At my children's preschool, they ask that the children use a tote bag instead of a backpack. It's easier for the children to carry and easier for the teachers to put papers into.
I purchased a plain canvas tote bag from the craft store and used some craft supplies and fabric we had on hand to decorate them.
The first year my son was in preschool, he loved Thomas the train. So, I took some Thomas fabric I had and cut out the square pictures. I hemmed the edges and sewed them onto the bag.
By the time his second year at preschool rolled around, he wasn't a big fan of Thomas anymore, so I removed the Thomas fabric pieces and stitched on some space-themed fabric, cut into the shapes of stars, planets and rocket ships.
Last year was my daughter's first year of preschool and she requested a ballerina bag. I created the head and hair from felt and handstitched the face. The body, arms, legs and feet were painted on with puffy paint. I sewed on the tulle for the tutus and added scrapbooking brads for the little bows and flowers in the ballerinas hair. She still loves her bag so we'll be using it again this school year.
I hope our school totes give you some ideas or inspiration for creating your own child's school tote. I know when I was looking for ideas, I saw so many cute and creative ideas. If you have your own school tote design to share, please leave a reply with a link, to share your craftiness with our readers!