Feb 9, 2009

4 times Recycled - Pants to a Lunch Bag

A few weeks ago my daughter came home with the zipper that had broken out of her Camp Rock lunchbox. Since we only have 4 months left of school I didn't want to buy a new lunchbox - next best thing to make one. I asked her if I could make her a new one. One that would fit all the things she liked to take to lunch. She said it was OK with her.

First time recycled: I've already told you about my last recycle project with my son's pants. I add fabric at the bottom hem to give him some more time to wear them. He grows tall not wide so I'm always adding fabric to his pants midway through the school year.

Second time recycled: By the end of the school year I'm cutting off the pant legs to make shorts.

Third time recycled: I'm always saving fabric. When I cut the pant legs off to make shorts for the summertime I saved the legs and made pin cushions during last years summer camp. I made a bunch of them that I use all the time when I'm teaching. I'm real picky about people putting their pin's away somewhere in a catcher or a cushions.

Forth time recycled: Making a lunch bag out of the pants. I cut the inseam out of two pant legs. I used the bottom of the legs as the top of the bag. I had to cut some off each side because I didn't want to make it as wide on the sides as I did on the front.

I also held the seams together on the outside to run a stitch line down to make a better corner of the bag.

After I sewed both sides making a square I decided how big to make the bottom of the bag. I cut a square and with two right sides together pinned and sewed the bottom of the bag pivoting around the corners.

I took another pant leg and cut both side seams off. With two right sides together sew the sides and flip the flap. Sew one side of the Velcro to one side of the flap and the other side of the Velcro to the bag. Sew the flap to the top of the inside of the bag.

Pick a strap you want to use. My daughter went to my stash and pick an old belt (because I keep everything in my sewing supplies). I don't think I would have picked the brown and white strip belt for the strap - but - she liked it and that's all that matters. Pin and sew in the strap at the top of both sides of the bag. Set the bag aside while you cut and sew the liner.

Decide how big you want the liner. Cut a front and back with two sides and a bottom.

Sew both sides to the front then add the back to one side leaving one side open.

Pin and sew in the bottom of the square pivoting around each corner. Sew up the side of the bag you left open.

Find anything you can to put between the two layers of the fabric to make it stronger and stand up. I used the plastic with the holes in it - that you can find in the craft section of the store. I cut out the sizes I needed. Took some yarn to sew the edges together so they wouldn't move around in the bag. I dropped in down in the bag.

With two wrong sides together drop in the liner down in the back. Fold up the top edge of the fabric to finish the top edge of the liner fabric. Sew the liner to the top of the bag holding everything in place.

Add what ever you want to the outside of the bag. I added my daughters name to the back side. You could put any kind of patch, lettering, iron on transfer. It's all fun.

My daughter loves using her new lunch bag. It holds her water bottle where her old one didn't. It also holds all her plastic containers she likes to carry cut up fruit in. And it feels great to use fabric in 4 different recycle projects.

Until next time,
Enjoy your moments ~ make them "sew" much fun,


  1. That is a great way to recycle. You really got your money's worth from those pants.

  2. Great idea!!! I definitely need a lunch bag....now I just need find that lucky pair of pants :)