How to Personalize Your Reusable Grocery Tote

comments (2) August 10th, 2012     

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JenniferStern Jennifer Stern, contributor
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The embroidered reusable tote from Whole Foods.
The front view of Whole Foods reusable tote.
Program the letters on your embroidery machine.
The embroidered reusable tote from Whole Foods.

The embroidered reusable tote from Whole Foods.

Photo: Jen Stern
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You can get these reusable grocery totes in almost every grocery store. I love them; not only do they cut down on the clutter in the cabinet under the sink, but they're also an easy way to participate in the recycle, reuse, and go green effort. My friend Gail had picked up some embroidery thread for me and delivered them to me in one of these totes from Whole Foods. I was going to return it when it occurred to me that it would be fun to add some embroidery to it first. Let me show you how easy it is to personalize a canvas tote bag. Before we get going, I do want to make one disclaimer: Some bags, specifically the ones you can get from LL Bean, are too heavy to embroider on a home embroidery machine. I know this from try them at your own discretion. (If you can figure out how to get good results, I would love to hear about it!)

What you'll need:
Embroidery machine and a 5-inch x 7-inch hoop (or larger if you have it)
Canvas tote bag
Embroidery lettering of your choice (either built-in fonts on your embroidery machine or use your software to create a custom lettering design)
Embroidery thread of your choice
Bobbin thread
Medium or heavy cutaway stabilizer
505 temporary adhesive spray
Small, sharp thread snips

First, decide what you want to say and either program it into your embroidery machine using the built-in fonts or use your embroidery software to create the lettering. I decided to keep it simple and use the letters that are built-in. If you are going to embroider a name or phrase that is more than a few letters, you can rotate the design vertically to fit more letters in a row. Thread the machine with the embroidery thread that you are going to use and fill a bobbin with bobbin thread.

Program the letters on your machine.   This is a good opportunity to try some of the built-in fonts that come with your embroidery machine.

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posted in: embroidery, tote, bag

Comments (2)

MeredithP writes: This is a great idea. Have you done any embroidery on the "polyester" mesh (or they look like colored pellon) type of bags that some stores offer? I guess a low density design would be OK, because it wouldn't "cut" the material as much.
Posted: 7:17 pm on February 22nd
kenandbarbie writes: You go girl!!!
Posted: 6:50 pm on July 31st
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