The term tote or tate, meaning “to carry”, can be traced back to the 17th century but was not used to describe bags until 1900. However, the tote bag craze in the United States began in the 1940s with the release of L.L. Bean’s Boat Bag in 1944. Because they were easier than carrying luggage, most people opted for using tote bags. During the 1950s, tote bags began to enter into the main culture. Women primarily utilized them as practical handheld bags because they didn’t require much care. It wasn’t until the 1960s when the tote bag embraced personal style. Bonnie Cohen released her own line of tote bags called Cashin Carry Tote Bags which combined style and functionality. In the 1990s, Kate Spade ultimately transformed how American culture embraced tote bags when she began carrying them as fashion bags. Today, fashion lovers and consumers can find tote bags in a variety of decorations and themes.
Tote bags come in all shapes and sizes and they are useful for stashing all sorts of things. Fashionable and functional, they can be used to store anything from sewing supplies to groceries and can function as a purse or a storage container. Tote bags can be made from funky designer fabric or from plain canvas, from old denim jeans or from felt. Sew yourself a few today.
Tote bags need to be roomy and strong. When you have good intentions for reusing your own bags for many years you need bags that will not break over time and that can carry lots of potentially heavy items. Whatever type of tote you intend to make, use materials that are strong and hardwearing and use construction techniques that provide maximum strength. Try to design a tote with few seams to reduce the potential for wear and tear. Handles need to be anchored well to the tote with reinforced seams.
Tote bags, similar in style to reusable shopping bags, are a favorite choice for promotional bags for many different types of events. They are easy to buy in bulk, and many different companies are able to screen print information onto them, such as the corporate logo or the dates of the event. If only a limited number of bags are needed, it may be possible to have a few creative employees do the screen printing themselves, since many things can just be ironed on. Sometimes the promotional bags are the gift in themselves, and sometimes companies choose to fill them with other items such as pens, keychains, or literature and brochures relevant to the event.
Promotional bags are a common item handed out at conferences, conventions, or other events for advertising purposes. Tote bags are some of the most common since they are inexpensive to make, and are fairly easy to screen print in order to display the name and logo of a company. Some firms will also hand out small promotional backpacks. Or, if it is necessary to just hand out a small number of items or papers, sturdy plastic promotional bags may be used. These are very cheap and are easy to order in bulk.