Get Crafty: Turn an Old T-Shirt Into a Stylish Bag

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June 19, 2013

I always seem to have an abundance of old t-shirts lying around my house. Whether it is a shirt with an impenetrable stain, snag, or just a dated look, I can never bring myself to throw them out. Fortunately for me, I found a great way to repurpose these old shirts into something that I will actually use: a bag. The great thing about these tee shirts turned bag, is that they really are multipurpose. You can make a bag for carrying library books, produce, or to coordinate with an outfit.

I made two versions of this bag and neither required sewing. I am sewing inept. I can’t do it and refuse to learn, so no-sew projects are a must. All this project requires is a pair of scissors and an old shirt, absolutely nothing else. How do I do this magic you may wonder? Here are the simple steps required to creating a stylish new bag from your old ragged tees.

A No Sew Tee Shirt Handbag

What you need:

  • Scissors
  • Old Shirt


Lay your t-shirt on a flat surface. Cut off the sleeves  – the straighter the better, but honestly uneven is okay. Next cut the neckline off the shirt. You can cut it in a squared off fashion or rounded depending on how you want the opening of the bag to look. I chose to go with a rounded look on my bags. Just cut off about an inch past the seamed area of the neckline. The deeper the hole, the bigger the opening will be on the bag. The result will be a deep-cut tank top.

Next simply cut inch long slits into the bottom of the bag. The slits should be about an inch in length and an inch apart. Using a ruler for this part can be helpful, but not necessary. After you have your slits cut you will simply tie the bottom slit areas. This will create a tasseled look at the bottom of the bag. The longer the slits the longer the tassels.

Now give your bag a good stretch and it is ready to go.

Produce Bag Version

I made a second bag with a more mesh look to it. Many produce bags have holes throughout to allow for more expansion in the bag. This is great if you have a bag that is exceptionally stained or torn. You can then incorporate those tears and stains and make it look purposeful. Simply follow the instructions above and then fold the shirt into fourths across the width of the shirt. Make a few cuts in each side and unfold. Now you have a bag with multiple holes throughout. Wash the bag and it is ready to go.

A great photo tutorial for this project  is provided by instructables here.

What is your favorite repurposing project?

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