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How Do You Personalize a Tote Bag?

05/31/2023 branding_basics

Whether you’re headed to the grocery store, commuting to the office or walking around an event, tote bags are a popular option for carrying all of your personal items. They allow you express your personal style through a fashionable accessory, while also taking advantage of their practicality and functionality.

Plus, they can be customized with designs, logos, slogans & colors, making them perfect for promotional events, corporate gifting, or employee merchandise. If you’re looking to add tote bags to your suite of promotional products, here’s how you can personalize them to fit your branding.

Can You Design Your Own Bag?

Yes! But first, let’s take a look at how a typical tote bag is designed. A standard tote bag traditionally features a simple and rectangular design with two sturdy handles, which allows for easy carrying in your hand or on your shoulder.

Unlike most purses, tote bags are typically open at the top and lack any zippers or closures, allowing easy access to its contents. Additionally, they’re commonly made of durable materials and offer a spacious interior, providing a versatile bag for everyday use.

While these are general design notes for tote bags, you absolutely have the opportunity to design your own bag and customize certain elements of it. Here are some of the ways we’ve seen our own customers personalize their promotional tote bags.


One of the easiest ways to customize your tote bag is through color. Start by strategizing your color choice – think about your company’s aesthetic, branding or even the event where you’ll be distributing these totes. Additionally, keep your customers in mind, what colors will resonate with them?

Vibrant and bold colors can make a statement, while softer hues offer a more subtle and elegant touch. When in doubt, refer back to your brand guidelines and ensure the tote is recognizably designed by your company. You’ll also want to make sure the color works with the ones in your logo.


Tote bags are commonly made of durable materials such as canvas, cotton, or nylon, each providing different benefits depending on the tote’s intended use. Canvas is known for its durability, making it ideal for heavy-duty use. On the other hand, cotton tote bags are lightweight and breathable for everyday use.

If you’re looking for a tote that can survive both weather and wear and tear, nylon would be a great choice, as it’s water-resistant and easy to clean. This also makes nylon tote bags the best choice for outdoor activities or travel. Outside of these standard material options, you can find specialty options like leather or recycled materials that offer different textures, or even align with sustainability values.


Although commonly large to carry all your belongings, tote bags do come in a range of sizes that you can customize.

  • Small tote bags are compact and easy to store
  • Medium-sized totes offer more space to accommodate a bit more than the bare essentials
  • Large or extra-large tote bags are spacious enough to carry bulkier items such as groceries, beach gear, or sports equipment. They can even serve as overnight bags

Choosing the right tote bag size depends on the intended use, the amount of items you plan to carry & personal comfort, so be sure to think about the people who will be using them. If it’s a one-day expo, you’re probably fine with a small or medium sized tote. But if you’re distributing tote bags for a weekend-long business trip, it might be best to choose a large or extra-large size.

Prints, Patterns & Logo

Lastly, designing a tote bag with your company logo, prints, or patterns is a stylish way to promote your brand, and allows your logo to be seen wherever the bag is brought. There is also ample room on a tote bag to place your logo, whether you decide to put it on the front, back, side or handle. To keep it minimal, simply place your logo on a blank tote bag.

Or if you’re looking for something a little bolder, go with a fun color or pattern that your logo goes on top of. As mentioned above, experiment with colors and patterns based on your brand or theme of the event you’re attending, and make sure they don’t take too much attention away from your logo.

Personalized Tote Bags in Bulk with Your Company Logo

Stay stylish at expos, events and company outings with personalized tote bags, available to buy and customize in bulk through Staples Promotional Products. Choose from a variety of colors, materials & sizes tailored to your brand’s needs. Once you choose the exact item you want, you can even preview how the final product will look before you choose how many totes to purchase.

How Do You Personalize a Tote Bag