Thursday, April 14, 2011

LL Bean Monogrammed Canvas Bags (A Little "Faked")

I love those pretty canvas bags from LL Bean.  They're so classic.  Instantly recognizable.  They're personalized with your monogram.  They're so darn expensive! 

Bringing your own grocery bags to the store is all the rage today.  If you're and Aldi shopper like me, it's not just fashionable, it's necessary.  Well, just because you're a bargain shopper doesn't mean you have to look like one and these bags will keep them guessing why you're in Aldi and not at Fresh Market!

I nearly fell to my knees when I saw these bags at the Dollar Tree:

They only had 4 left in the store so I ran home to to order a case of 36. 

So, this craft is pretty straightforward. We're going to paint a monogram on the front pocket of the bags to look like LL Bean's classic tote bag. 

Trace a stencil, or freehand your monogram using a fine tip marker.  Usually, a monogram has the initial of the person's last name in the middle, with the initial of ther first name to the left and the initial of their middle name to the right.  The middle letter is larger than the side letters.

With some craft/fabric paint in the color of your choice, trace the sketched letters.

Can you tell the difference?  Now I just have 35 more to go!  These will make terrific Christmas (already??)  gifts for my friends and family if I bundle 4 together for each of them to take on their shopping runs! 

*Update* If you're interested in another way to make these monograms, check out my Follow-Up Post!

The Fake-It Yourself Breakdown:

36 Personally Monogrammed Canvas Bags

Total Fake-It Cost $36.00

36 Personally Monogrammed Canvas Bags from LLBean - Plain Bag, Similar Size $20.00, with monogram $6 per bag, $936.00 for 36 Bags (Holy Crap!)

Total Fake-It Yourself Savings $900.00


  1. i love this!!!!! do they still sell the bags in store? maybe I will find one there. Anyway, I found U through Facebook today you were the dollar tree's post. So just wanted to say HELLO from your newest follower friend :)

    Thanks for sharing your creativity!


  2. Thanks, Amber! Yes, they should have them in the stores, but I think they're popular because they sold out in a day at my local Dollar Tree. Thanks for your comment! Cheers!

  3. You know.... I have 2 things coming up in May, lol! You can give me mine as my anniversary present... or give one to Anthony with my initials for his birthday. ;)
    These are truly awesome! I am so jealous of your motivation! :D

  4. WOW !!! so impressed. BTW , my name is Lakshmi from va and I love dollar tree stuff and do crafy work on little little items to make it look so distinct ...
    thanks for such nice idea

  5. I saw your Facebook post, too. Nice job on this - great idea!

  6. Hi! I love this idea! Thanks for sharing. I am going to my local Dollar Tree soon and try this! I am a new follower. Looking forward to reading more!

  7. my daughter uses these bags with her young children she uses them to carry every where thanks for sharing her birthday is soon and I will try this for that

  8. DonnaSaves CouponsJune 19, 2011 at 12:11 AM

    I have these same bags and use them for grocery shopping. I loved them so much I went back and grabbed several more. My daughter and I use Iron on transfers, ribbons and of course gems and have transformed them into pretty nice bags. Not bad for a buck!

  9. :ove your idea. But I went to Dollar tree web site and could not find them. Would you mind giving me the item number or a little more information.
    I sure would like to make some of those too.
    I sure am enjoying your blog. Thank you for sharing your ideas.

  10. Hi Judi! It may be that Dollar Tree is out of stock on them now. Perhaps they'll have them in stock again next April! Another resource for similar bags is the Oriental Trading Company, though they may not be $1 each, they'll still be a bargain in comparison to LL Bean's!

  11. Wow, just stumbled upon your blog and already fell in love with the first two posts I've read. I have been wanting something similar for my bridesmaids but just can't see spending $20-50 a piece. Off to I go...

  12. Love this idea, went to dollar tree site, guess I am a little late... just found your site and love it :)

  13. I found these last year at Dollar Tree... Now I'm wishing I would've grabbed more! I hope they get them again this year, because I know what I'm going to make for Christmas presents!! :) Thanks for the idea!! :)

  14. Found them today at dollar tree!!

  15. are they stiff like the fabric L.L. Bean uses or soft feeling? This idea is terrific for gifts for lots of occasions or even just as a "gift bag" for another gift. Smart blog....


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