DIY Embroidered Reusable Shopping Bag


I use my reusable grocery bags all of the time, but there is something so very special about using one I decorated myself. I was asked to start selling these at the local co-op. We’ll see if that idea pans out, but they’re fun to create on a lazy afternoon.


  • Reusable grocery bag
  • Embroidery floss in multiple colors
  • Embroidery needles (these are different than regular sewing needles- the eye is slightly larger to accommodate the slightly larger thread)
  • Embroidery hoop- you can use any size, but if it’s smaller than the design, you will have to move the hoop around throughout the project
  • Paper and a pencil and dark marker


Begin by drawing up a sketch of what you want on your bag. I sketched my drawing in pencil first so I could make alterations if needed.

Then I went over the pencil lines with skinny permanent marker so they’d be more visible when I transferred them onto the bag.


I placed the drawing inside the bag. The bag was thin enough and light enough in color that I could see the drawing through the fabric of the bag. I traced the lines with pencil on to the bag.

Attach embroidery hoop to bag so that fabric is taut. Thread needle with whatever color you are going to use first. Cut a length of thread about a foot long, or a length that you think will be long enough to fill in the lines you intend to fill. Tie a knot on the end of the thread.

The best stitch for an embroidery illustration like this one is a backstitch. In fact, that’s the one I use most in all my embroidery projects.

To backstitch, push the needle through the fabric from the bottom side up. Make a small stitch about a half centimeter long. Push the needle back through the fabric about a half a centimeter farther down the design. Pull it through until it is taut. Then insert it back into the hole where the end of the first stitch is.

This process is illustrated below. If you still have a hard time grasping it, there are several resources online and videos you can check out. Follow this process to trace the entire pattern, using the various colors of thread you have chosen.


Ta-Da!!! This is my finished project. What do you think?!



Anyone remember this bag that I created when I first started blogging??


7 thoughts on “DIY Embroidered Reusable Shopping Bag

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