Friday, 7 December 2007

Recycled jeans

Clearing out my sewing room had the desired effect. I felt the pull of the sewing machine and spent a couple of hours converting an old pair of jeans into a bag!

I cut off the legs, then cut up the curve of the crotch seam a little way so that it will lie flat. Then I just sew across the opening.

I make a rough estimate of how big the lining needs to be and cut two rectangles of fabric - the important thing is for the top edge to be at least as wide as the waistband of the jeans, if not a little bigger. Too small and you're in trouble!

Sew the lining pieces together, put them inside the jean bag, and handsew around the top edges (I tried machine sewing the lining in once before, but denim is thick and you have the belt loops as hurdles too). The beauty is that you don't need to neaten off your seams as they are all enclosed.

The handle was a bit of an afterthought ... it was obvious from the mistakes I made in the process of making this bag that my skills are rusty. Ideally, the ends of the handles would have been hidden between the denim and the lining, but I added them on afterwards so I handsewed them on the outside.

As a little extra, I made a small bag from a pocket cut from a different pair of jeans. I liked that this pocket had a button down flap, so I cut around it, leaving about an inch of denim, then backed it with the lining fabric.

Do you have any more ideas of what I could make from that big pile of jeans?

I made this quilt a few years ago - I even incorporated a patch with a pocket in it that can hold a remote control!


Anonymous said...

I have a wonderful denim book cover that I bought at Value Village (someone did a beautiful job sewing it). It is nice to be able to read a book at one of my kids' many appointments without everyone in the office knowing what I am reading.... not that I read anything WILD(??), but sometimes they are personal :)
Just a thought....
Rebecca :)

Heather said...

Wow Nicola, you've been busy. Makes me think I should get my room organized too. Love the fabric you used for the lining.

Now, do you want to know as much as I want to, what Rebecca is reading? I'm thinking we should go to her for book suggestions.

this is my patch said...

Hi Nicola, these jeans bags were popular when I was a young teen back in the mid 1970s, it is great and reminds me of how great it was growing up. They were all the rage in the teen magazines, the cover girl and the girl in the photo story would always be carrying one of these. I enlarged your photo to look at the lining, I love the fabric. One of your best creations to date. x