Don’t know what to do with those old jeans? A good idea is to make a useful accessory — a handbag. This is one of the most popular ways of recycling this season: blue jean handbags. They are cute, your friends will love them, and you can carry them all year long. With this easy version, you won’t even have to sew!
Instructions to Start (with and without Sewing Machine) - Cut a 2-inch strip of fabric, on the fold, for the bag's sash/belt. (Folded, it will be 1 inch to measure, then cut.) Open and press flat. Take a measured piece of stitch witchery and place at all ends. Fold up lengthwise ends first, steam press 1/2-inch finished edging, then sides. Once that is done, fold and match edges, wrong sides inside. Using stitch witchery again, fold finished edge strip and steam press closed on all ends. You should see a clean finished belt.
For the shoulder strap, repeat for the next 2-inch strip, cutting from coordinating fabric. Lay aside finished strips.
Cut the jeans 1 inch below the crotch seam, across the legs. Cut the crotch seam open. Turn jeans inside out. Sew a 1-inch seam at the bottom opening. This will be the bottom of your bag. Once you have sewn the seam, press the seam open and turn the jeans right-side out.
For those without a sewing machine: Use the instructions above, but instead of sewing the seam together, use your stitch witchery, apply a double layer to the jeans, as denim is a heavy fabric, and steam press closed. Use your needle and thread to work a blanket stitch over the seam. (If you don't want the stitching to show, use the lace trim to hide it.)
Optional lace can be placed on the side and bottom seams at this time, using stitch witchery and pressing the lace on. At this point, take the patch and cut pieces of stitch witchery to place on the back of the patch to adhere it to opening of a pocket, either side.
Apply the D-rings to belt loops on each side of the jeans, at the waist. These will hold the fabric for the shoulder strap. Apply the snaps on the inside of the waistband. Use as many as needed to ensure the bag will close securely.
Fold the shoulder strap in half. Measure from your shoulder to the point where you want the bag to hang. Mark the strap with chalk or pin it to mark the length it will be.
Run the strap through both D-rings, which are attached to loops on the waistband, and bring the ends upward to the shoulder. Tie where marked. Adjust the shoulder strap until the bag sits where you want it.
Add buttons by hand for embellishment. Optional: Add lace trim under the waistband.