Canvas tote bags

The canvas tote: how one size fits all.

"One size fits all" is something of a catchphrase, and while it's certainly fun to say it's not always accurate. However, there is a context in which that zingy sentence rings true, and it's the case of the classic medium canvas tote. We like to think of this all-American accessory as a kind of blank canvas capable of suiting the needs of solo travelers, fitness nuts and busy moms alike. That's why we're going to share the stories of some of our favorite (if fictional) canvas tote owners below.

Sharon, the constant traveler

From famous sights to unfamiliar wonders, Sharon's Instagram feed is a chronicle of constant wandering. While the settings change often—Mississippi this weekend, Mumbai the next—there's one constant that appears in every perfectly filtered photo: a medium canvas tote bag.

Unpredictability is the very nature of travel, which is why having a reliable travel bag crafted from water-resistant, 24-ounce cotton canvas can be a game-changer. Its shape allows it to accommodate a broad range of items, from DSLR cameras to folded maps, and its wide opening makes fishing through its varied contents easier.

As someone who relies on their medium canvas tote to carry precious items—like a passport—Sharon knows the importance of a safe seal. That's why she decided to give hers a secure zipper closure, which can keep its contents safe from crowded subway platforms to sun-baked Saharan dunes.

Rachel, the beach lover

You know the type: whenever there's even a chance of sunshine and the opportunity to take the day off, Rachel finds herself next to a beach blanket and a body of water. While the notion of being carefree is baked right into the beach going experience, it can be a little more difficult to get into the right head zone without the right supplies.

Fortunately, Rachel has her work cut out for her thanks to the canvas beach bag she carries along on every sandy excursion. Snacks, sunglasses sunblock, headphones, a good paperback novel and a change of clothes all fit neatly within her open-top canvas bag. She uses the outside pocket to store her sunblock; that way it's always on hand for a quick re-apply.

Holly, the workout queen

Sometimes it feels like Holly was born wearing yoga pants. She's most often seen zipping from one class to another—Barre on Tuesday, Pilates on Wednesday, hot yoga Thursday—in yoga pants and a tank top, her hair pulled back and her headphones in. One item she's never seen without is her medium canvas tote.

She loves it because it can carry everything she needs for her classes, from rolled-up yoga mats to small weights to water bottles and a quick change of clothes. She doesn't have to worry about her bag buckling under all of that gear, either. The 24-ounce cotton canvas tote is designed to carry up to 500 lbs. While Holly isn't remotely close to filling it with that much weight, she can use her medium canvas tote as a substitute bar bell for bicep curls.

Gwen, the super mom

For Gwen, time is always of the essence. What element could possibly be more precious when you're the mother of three boys? From a diaper bag for her youngest to a first-time catcher's mitt for her T-ball playing oldest, Gwen finds herself saddled with a what can feel like an entire army's worth of gear each time she leaves the house.

Fortunately, the medium canvas tote is there to pick up much of the slack. Because it can hold up to 500 lbs, she'll never have to worry about filling it to the point of strain. But knowing that she'll often have a considerable load of clothing, toys, and snacks to carry around, she opted for a long handle to make transporting all that kid gear just a little easier.

Jessica, the expert planner

The same vigilant attention to detail that saw Jessica rise to the higher rungs of the corporate latter have also made her an unequaled master at planning family trips. Whether the destination happens to be a just-opened theme park or a national park at peak season, there's no place too distant, no crowd too great, to stop Jessica from exploring with her family of four.

However, some of that credit does belong to her trusted medium canvas tote. Its water-resistant nature means that she can bring it rain or shine, and the wide felled seams that allow it to stand upright mean it can be left on the sidewalk or ground during a sudden planning huddle. Best of all, its single outside pockets and four interior pockets make organization easy. From theme park tickets to granola bars to bug spray, Jessica has a pocket assigned to whatever needs her latest expedition demands.

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