September 8, 2012

Re-purposed Jeans Tote

First let me just say, I've a sort of bag problem. The definition of bag problem is 'when you can't seem to find any decent bags that fits your purpose'. No matter, what I buy, it's either too big or too small. It will have lots of pockets or none at all. So I practically gave up buying bags ( which is a miracle itself).

But the real problem started when I was in grad school. Everyday I had to carry this ginormous backpack with my 7 pound laptop, notebooks, binders and food. Being only 4'11", I looked like giant lopsided mushroom in the morning. Then when I had to run in the campus for classes, carrying the backpack was no fun. I was looking for a tote to carry stuff to classes, but every tote looks gigantic on me. Then one day, it hit me, why don't I make a tote myself, which is just enough big to carry a binder (or a notebook) and some essential stuff? But I also wanted to carry just my laptop now and then, so I planned to make something out of a sturdy material. After rampaging through our old jeans box and cutting up an old dress, behold, my new tote was born!

Repurposed Jeans Tote
Since I had to have enough material to carry binders, I had to sew different jeans together. I chose two different toned jeans and cut open their legs. Then I sow them alternating, resembling a quilt pattern. For the inner shell/lining I used one of my old dresses. It wasn't particularly my favorite, but I thought it went pretty well with the denim.

printed inner shell
I also used up the trim from the hem. I just cut up a big piece along the hem with the trim and sow it on the shell to make it a pocket. It was perfect!

pocket with trim
Lastly, I wanted to create some tie to close the wide mouth. The dress came in to the rescue again. It had some ties already! All I did was cut them to my desired length. Then I made two tiny button holes on the top of the bag on both sides. Then the ties were threaded in and I made a knot to hold them in place. And voila!

printed ties
It does look quite cute when I tie them in a bow.


Have you ever made any totes from re-purposed materials? Do share!

Have something to add? Please do share!

I love to read your comments. If you want to hear back from me, don't forget to click the 'Notify me' box, when you are done. Otherwise, don't forget to check back.