Design, color, and stitch a beach tote with Mont Marte [free tutorial]

Yesterday we finished a lampshade cover, painted using the lovely Mont Marte Signature Fabric Paint Set. Today, I’m showing you how to embellish and stitch an adorable beach tote with Mont Marte and their Mont Marte Signature Fabric Art Set. This art set includes fabric markers, fabric paint sticks, puffy paints and the canvas tote making it an easy DIY project. This can be a great project to do with children.

The embellished canvas beach tote


  • Mont Marte Signature Fabric Art Set with canvas tote included
  • fine permanent marker
  • blue wash-out pen or pencil
  • sketch pad
  • sketching pencil
  • eraser
  • medium rickrack
  • pre-sketched design of your choice (see photo below)
  • ruler to mark center and lettering lines
  • black thread for bobbin and top spool
  • iron for heat setting

Materials you need to make an embellished beach tote


  1. Take the tote bag out of the Mont Marte Signature Fabric Art Set and prewash it. If you’re using any other blank tote bag, be sure to prewash and do not use fabric softener as it may interfere with marker pigments.
  2. Draw a design; I chose Fun in The Sun (my own sketch).

2 sketches of designs for the front of a canvas tote – I chose Fun in The Sun!

3. Find the center of the tote and plan out the lettering placement with a ruler and a blue wash-out marker.

Finding the center and making lines on the canvas tote for letter placement

4. Draw the design with a blue washout marker by referring to the sketch and use a ruler where necessary.

A design drawn with a blue wash out marker

5. Outline the blue lines with a black fine, permanent marker.

TIP Make sure this marker is colorfast by testing it on a piece of fabric first. Spray test the lines with water to saturate the canvas – if it doesn’t bleed it’s good to use.

The design is outlined with a black fine permanent marker.

6. Wash out the blue marker and allow the bag to dry completely.

7. Color in all of the designs with the art supplies from the Mont Marte Signature Fabric Art Set. I used markers and paint sticks.

8. Sew rickrack to the top edge of the canvas tote ¾” from the top.

9. Stitch with free motion stitching around all the black lines. The threads I used and the method for stitching are the same as in yesterday’s post for Free motion stitching on a DIY lampshade cover – Part 3.

TIP You’ll need to remove any machine table and use the free arm to free motion sew the outlines.

Free motion outlining with the free arm of the sewing machine

Canvas tote embellished with the Mont Marte Signature Fabric Art Set, Gütermann Thread, and UNIQUE Medium rickrack in pink

Can you see this tote bag as a great project for the kids to color? Additionally, you can free motion stitch it as a collaborative effort. It’s sew easy with the Mont Marte Signature Fabric Art Set with a canvas bag included. Alternatively, make many more of your own totes for all your kids, nieces, nephews, friends, and grandkids. The markers and paint sticks last a long time and you can get many projects done with Mont Marte art supplies.

Tomorrow, I’ll show you how to embellish a blank apron (pre-made and pre-purchased) with Mont Marte Fabric Paint Sticks. There’s also a free pattern download for this design, so be sure to read the post.

This is part 4 of 5 in this series

Go back to part 3: Free motion stitching on a DIY lampshade cover – Part 3

Go to part 5: Painting on fabric is fun with Mont Marte paint sticks [free pattern]

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