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DIY Oversized Heart Tote Bag

Meghan Quinones |

Whether your hauling groceries, books, or a laptop, this DIY oversized heart tote bag is the perfect size!

It’s hard to find a bag that’s not only big enough to carry personal items, but that is also sturdy to withstand the weight.  This heavy canvas zipper tote bag is great!  It has a squared bottom making it roomy and the zipper is a gamechanger!  Many canvas tote bags do not have a zipper on top.  The included zipper gives the bag more securing so you don’t have to worry about any of your belongs spilling out if it accidentally topples over.  Another great feature of this heavy canvas zipper tote bag is the inner zippered pocket.  It gives you a place to safely store items like a wallet or cell phone!

To make this heavy canvas zipper tote bag into an eye-catching, one-of-a kind piece, I decided to customize it.  In my opinion you can never go wrong with a heart design.  Instead of placing a heart in the center of my bag, I put it a bit off-centered to add more interest.   This DIY oversized heart tote bag came together nicely with a bit of red paint.  I just hand drew a heart for a more organic, artistic look.  However, if you are not too confident in your drawing skills, you could always search for a heart template online and print it off to use.


  • Heavy Canvas Zipper Tote Bag
  • Red Fabric Paint (Fabric Medium)
  • Foam Paint Brush
  • Small Tipped Paint Brush
  • Pencil
  • Sheet of Paper or Cardboard


Step 1: Use your pencil to lightly sketch a heart shape.  For my heart, I wanted it to be a bit tilted and off-center.  I also wanted it to look like it was also hanging off of the bag.  When sketching the heart, you’ll want to make sure you do it very lightly.


Step 2: Shake up your red fabric paint.  If you can't find a shade of red you like, or if you have a ton of regular red acrylic paint, you can make your own fabric paint.  To do that, you’ll need use a fabric medium.  The process to make your own is fairly simple.  Just mix 1 part fabric medium with 2 parts acrylic paint.


Step 3: Before you get started, place a sheet of paper (or cardboard) inside of your bag.  This will help prevent paint from seeping through to the other side of your tote bag.  Then, dip your small paint brush into the red paint and use it to go over the lines you drew for your heart.  You’ll want to paint the line rather thick.  This will help create a crisp lie. 


Step 4: Next, add a generous amount of paint to your foam paint brush and begin adding color to the inside of the heart.  You may need to go over some spots a few times to make sure you have good coverage.  If you’re having a problem with an area, you can also use a pouncing motion with your foam brush to saturate the area with paint.


Step 5: Once you’ve added paint to the section you outlined, move your paper (or cardboard) to another section and go over the outline with the small paint brush again.  Then add color to the inside of the heart making sure you have good coverage.


Step 6:  Once you’ve added paint to your entire heart design, remove the paper insert and let the paint dry.  If you want, you can flip your bag over and repeat the above process to add a heart design on the other side of your tote bag.


After the paint on your bag has had time to dry, it’s time to use it!  As I mentioned before the size and quality of this heavy canvas zipper tote bag is great.  It is so versatile! How would you use it?


Note: If you used fabric paint (or made your own using fabric medium) if your tote gets dirty, just turn it inside out and toss it into your washing machine.  To prolong the life of your bag, smooth it out and let it dry.  If you decided to use a regular acrylic paint on your bag, it’s best to just wipe the dirty areas off with a damp rag.