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How To Clean Your Canvas Tote Bag

Canvas tote bags are now a regular sight that accompanies women's outfits. Virtually every 21st-century woman owns one. This trend is due to the extreme ease that the tote bag brings with it. The bags are stylish and versatile and can go with almost any clothing. Canvas tote bags make great accessories whether you are shopping, going to the gym, strolling to the park, or trying to meet up with more serious engagements. If you don't know how to clean your canvas tote bag perfectly; however, you may not have as much fun with it. Here's how to properly do that and enjoy the most of your bag.

Things To Consider Before Cleaning Your Canvas Bag

cleaning your canvas tote bag

There are a few things that would determine the cleaning method that is appropriate for your bag. For some bags, you are better off spot cleaning while for others, you can wash manually or with your machine.

Canvas tote bags come in different styles and are often embroidered. The first step that you need to take to properly clean the bag is to check out what beauty accessories come with the bag. The best advice would be to remove these add-ons but it is not all of them you can just peel off. Before you begin washing, you have to watch out for these embroidering so that you do not peel off the beauty of the bag.

If your bag comes with prints, patterns, and painting that you do not want to mess up, you should conduct your washing at a cool temperature. If the canvas tote bag comes with bright, sassy colors, you should make sure that the color does not fade out. Separate the bag that is likely to bleed out from other items you might be washing. To know whether your bag is going to fade out and lose all the color, dip a tiny part of it in some water. The color will naturally drip into the water if you let the bag rest in it for up to ten minutes. If the bag is the type that would fade out, then all you have to do is clean the bag instead of actual washing.

Getting Set To Wash Your Bag

Now that you have determined whether to wash your canvas tote bag or to spot clean it, you want to make sure you are not washing your valuable items along with it. Empty the pockets, open all the clasps and zippers and shake off the bag so that whatever is in it will fall off. You would even find long-forgotten pieces of paper that still hold some usefulness. Pull out the inner lining of the bag and then begin removing all leftover dust. You can achieve this by using the fabric brush that comes with your vacuum. Check whether there are any instructions attached to the bag on how to clean it and make sure to follow those.

Try to remove all stains manually before you begin washing. This will help you to achieve the best results possible. You may need to use detergent to remove tough stains. Try a little of the product first on a small part of the canvas tote bag to be sure that it would not cause discoloration or burns. If the detergent does not have any adverse effects on the bag, you can go ahead to use it. Use a damp cloth to remove the stain instead of scrubbing it off so that you do not damage your bag.

You Can Now Wash Your Bag!

washing your canvas tote bag

When it comes to the actual washing of your canvas tote bag, you need to choose between machine washing and manual washing. For white canvas tote bags or other plain colors, machine washing would be just perfect. You could even use a cold water machine without incurring any serious consequences. However, you should not try machine washing for colored totes. Canvas tote bags with leather trimming, watercolor painted canvas tote bags, and canvas tote bags with adornment are better washed manually. You want to make sure that you do not damage the tote and the fabric with which it was made in the process. Here are a few tips to help you achieve that:

  1. Pour some water in a large bowl and dip your canvas tote bag into it.
  2. Remove the tote from the water and squeeze gently.
  3. Begin wiping manually in slow, careful motions while you stay away from touching any colored parts of the bag. Remember that any color can fade into the other parts of the bag.
  4. Pour some warm water in another bowl and dip the bag into it, leaving the canvas tote bag to soak the water. Before you do this, check the prints, patterns, and adornments to make sure that they cannot get easily damaged by the water.
  5. Check for stains and if there are still any, apply a detergent or some soap to the affected area using a clean damp cloth to scrub gently.
  6. Rinse and dry your bag.

You can do this by dipping the canvas tote bag in a bowl filled with water or by using a damp cloth.

Washing Your Canvas Tote Bag With a Machine

If your bag is white or is of a color that passes the fading test, then you can wash using a machine. Follow the instructions on the care label of your canvas tote bag if there are any. If your bag is one of the canvas tote bags with leather trimming or canvas tote bags with adornment, you may want to wash under cold temperature. Do not muddle your bag up with other items in the machine unless those items are canvas too. Put watercolor painted canvas tote bags and other colored items in the machine only if they would not fade out. Do not leave the bag in the machine for too long.

Your Next Steps

next step to drying your canvas tote bag

After you have properly cleaned the bag, it is time to dry it out. Air dry your canvas tote. Do not use a dryer or a machine as either of these can cause shrinkage and can also cause the bag to lose its aesthetic appeal. When the bag has totally dried out, store it away in an upright position so as not to disrupt its shape and mess up with its functionality. Do not store the bags inside one another or inside other bags to prevent mold from growing in them. You may want to stuff your bag with tissues if it is really shapely to preserve its look. Storing your bag away properly can determine how long you will be using it.

Although cleaning your canvas tote bag is not an activity that has to happen often, it is crucial that you clean the bag out properly when you do so. The steps that we have outlined above can help you achieve that faster and effortlessly too.


If you are yet to get your own canvas tote bag, we have a great collection that you can choose from. Check out our range of bags and get real-time help from our knowledgeable and friendly staff on how to care for your bag, how to store and any other issues.