Crafting with Niki – Recycled Shopping Bag

highcountryparent_banner_HCP1703_AppUrgent_getwell

What mom (or wife) doesn’t have a drawer full of old t-shirts that her family never wears anymore? We let this sit around and collect dust until one day we toss them, yard sale them, or send them off to Ram’s Rack.  Now you have another option, turn them into shopping bags!

This project does require the use of a sewing machine, but you don’t have to have any sewing “talent”.  If you can turn your machine on and sew a (somewhat) straight line, then you can make your own shopping bags!

Step 1.  Collect your supplies. You will need a sewing machine (and thread), a t-shirt, a medium size bowl, sharp scissors, pins, and a marking pen.

Gather Materials for Shopping Bag

Gather Materials for Shopping Bag

Step 2. Turn your t-shirt inside out and pin the bottom edges together. Make sure your seams line up.

Pin Bottom Edge

Pin Bottom Edge

Step 3. Sew the bottom of your t-shirt together. You might want to reinforce this seam a few times.  I sewed mine three times, once with a straight stitch and then went over it twice with a zig zag stitch  I wanted to make sure my bag has a strong bottom.

Sew!

Sew!

Step 4.  Turn your t-shirt right side out and lay on a flat surface. Make sure your shoulder seams and side seams match up as best as possible.  Lay about half the bowl on top of the neckline of your shirt.  Trace this semi-circle onto the shirt.  Remove the bowl and cut out the neck along the line you just drew.

Trace Circle

Trace Circle

Cut out neck

Cut out neck

Step 5. Make sure the seams are still aligned, and cut off both sleeves. I cut mine just inside the seam.

Cut off Sleeves!

Cut off Sleeves!

Step 6.  Congratulations!  You just made your first recycled t-shirt bag. Now, wasn’t that easy!?!  These make great gifts too!  Perfect for Father’s Day coming up for the eco-conscious Grandpa or the hard-to-shop for husband!  You don’t even have to buy anything new, just use those shirts in his drawer that he loves.

Finished Shopping Bag

Finished Shopping Bag

My next task is to figure out a use for the sleeves…. any ideas?

Be sure to share the pictures of your t-shirt bags!

Happy Crafting!

Niki

Niki is a work-at-home-mom of two children, ages 3 and 1. She makes handcrafted items for children and moms. Niki’s Knacks can be found at http://nikisknacks.etsy.com.

About Sarah


Sarah Pinnix is a blogger, vlogger, new media marketing coach, and mom of three. Sarah began blogging in 2007 with Family Life & Faith blog Real Life Blog. She lives near Boone and works a social media specialist for a Non-Profit.


Comments

  1. AMAZING, Niki!!! What an awesome idea! This is a great first project for a child wanting to sew as well!! My kids love bags, too, and how fun would it be to get shirts they grow out of and make these for them!

  2. Perfect idea Sarah! I was thinking along those lines too! Or for a college student too! Use those high school t-shirts and turn them into shopping bags!

  3. Hmmm… could you sew a bunch of the sleeves together, tube fashion, then put some elastic in both top and bottom, and a loop on top to hang it from, making a plastic bag holder or rag bag?

  4. Great idea Carrie! Definitely would work!

  5. I can’t wait to try this! We have a million t-shirts that need a new purpose. By the way, I have used the sleeves before as a hair/headband to keep my hair out of my face when I run.