Now, this might sound silly, but it’s true – almost six years ago, I Googled my little heart out, trying to find a cute, affordable, and sturdy yoga mat bag, but came up short. Too pricey, too flimsy, or too fancy…then it hit me: why not make it myself?
Of course, six years ago, I was sans sewing machine, but I did have some random crafting supplies, and determination! I found a easy-enough looking tutorial online (from a sadly now-defunct website) and hatched my plan to create my one-of-a-kind yoga mat bag.
In my many Internet searches, I had decided that I wanted to use some sort of durable fabric that would withstand the abuse of being thrown in and out of my car, scrunched into lockers, and more. Plus, since I was practicing Bikram Yoga very regularly at the time, it needed to have increased airflow capability to dry out a bit after sweaty sessions.
Believe it or not, the perfect material presented itself one day when I was shopping at Marshall’s. I am sure you have seen them – those cute, 99 cent shopping totes that are hanging by the check out area! I bought an armful of them, headed home, and got to work in creating my first bag! Now, it took a few hours, but I really was proud of my project and proceeded to use the bag for the next few years (really) – and the other totes sat lonely in a large Tupperware bin, moving with us from Florida, to Virginia and back again.
About two years ago, I re-visited my totes, and worked on two more yoga bags – one, I gifted to my sister, and the other, I had planned to blog about, as a possible fundraising option (selling the bags in exchange for charity donations – still thinking about doing this in the future!) But, life happened, and the bag was stuffed back into the bin…until now.
Now, with the aid of my trusty sewing machine, I am proud to share this DIY Yoga Mat Bag tutorial – adapted from the original, but free-styled and simplified.
DIY Yoga Mat bag
- 99 ct Shopping Tote
- Seam Ripper
- Tape Measure
- Needle/Coordinating Thread
- Rotary Cutter (optional)
- Sewing Machine (optional)
- Choose a cute shopping tote.
- Remove the stitches/edging length wise around the tote.
- Separate pieces – tote ‘body’ and ‘sides.’
- Lay out flattened tote body, measure 30 inches, trim off excess.
- Lay out ‘sides’ – stack fold, and sew together to make a 34 inch bag strap.
- Turn trimmed body inside out.
- Fold 1″ tab on bottom of body, sew.
- Place strap edge in the bottom corner of body.
- Sew length-wise, approximately 1″ from edge.
- Turn entire project inside out (like a wind sock).
- Sew straight line to secure strap on bottom.
- Sew top of strap
I love how this particular tote -turned-yoga-bag turned out – and now that I have the steps pretty well worked out, I am eager to collect some more totes for conversion. And, with this new design, I eliminated the need to purchase additional components (ribbon in version one) and with the documented measurements, I still have a big piece of tote left, which can be used toward pouches (possibly coordinating zipper pouches?) or other fun things! Additionally, with my new embroidery machine, there’s potential for personalization, too!
I hope you enjoyed this tutorial – let me know if you try it!