We have so many old t-shirts that either don't fit or we've just moved on to new styles, so instead of getting rid of them we decided to pull a few out of the Goodwill pile and make some easy NO SEW tote bags. We are always in need of extra bags for the grocery store, to carry all the endless kid stuff we acquire, etc., so why not DIY and repurpose some of your fav old t-shirts. Read on for the easy step by step guide. All you need is a cool shirt and a pair of scissors. Easy right?
Scissors (fabric scissors preferably)
Sharpie or fabric marker
STEP ONE - CUT THE SLEEVES
Take your t-shirt and lie it on a table. The size of the shirt is totally up to you. A large Mens shirt will make a large bag and a small shirt will make a smaller tote. Also note that the thicker the material of the shirt the better. If it's thinner material, that's fine, just know that it will stretch once you put stuff in it. Next cut the sleeves along the seam.
STEP TWO - Cut the neckline
Now it's time to cut the opening of the bag. We will use the neckline as a guideline for this. Take a medium size bowl and place it so that the top of the shirt is about half way between the bowl - see photo below. Use a pen and trace around the bowl, then cut along the line. If you want a bigger whole you can draw the guideline a little bigger. It's up to you.
STEP THREE - Measure depth for Bag
Next turn the shirt inside out to do the rest of the work. Measure how deep you want your tote to be. You can eye it or take an object you may be carrying in the bag and place to see where you want to tie your bag. With a ruler or by eye draw a straight line from one side of the shirt to the other. Because I wanted this bag to be a a little smaller I cut off excess fabric from the bottom.
STEP FOUR - MARK AND cut fringe
Next with your pen, mark vertical lines from the bottom of the shirt to your horizontal line, leaving about an inch in between lines. With your scissors, cut the lines to create the fringe. Make sure to cut the end pieces on the shirt seam so that they are separate pieces.
STEP FIVE - tie fringe pieces together
Now it's time to tie up the fringe. First tie each individual set into a knot. Once you are done doing the whole fringe go back to the beginning since we need to tie up some more to not leave any holes. Take the second set of fringe that was tied and take one of the two pieces and tie it with a piece of fringe from the left side, then take the other middle piece and tie it with a piece from the right side. Do that for the remaining pieces. This will close up any holes. It's good to double tie as well because you want the bottom of the bag to be sturdy.
STEP SIX - turn bag right side out
Turn the bag inside out and voila you have yourself a DIY tote bag. At this point you can go and clean up the cutting at the arms and the neckline. You can give it a little more style and cut the shoulder straps and tie them into knots for some extra flair.
Now there you have it. An easy way to repurpose t-shirts into something useable for the entire family. Now pack it up with a picnic and take the family out to the park or beach and enjoy some family time!