Saturday, February 9, 2013

Upcycling Denim

I’ve seen some great creations out of upcycled denim clothing (check out these Etsy creations or these on my Denim Pinterest board) and I wanted to try it out for myself.  My daughter had a pair of jeans with an awkward cut in the upper thigh. 
Kids manage to ruin things in the most interesting ways, right?
I tried to figure out a way to sew or patch it but I didn’t like any of those options so I decided to cut up the jeans and see what I could make from the material.  Here’s what hapened.
I decided to use the top of the jeans at the waistband for a skirt so I first removed the back pockets and cut the top 6 inches off the pants. 

Back pockets removed.  I love my seem ripper!

I want to keep the front pockets intact, so I trimmed them from the side so I could cut the length I wanted and preserve the pockets.  I'll sew the pockets together later.

I then cut the bottom 14 inches off both legs to make 2 bags.  I reattached the pockets to the lower legs and cut the seams out of the upper leg sections to use as bag straps. This is my favorite part.  I cut the seams with about ¼ inch fabric on either side of the seam and pulled out the vertical thread to leave the fringed edge.  It looks cute and it won’t fray any further now. 

Bottoms cut off and pockets prepared to sew on

Seems plus some adjacent material removed from upper leg portion.

Blue vertical threads removed leaving white fringe.
This will be the bag's handle.  Cute right?

To finish the bag, I just sewed the bottom of the pants together to make the base of the bag and then hemmed the top edge and added the strap.  I added a button and button hole too for a closure.  All done! 

I couldn’t stop there.  In the end, out of 1 pair of girls size 7 pants, I have already made 2 bags, a flower clip, a jar lid, a couple of bracelets and a mug rug. 

I’m even selling some of these items on my Etsy shop, Inspired Sensibility.   I didn’t finish the skirt yet but that may be a future post!

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