Fourth Grade Artists Compilation Collage Quilted Tote Bag

For the last 4 years or so, my art teacher friend has had an art “auction” at 4-6 grade Spring Concert where we pick about 35-40 pieces of student art, frame it, and sell it for $7. It’s a great fundraiser that has become quite popular! Last year, we thought we’d try an actual auction item, and I made this mini quilt with sixth grade art. It was a pretty good success and brought us almost $100 (one parent bought almost $30 in tickets!).

We live in a pretty poor area and many families in the district struggle financially. I did’t think that a mini quilt would be the type of item that would bring as much interest as a tote bag, so my friend agreed I could make a tote bag.

We decided to use 4th grade art this year, and a specific project in particular. I’m drawing a blank on the artist/style she based this lesson on, but these pieces always looks so pretty in the hallway.

When I made the mini quilt last year, I took pictures, put them in a collage, and had Spoonflower print out swatches that I cut and used. This year, I agreed to try printing the pictures from my home computer (we have a new printer that works better). I took the pictures and put them in even fancier collages on my phone. I ended up printing out 6 sheets of collage art.


Each side of the bag had 3 collages, 2 were similar and one was different in design. I cut the different design in half and sewed back to each side so it would be the length of the other two.

Each side was blocked in with black so I could sew the seams together without covering up too much of the artwork.

Once the front is pieced, I quilted three lines to cotton batting and then sewed it together, giving it boxed edges.

I love the fabric I used for the lining. I chose it because my friend and I love the color, and it really pops with the artist colors!

Each side was a 17" square before sewing together. I used art from 24 different 4th grade artists. Every artist has their work shown at least 2 times. I tried to get the majority of students to have their art “large” at least one time, but there are a few that are not.

You all get to see it before my friend! I hope she loves it, and I hope it brings in some money for the art program!

Thanks for looking!


This is so wonderful on so many levels! Great tutorial, too!!!


The fact that you got so many pieces representing the kids will make them proud…there is some talent there and authenticity that only a child has…but, what you did with the art is fabulous…made something beautiful and useful…I hope it auctions off well…

Love that you used black to set off the vibrant colors…and the lining is just wonderful, too…

So, you actually did the printing yourself with a color printer?


Thank you.

Yes, I did. I bought some of that printing fabric at Hobby Lobby and it worked better than I imagined.

Yes, I almost went with straight black, but then I saw the black with specks of blue dots and it was much more exciting!


This is so fabulous! I love it, I think it’s going to be a big hit.


Definitely honored to see this before your friend. This is beyond stellar on every level. Truly a gift from the heart, and that artwork is fabulous. The kids are to be commended for their creativity, and you for taking the time to design this tote from scratch, print the fabric, and assemble it. Big heart :heart_decoration::green_heart::heart_decoration::thread::heart_decoration::green_heart::heart_decoration:


I love hearing how you are putting your talent and love to work to help raise money for a great cause. You’re a rock star!!



Really beautiful way to showcase all the kids’ work!!


This is a really awesome project! What a great way to showcase kids’ art :smile:


Great idea and wonderful job … I hope it goes for a good amount.


What a great and functional way to display the student art! Your corresponding fabrics go with it very nicely. I like how the interior is suitably ‘arty,’ it looks like it’s hand painted!


This is SO COOL! What an awesome and unique way to showcase art!! I love it! Good luck with the auction. Your friend is lucky to have your support!


I gave it to my friend today and she loved it! Now to wait for May to auction it.

Our principal will probably be retiring soon, so we’ve been brainstorming ideas for her, too, and we decided to make a bag similar to this for her–but with much more art represented!


I’d love to be a fly on the wall during this auction and watch the activity on this bag filled with the kids’ art. Please let us know how things turned out and what you all present to the retiring principal. Such awesome donations and such wonderful people behind it all!

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