DIY Belt Strap Tote

You know I love finding practical uses for old items and currently I'm obsessed with thrifted belts!   For just a couple bucks you can typically find quality leather or a fun color.  After craving a new market tote, I shared this DIY at Sand & Sisal a few weeks back.  And by using an already made tote, it's a simple way to customize and upgrade a boring bag.  
  Perfect for picnics, farmer's markets & flea markets, tote bags are a personal Springtime favorite!


Materials Needed:
Canvas Tote
*I bought this 3 pack for $6.99*
Nylon or Leather Belt
*I found mine for $1-2 at local thrift stores*
Starter Punch
*For $5 this one is the perfect size!
Scrap Wood
Rubber Mallet 
Binding Post Screws
*I used 8 of these on each bag, but depending on the thickness of your bag and belt you may need to go bigger/smaller*

To Make:

Take your tote and cut off any existing handles.
If your bag is as wrinkled as mine, now's a good time to iron it.
Take your belt and cut two handles of equal length.
*Helpful Tip: If cutting nylon be sure to burn the edges to prevent fraying.
From there, decide the placement of your handle, and mark with a pencil if needed.
After deciding where you want your holes, place your starter punch over both the belt and tote.  Hold steady and use a mallet to hammer on the starter punch to make a hole:
*Be sure to do this on a hard surface and it's essential to have a piece of wood under your tote for the starter punch to compress into.  
From there simply screw your binding posts together to attach your belt to your tote.
Continue to punch holes and attach your handle until your bag is finished:
For my leather strap tote, I did the same process, but opted to round the edges of my handles and placed them slightly lower:
So whether you're headed to the beach or looking for a new market tote, I hope this inspires you to go out and customize one of your own!

Want to upcycle more belts?
Check out this DIY turning old belts, fabric and cardboard boxes
 into pretty storage bins.