DIY Crafts How to Make a Pillowcase Tote

Published on November 2nd, 2013 | by Becky Striepe


How to Make a Pillowcase Tote Bag with Hemp Webbing (and giveaway reminder!)

How to Make a Pillowcase Tote

Learn how to make a simple tote bag from an old pillowcase and sustainable hemp webbing.

Not only do I have a tutorial for you today, I’m here to remind you to enter our Hemptique giveaway! Click on over to see the prize pack they’re offering and to find out how to enter.

Like I mentioned on Wednesday, I was super excited to discover that Hemptique carries hemp webbing. I love making tote bags, but conventional webbing is normally made from dirty cotton or from polyester (aka plastic). Boo on that! Hemptique’s hemp webbing is a sustainable alternative to conventional webbing, and it’s a joy to work with!

The tutorial below is for a super simple tote bag. All that you need to make it are a vintage pillowcase, hemp webbing, and basic sewing supplies. If you want to jazz it up, I’ve rounded up a few resources for you:

How to make a Pillowcase Tote Bag


  • 1 vintage pillowcase
  • 2 24″ pieces of hemp webbing
  • measuring tape
  • fabric scissors
  • sewing machine, thread, pins, iron


1. Iron your pillowcase, then measure 15 1/2″ from the top opening, and cut your pillowcase horizontally at that spot:

How to cut the pillowcase

2. Set the bottom half aside for another project, then turn your pillowcase inside out, and iron again. Use your machine to sew along the unfinished edge, making sure to back-stitch at the start and end of your row of stitches. Turn the case right side out again, and iron once more.

How to sew the bottom

3. Iron your lengths of hemp webbing, and pin them to the insides of your bag’s top, like this:

How to pin the straps

4. Sew two rows of stitches all the way around the top of your bag. One row will be about 1/8″ from the bottom of the webbing. The top row should be about 1/8″ from the top of the bag, like so:

How to sew the top5. Give everything another press, and you are ready to tote, my friends!

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About the Author

My name is Becky Striepe (rhymes with “sleepy”), and I am a crafts and food writer from Atlanta, Georgia with a passion for making our planet a healthier, happier, and more compassionate place to live. My mission is to make vegan food and crafts accessible to everyone!. If you like my work, you can also find me on Twitter, Facebook, and .

One Response to How to Make a Pillowcase Tote Bag with Hemp Webbing (and giveaway reminder!)

  1. Shelly Daugherty says:

    If I won the awesome giveaway, :) I would use some for gift wrapping, and making n hanging ornaments!

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