Does the start of the school year have you itching to make something new? If so, then you may love today’s post. I’ve scoured the web to find more than 20 cute things to make for Back to School.
Many of these items make fantastic Teacher Appreciation Gifts as well! If you like this post, then you may also like these 25 Halloween Sewing Project Ideas.
Every year it seems like summer flies by. I always have mixed feelings when it comes to the first day of school. On the one hand, I love the schedule-free days and the opportunity to “lay around” the house all day. On the other hand, after a few days of “laying around the house,” my kids tend to get a bit ornery, and I’m faced with trying to find things for us to do.
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20+ DIY Back to School Projects
Either way, I love “back-to-school season.” I love walking into Target and seeing the stacks of pencils and crayons. I love the anticipation of a new year with its new challenges.
When I was in college, I loved the day that I’d go to the bookstore and pick up my books for the year (I didn’t love the bill so much, but I loved rifling through all the books at the BYU bookstore).
If the back-to-school season has you itching to make something, today, I’ve rounded up more than 20 projects that perfectly embody the spirit that comes with this time of the year.
This article has been updated from a previous version to include some of our newest crafts projects & sewing tutorials.
Pencil Pouch Sewing Patterns & Tutorials
This simple Oilcloth pencil pouch is SO easy to stitch that you don’t even need to line it! Just use a rotary cutter to finish off the edges!
Have a student who loves to doodle? Make them their own chalk cloth pencil pouch, and they can doodle the day away.
This pouch uses just a bit of chalk cloth, so you can customize it as you like. Add a name or a fun “word of the day” to the front.
In this tutorial, I walk you through the basics of creating a zip pouch. The tutorial includes instructions and tips to create a zip pouch in any size that you’d like. There’s even a video to help you along the way.
This pencil pouch is so simple to stitch up! Let your kids personalize it with their favorite fabrics.
DIY Notebooks & Bookmarks
Dress up a set of plain notebooks with a bit of fabric and applique! It makes taking notes so much more fun!
These cute bookmarks are a great way to use up your bin of fabric scraps!
This bookmark is sewn onto a large elastic, which helps it to stay in place, so you won’t lose your spot when you’re reading.
You can get much simpler than these cute bookmarks! Alicia uses a Cricut machine to save time in the construction process.
Reading & Book Pillows
11. Study Pillow:
Know a kid who loves to tote their homework with them all over the house? Make them a handy study pillow so they can stash their stuff easily. This project is from my book, Project Teen.
I have another version of the pattern for sale in my shop.
When I first designed this pattern over 11 years ago, I had no idea how popular it would become!
These fun reading pillows would be great for a “new” reader and make wonderful gifts! They are one of the most popular projects on this site! You can find a PDF version of this in the shop. The pattern has instructions to make the pillow in two different sizes.
Lunch Box and Book Bag Patterns
Another CUTE lunch tote sewing pattern! I love that this one has lots of room for yummy treats!
14. Drawstring Backpack:
If your little ones aren’t quite ready for a large backpack, this simple drawstring bag may be just right!
This simple tote bag may be just what your teen needs to take with them to class! They also make great library bags.
The stripes on these cute zip pouches are made with fabric. Create them to match your Hogwarts House! If you’re not a Harry Potter fan, these are also cute made from your school colors. Many schools also sell iron on patches as well.
Help encourage kids to keep track of their Library books with this cute tote bag. It’s a beginner-level sewing project. This pattern is straightforward to construct.
This duffle bag pattern comes in 3 different sizes. They are great bags for kids to tote with them to all of their after-school activities, from dance class to sports! Making it easy for you to pick the size that’s just right for your kid’s needs.
Cute Quilts to Make for Back to School
The fun primary colors in this quilt make it perfect for Back to School!
This fun quilt can be made in a variety of colors. It’s the perfect size to use for a bit of backyard reading!
Back to School Crafts
22. Shark Pencil Pouch:
Make every week Shark with this fun DIY Shark Pencil Pouch.
Cover a simple composition notebook with one of our specially designed papers inspired by some of my favorite Disney movies.
If you’re disappointed that you’re merely a Muggle headed back to school, you can whip up a set of these pencil pouches with a bit of Iron-On Vinyl and channel your “inner wizard.” There is a free SVG file to create the pouches on our blog.
Pretend you’re going back to school at Hogwarts with these Harry Potter Inspired Pencil Pouches and these Hogwarts House Notebook Covers!
25. Ruler Wreath:
This Ruler Wreath is a fun way to celebrate back to school at your house, and it’s crazy easy to make!
Fancy up some simple composition notebooks with your kid’s favorite characters!
27. Pointillism Notebook: This notebook is so simple, but the impact is nothing but!
These DIY Back to School or “Back to Snooze” t-shirts are such a cute idea for teens and tweens! Click through to even a cut file to make your own!
Back to School Organization DIYs
At least “attempt” to stay organized this year with this DIY memo board and Back to School Homework Station! You know what they say “A place for everything and everything in its place!”
A few years ago, I got tired of always searching for pencils and erasers for homework time. So I created a homework station and afterward wondered why I never thought of it before.
Teacher Gift Ideas
If you’re looking for something fun to make for a teacher, they might like one of these easy fabric banners! They are great classroom door decorations! They require a bit of sewing but are made from a 5″ stack of fabric, so there is minimal cutting.
These little chapstick holders are easy to make and can easily be attached to a teacher’s lanyard.