How to Make a Walker Tote Bag
A Quick and Easy Project that Provides Practical Help
There are many different ways to sew a walker tote, but I will demonstrate a very easy one that makes this project one you can complete from start to finish in the matter of a couple of hours. It has large pockets for storage and hook & loop tape to hold it onto the walker.
Because this project requires no buttons or ties, it is a great beginner's sewing project. It is also done up very quickly which makes it perfect for charity sewing groups to construct assembly line style.
This page starts with a video overview so that you have the general idea of how the project develops. Then I walk you through the steps in more detail with photos and written directions.
The Walker Tote Completed
An Overview of How to Sew a Walker Tote Bag
Making the Walker Tote: What You Need
Assemble Your Supplies
The supplies needed for a walker bag are minimal and can use remnants or repurposed cloth.
To make a walker bag, you need two pieces of fabric that are 14-15 inches wide and 43-53 inches long. The fabric can be identical or contrasting. I like the look of the pockets and the background being different, so I am using two complementary but different fabrics in my tutorial.
I am using a very thick cloth -- the stripe is canvas and the plaid is an upholstery fabric. Although the thicker fabrics are a bit harder to work with, they offer a very nice finished product that is more durable and able to hold heavier loads without sagging.
- You will need 6 inches of sew-on hook and loop tape (Velcro), cut into two 3 inch pieces (four pieces when you separate the hook side from the loop side).
- And of course you will use thread in an appropriate color.
Sew Both Sides Together
Once your fabric is cut to the size you want, pin right sides together and sew all the way around, leaving an opening large enough to turn the tote inside out. I made my opening about 6 inches long.
When the sewing is complete, trim across the corners to make them easier to turn.
At this stage, I prefer to iron my seams open as best I can. Even though I can't iron them perfectly, I find flattening the seams a bit helps me to get a nice crisp edge when I turn the walker tote right side out. This step is optional if you don't find it helpful.
Once the tote is right side out, iron it thoroughly so that the edges lay flat and the corners are as square as possible. I find a chopstick helpful for pushing the corners out. For the opening, simply iron it as if it were sewn, with the right edges turned under.
Sew on the Velcro
Attach the Velcro
On the back side (inside) of your walker, pin down the three inch hook and loop (Velcro) tabs and sew them into place.
Velcro Placement Guide
Measure the center of the walker tote. The hook and loop tape should be sewn five inches from the center and 1 ½ inches from the side. See the diagram above.
Create the Pockets
Who is Your Walker Tote For?
What will you do with your walker tote?See results without voting
Sew Along Edges and Make Pockets
Don't worry about the opening. It will get sewn up at this point.
Fold up the ends of the fabric to make pockets on both sides. Measure it so that the pockets come up the same distance from the center. The pocket depth can vary, but generally you want the pockets to come up to the level of the top of the Velcro, hiding the stitching underneath. That means the top of the pockets will be five inches from the center of the tote.
Pin the pockets into place along the sides, matching the edges carefully. Then sew a straight line from the bottom of one side, across the pocket, over the middle section, and onto the pocket on the other side. This straight line of sewing should be close to the edge. It will lock in the opening you left to turn the tote right side out. Repeat this straight stitch for the other side too.
Then sew straight up the center of each pocket to form two smaller pockets. Be sure to reinforce the top of the pocket with some extra forward and backward stitching that goes well past the edge of the pocket. You want the pocket to be able to withstand the weight of whatever it carries.
Now your walker tote is done. All that is left to do is trim all the stray threads and possibly give it another go under the iron.
Test it Out
Drape it over the back of a chair or towel bar to test it out. Does the Velcro match and hold it in place? Does it hold a bottle of water or a book easily?
Use it or Give it Away
You can now use your walker tote yourself, give it to a friend or relative, or donate it to charity such as a nursing home or therapeutic clinic.
More Walker Bag Ideas
- Walker Tote Directions at Bev's Country Cottage
This tote is similar to my own because it uses Velcro.
- The Quilting Belle: Walker Bag Tutorial
This tutorial uses buttons, so it is quite a bit more complicated than my design.
- Walker Tote Pattern PDF from Buckets Gone Wild
This is the inspiration for my own walker tote directions. I have simplified the directions by removing the need for bias tape so that it is faster to make.
Why a Walker Tote?
Imagine needing a walker to get around. Now consider how you would carry a purse or backpack if you were unsteady on your feet. It would be a nuisance at best and a danger at worst as it shifted its weight on your body.
With a walker totebag, the burden is placed where it belongs -- on the metal bars of the walker -- and not on the shoulders or back of the person already struggling to walk.
If making a walker tote seems too much trouble, there are plenty of talented seamstresses online who would love to sell you a premade one. See the patterns and styles available at eBay below.
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