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DIY Reading is Fun Notebook Tote Bag

Meghan Quinones |

This DIY reading is fun notebook tote bag is the perfect carryall for library books and so much more!

When it comes to trips to the library, it’s hard to leave with just a few books.  My family usually leaves with no less than 12! Juggling this many books at one time can be quite the task.  So, to help make adventures in book collecting more enjoyable, I thought it would be fun to create a tote bag that not only looks like a page out of a notebook, but also states what my family and I really think about reading...reading is fun!  With this tote, I can easily peruse all of the bookshelves at the library looking at the newest and most loved books, while keeping my hands free to take a look inside. I can then just plop our selected books right into my adorable DIY tote bag and be on my way!

This project is great for beginners since it requires only a few basic supplies to get started.  Most of the items needed can be found at a local craft store.  It would also be a great craft for summer camp, or anyone looking to occupy their kiddoes' time that doesn’t include an electronic device! 

Check out the full tutorial below to see how you can easily create you very own DIY reading is fun notebook tote bag!




Step 1: Lay your tote bag down and use your pencil to make a dot 2” from the edge of the tote and about 1” down from the top.  Then, place another dot 1” up from the bottom of the tote and 2” in from the left side.


Step 2: Align your ruler with the top dot you created and the bottom dot.  Create a line with your red fabric marker.  Go over the line a few times to make it darker.  Move your ruler down to finish the red line.


Step 3: Starting an inch from the top of the bag, add a dot with your pencil.  Continue adding 1” marks down the entire bag, stopping when you get 1” from the bottom of the bag.


Step 4: Grab your blue marker and begin adding horizonal lines across the tote bag.  You’ll start adding a line ¾" away from the left side of the bag.  Go over the lines a few times for a darker line.  Move your ruler to the right to continue adding the line all of the way across the bag.  Stop adding blue lines once you get to the bottom of the red line on the left side.

Step 5: Use a black fabric marker to add a circle to the top line.  Go over the circle a few times to make it darker.  Add another circle half way down the bag and one at the bottom.  Again, you’ll go over it a few times to make it darker.


Step 6: Decide what message you would like on your bag.  Since this tote bag is a large sheet of paper, you can customize it however you would like.  You could turn this bag into a gift for a teacher by adding his/her name.  You could also add a favorite quote.  Since my kids love going to the library and getting books, I thought adding “reading is fun” would be a great option.  I used a green marker (you could use whatever color you’d like).  I wrote my phrase in cursive with my green marker.  You could use your pencil to write your name or phrase and then go over it with the fabric marker.  You could also use fabric paint, or even iron-on letter patches to customize the tote bag if you are not fond of your own handwriting.


Step 7: If you use a fabric marker to write your name or phrase, go over it a few times for a darker line.


That’s it!  Your tote bag is ready for a trip to your local library to refresh your reading stash.  Or, use it to carry your books to and from school.  This DIY reading is fun notebook tote bag would also make a great end of school year gift for the teacher(s) in your life! Enjoy!