This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Cricut. All opinions are 100% mine.
Hello! As you may know, I’m a huuuuge fan of thrifting. And honestly, I’m missing it so much right now! But, until it’s safe to shop in person,I thought I’d make a DIY tote bag design so I could have a bag to take thrifting. I used to go 1-2 a week and I like to bring my own bag so I don’t have to use a plastic one. Some stores charge a $1 for using a plastic bag so I just bring my own
And although thinking about the stuff I can’t do right now may seem sad, preparing for when we can enjoy my favorite things has been helping.
I’ll tell you something cheesy- I like to imagine when everything is open again. How happy I’ll be to drop my son off at school! And go to the beach! And thrift shop. And have dinner at a restaurant with my friends. I picture it and think about how joyful it’ll be to do these normal things that I once took for granted. It’s great because I get to feel happy picturing it now.
the Cricut Joy
To make this project, I’m going to be using the Cricut Joy. It’s a smaller cutting machine from Cricut. Which is great! I live in a tiny house- 890 square feet! And have zero space for a craft room. So all my crafting is done on my dining room table. Using the Joy is so great because I can make things and the machine only takes a little room and can be done quickly.
One of the amazing things about the Joy is that you can use it as a companion to the Cricut Maker or Air 2 since it has unique features like not needing a mat or it can make extra long cuts. OR you can use it on its own if you haven’t gotten a bigger cutting machine yet.
Another benefit I wanted to mention is that the Joy is that you don’t need a mat with most of the materials like vinyl or labels. This means that there’s less to buy, less to store and it’s faster to make items!
The Cricut Joy is small, but there’s so many simple projects you can make with it! I thought I’d show you three.
diy tote bag design
- Cricut Joy
- Smart Iron-on– I used Pink, Blush, Mustard, Bright Teal, and Teal
- Weeding Tool, scissors, burnish tool
- Cricut EasyPress mini
- Canvas Bag
step 1 create the design
Start by designing what you want to cut out on Cricut Design space. I used font available in the Cricut Design Space and saved my design here if you want to do exactly what I did.
To make your own words, type words and then change the font to one you like. I kept a measuring tape and the tote bag next to my computer so I could easily figure out what would fit and size accordingly.
I changed the color on each item as I imported the image so I knew what color of iron-on I wanted each piece to be cut out on. That way, when it was time for cutting, all the pink items (and teal items and yellow items, etc.) are grouped together so they can be cut together.
Click Make It at the top of the canvas to continue the process.
step 2 print the design
Before cutting, make sure to mirror each image. This flips the image and is extremely important to do if you’re printing words. Make sure to toggle over on the mirror setting or else you’ll get backwards letters/pattern.
Set the material on Design Space to “Smart iron-on.” This will tell your machine how deep to cut the pattern. Feed the vinyl into the machine shiny side side down. Then push Go and it’ll start cutting! Repeat for each color you’re printing.
And now, since the design is cut, it’s time to weed the iron-on vinyl. This is when you remove all the vinyl that’s not part of the design. Start in one corner and dig the tip of the weeding tool into the vinyl (as long as you don’t dig into the design). Then pull the vinyl off with your fingers. Use the weeding tool again if you need to get into any tight spots.
step 4 adhere iron on vinyl
Finally, it’s time to adhere the vinyl to the tote bag. For this, I’m suing a Cricut Mini EasyPress, but you could also use an iron. To prep, I put rags in the inside of the bag. This gives you a small “ironing board” and protects the surface you’re ironing on.
Now, to adhere the vinyl, set the Mini EasyPress on the highest setting. Press the bag for 5-10 seconds to help flatten the surface you’re working on which also begins the adhesion process.
Next, iron the design directly onto the plastic. Hold the EasyPress down for 15-30 seconds Then pick it up and move it if the image is larger than the iron or EasyPress.
Once the decal has cooled down, peel back the plastic sheet from the image. If the vinyl is adhered to the backpack and the plastic comes up easily, you’re in good shape! If it is stilly sticking or pulling up, put the plastic down and apply more heat.
I made two of these and on the second one I had issues getting the iron-on to adhere-
Here’s what I did wrong- to prep the bag for adding on the vinyl I ironed it first and used steam. I think that I must have not totally dried the bag. Water is the enemy of getting the iron-on to adhere so MAKE SURE you’re working on 100% dry material.
Here is the tote bag all complete! I’m really happy with how it turned out! I also considered using the words “get thrifty with it.” There’s so many options for making a completely diy tote bag design!
One day I’ll be able to fill this with the best knick knacks! I’m counting down the days.
Another thing the Cricut Joy is great for is by creating labels! For this I used the Smart Label and a black Cricut pen. The pen replaces the need for ink. You just put it where the cutting tool normally is and it draws the words for the label! Here’s the link to my project in Design Space I used to make labels for my sugar and flour.
Note, after my label printed I colored the inside of the words.
One of the coolest parts of the Cricut Joy is that you can make really intricate cool cards in minutes! You just put your card on a card mat and then choose a design in Design Space (this is the one I used). Then watch it cut!
When you’re done, remove the cut out pieces of the design. Then, tuck a piece of card stock in the card so the design shows. The perfect size of card stock comes with the cards from Cricut. It’s so easy and the cards are gorgeous!
I made these three projects- the card, labels, and DIY tote bag design all in one morning and it was so fun to just sit and create! It was my first time trying out the new Cricut Joy and I found it really easy to figure out. I’m loving how you don’t really need mats so making projects is fast. The size is also really great- so easy to grab and make something quickly.
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