How to Make an Apple-Print Tote Bag

comments (22) March 22nd, 2012     

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kaytet kayte terry, contributor
Love it! 94 users recommend
My apple tote accompanied me on a recent shopping trip to Dumbo and the Brooklyn Flea!
Look for nicely shaped apples that you think will make good prints.
Dab, dont paint, the ink onto the apples so you cant see any brushstrokes.
My apple tote accompanied me on a recent shopping trip to Dumbo and the Brooklyn Flea!

My apple tote accompanied me on a recent shopping trip to Dumbo and the Brooklyn Flea!

Photo: Kayte Terry
1 | 2 | 3 > View all

I don't know about you, but I am much more likely to remember to bring reusable totes to the grocery store when said totes are cute and fashionable. This tote bag is printed with real apples and embellished with a little bit of appliqué and bright fabric handles. Hang your new tote right by the front door, and I guarantee you will never ask for paper or plastic at the store again!

What you'll need:

  • Two or three apples with stems
  • Sharp knife
  • Cardboard
  • Plain canvas tote bag
  • Fabric ink
  • Sponge or spongebrush
  • Press cloth and iron
  • 1/4 yard cotton fabric
  • Small scrap of a contrasting cotton fabric
  • Small piece of fusible webbing
  • Fabric and paper scissors
  • Sewing machine and thread
  • Seam ripper

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How to print the tote:


Look for nicely shaped apples that you think will make good prints.

1. Cut an apple in half with a sharp knife. You will use the side with the stem attached.

2. Insert a piece of cardboard into the tote bag so that the ink doesn't bleed through.


Dab, don't paint, the ink onto the apple so you can't see any brushstrokes.

3. Brush the apple half with ink (don't forget the stem!), and firmly press the apple onto the bag as desired. Continue to make your pattern. If you want to change colors, you will need to use another apple.

4. When the ink is dry, place a press cloth over the bag and press to heat-set.

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Comments (22)

itsajoy writes:

toooo cute!!!
love it!
Posted: 7:04 pm on July 9th
GlassPeace writes: Oh my gosh I love it!
Posted: 1:28 am on April 30th
patricetaylor88 writes: This would be a great project to do with Liberty, my 8 year old niece.
Posted: 12:49 pm on March 25th
patricetaylor88 writes: This would be a great project to do with Liberty, my 8 year old niece.
Posted: 12:49 pm on March 25th
isnessofwhatis writes: this is AWESOME! I'm putting this on my must do list.
Posted: 12:56 am on July 16th
Menna writes: Super fun
Posted: 6:57 pm on May 19th
un_vagalume writes: I couldn't wait to do one on my own :P So beautiful idea!
Posted: 6:34 pm on April 15th
meganc writes: So cute. I want to do this with my daughters. It won't come out as neat and tidy, but they'll love doing it. Kayte, your tutorials are always fantastic.
Posted: 9:58 am on April 11th
scrappytime writes: This is such a great project! Fun and functional!
Posted: 6:32 pm on April 9th
sarahbcraw writes: This is so fun!
Posted: 1:33 pm on April 7th
erika_kern writes: So much fun! I love how it just screams spring. Oh, and you're completely making me miss Brooklyn. Brooklyn!
Posted: 11:18 pm on April 3rd
csheffield writes: Definitely can't wait to try this!
Posted: 7:19 pm on April 3rd
croqzine writes: Best use of apple prints ever! Love the addition of the applique leaves. Genius!
Posted: 5:52 pm on April 3rd
codyscreations writes: That is too cute!
Posted: 11:59 am on April 3rd
ien writes: cute!!!
Posted: 12:58 am on April 3rd
ien writes: cute!!!
Posted: 12:58 am on April 3rd
hemidemisemiquaver writes: Very, very cool! I was just in DUMBO the other day!
Posted: 2:51 pm on April 2nd
PetitGateau writes: Once again, you've come up with something I have to go home and make right away! : )
Posted: 2:19 pm on April 2nd
susanstars writes: oh, I love it!!
Posted: 1:34 pm on April 2nd
kaytet writes: thanks ladies!
Posted: 1:09 pm on April 2nd
LindaPermann writes: adorable!
Posted: 12:24 pm on April 2nd
Jen_W writes: This is absolutely fantastic!
Posted: 12:23 pm on April 2nd
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