socks,7,sweaters and shawls,41,Switchback Socks,5,terminology,8,tips,33,Toe-rific Fingering Socks,1,tutorial,236,twisted stitches,7,Waffle Cookie Socks,5,Wallflower Sweater,9,Whale Done Socks KAL,8,working in the round,32,yarn and fiber,20,YouTube,199,
The Chilly Dog: Sewing Tutorial: Reversible Shopping Bags
Sewing Tutorial: Reversible Shopping Bags
Sewing Tutorial: Reversible Shopping Bags - How to make a set of two large, sturdy, reusable, shopping tote bags.
The Chilly Dog
Loaded All Posts Not found any posts VIEW ALL Readmore Reply Cancel reply Delete By Home PAGES POSTS View All RECOMMENDED FOR YOU LABEL ARCHIVE SEARCH ALL POSTS Not found any post match with your request Back Home Sunday Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat January February March April May June July August September October November December Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec just now 1 minute ago $$1$$ minutes ago 1 hour ago $$1$$ hours ago Yesterday $$1$$ days ago $$1$$ weeks ago more than 5 weeks ago Followers Follow THIS PREMIUM CONTENT IS LOCKED STEP 1: Share to a social network STEP 2: Click the link on your social network Copy All Code Select All Code All codes were copied to your clipboard Can not copy the codes / texts, please press [CTRL]+[C] (or CMD+C with Mac) to copy Table of Content