March 20, 2010

Making a Bag out of a T-shirt

This is an old post.  I have noticed how many people are intrigued by these bags when I bring them to stores, so I thought I’d repost to show how simple they are to make.

Start to finish this project will take no more than 10 minutes.  I usually can manage to complete on bag in less than 5 minutes.  Since it is such a simple project, you might want to make more than one at a time to make it worth your while to pull out your supplies. I love this project because you are able to use old t-shirts for something other than cleaning rags.  Another added bonus?  Target stores and some other stores will give you a discount on your order for bringing your own shopping bags.  Cha-ching!

Step One—Pick out an old t-shirt.  This should be pretty easy for all of us to do.  I have chosen to use old t-shirts with stains on them, but you could use t-shirts with logos if you prefer.  I would stick with shirts smaller than a large.  When I made one out of an XL shirt that I had been given, I found that it was a little bulky.

Step Two—Turn the t-shirt inside out and sew the bottom closed.  So that the seam is sturdy, use either a crisscross stitch or make two lines of stitches a quarter inch apart.  If you are lucky enough to have a surger, then by all means use it. 

You might want to cut the  two outer corners so that when you turn it right side out the corners will be square.  Do you see how the corner on the left and the corner on the right are at right angles?  You would simply cut that bottom corner off without cutting through the seam you just sewed.  If that does not make sense, then do not worry about this step.  It is not necessary for the finished product to be functional.

DSC_1104Step Three—Remove the sleeves from the t-shirt.  You can either cut the seam of the sleeve where it attaches to the bodice or leave it intact.  It depends on the size of the arm hole that you would like. Scissors work best for this task. 


Step Four—Make the hole where your head would go through deeper so that you can fit groceries and other items in the bag.  You can use a template for doing this, but I never go to that much trouble.  I have found that if you use a rotary cutter (one that a quilter might have), it makes this job look a little neater.  If you do not have a rotary cutter, then scissors will work just fine. 

DSC_1107Step Five—If you really want to get fancy, you could finish the edges.  I have not had a problem with them fraying, and therefore I never go to the trouble.  Turn the t-shirt right side out, and you are ready to use it.   


  1. Wonderful! I have enough shirts to supply bags for all of blount county!! jajajajajajaja!!