Have you noticed I’m heading toward fall kicking and screaming?
Well…maybe not the screaming part, but I’m totally in denial that summer is almost over.
Fortunately for me, summer temperatures will stretch into October here in Southeast Alabama and that means more beach trips, sand between my toes, and sunshine on my shoulders.
But…you can’t just hop off to the beach without all your stuff, right?
And what better way to carry it than in a DIY beach bag!
Let’s Make a Beach Bag
Earlier this summer I bought a canvas bag at Hobby Lobby because I had misplaced my normal market bag. Of course I found it later and ended up not needing the new one after all.
So I started thinking about what I could do with it instead, and a fun little beach tote seemed like the perfect idea.
Don’t you just love canvas bags? There’s all kinds of decorated options to choose from, but mine was just a plain ole’ bag. It needed some love! 🙂
If you’re crazy about the beach too, then gather up a few supplies and let’s get started on this fun and easy tote. You can have it beach ready in less than an hour!
And if you’re not crazy about the beach (Whaaaat?), just take this idea and adapt it to something you do love.
In addition to a canvas bag, you’ll need:
- a pair of children’s flip-flops (I got mine at The Dollar Tree. Don’t pay much for them because we’re going to destroy them.)
- fabric paints of your choice
- sponge brush
- alphabet stencils (I found these adhesive stencils at Hobby Lobby and I’m totally hooked!)
- stencil brush
- hot glue gun and glue
- beach-themed buttons
- grosgrain ribbon (not pictured)
- flat-backed stones (not pictured)
So why are the ribbon and stones missing from the picture?
Well, the absolute truth is that when I began this project, I had a “brilliant” idea of how I’d decorate the flip-flops on the bag and it did not work! So the ribbon and stones were a secondary idea and I’m a little giddy because I love how it turned out so much better than my original plan.
Sometimes it works that way!
Let’s just go ahead and do the destructive work to those flip-flops. If you have boys, they’ll love this. If you have boys…you know what I mean!
Clip the button holds from the bottom and take the strap off. My original plan was to use the straps, but since that didn’t work, just throw them all away.
Coat the bottom of a flip-flop with fabric paint. Make sure you give it a good coating and get down into the treads.
I didn’t have any problem with the paint bleeding through the canvas, but did slip a piece of heavy cardboard into the bag just in case. It also provided a solid backing to work on, so I recommend you use one.
Press the flip-flop down on the bag where you want it. Working with your fingers, press down on every inch of the flip-flop until you’ve transferred the paint to the bag. Just “stamping” it on won’t give you a good transfer.
Don’t worry about the holes where the straps were attached. We’ll use those later as guides to attach the new ones.
Repeat the process with the second flip-flop.
Decide what message you want to put on your bag and arrange your stencil. Another great thing about these adhesive stencils is that they make spacing a breeze.
Using the stencil brush, stencil on your message.
Next, sew on the buttons. Just arrange them however you like.
Would you like to know what doesn’t work? Attaching plastic straps to a canvas bag does not work!
Hot glue won’t hold them. Craft glue won’t work. And spray adhesive does a fantastic job of adhering fingers to canvas – but not plastic straps! 🙂
So save yourself the trouble and just grab some ribbon and flat-backed stones.
Start by cutting a strip of ribbon a bit longer than the length from the top hole to one of the back holes.
Using the hole as a guide, hot glue the ribbon to the top.
Following the pattern of the original strap, twist the ribbon and glue the opposite side down to one of the back holes.
Repeat with a second length of ribbon.
Hot glue the stones on the ends of the ribbon, and you’re done.
Pack your bag, and you’re ready to head to the beach!
How easy was that?
Squeeze some more goodness out of summer. 🙂