When I was in Tokyo almost 6 years ago, I saw a lot of cool girls carrying around these big ruffled canvas totes. Being a fan of all thing flouncy and ruffly (that’s probably not a word) I tried to find one to buy but in the end I decided make one once I got home. I thought it was smarter to use the money to buy Japanese fabrics.
Why did it take me almost 6 years to finally make this tote? Life, I guess and the never ending list of d.i.y. projects. Yet oddly enough the timing of this tote is just right. I know I will use it a lot this summer. Hopefully it won’t take another 6 years before I make garments from the fabrics I bought in Tokyo!

It was just enough to paint a couple pieces of fabric. I painted one while wet and it resulted in a less contrasted pattern, so I used it for the lining.

Believe it or not but the tote fabric is actually hand painted toile fabric. I had a little left over reactive dye solution when I was working on my thesis and didn’t want to waste it.

All in all, this was a fun and useful d.i.y. project. I finally got my ruffle tote and a unique one at that. It was also a reminder to use all the scraps and leftover materials, to really try not to let anything go to waste.

The one I painted while dry got a more of a tie dye effect that I really liked. I added darts because I wanted volume but felt a gusset would take attention away from the ruffles.

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