Most houses with growing kids will have a number of jeans that are past their prime. They are usually too short or too tight. There are some easy things you can make with these jeans. Infact, a lot of them but these are what I want to make and here they are.
Recylcing jeans into usable things
1. Make wardrobe organizer from old jeans
You can make a hangable organizer with pockets cut out from old jeans.
This organizer can be hung inside your wardrobe for extra storage which is easily accessible. Checkout this post for wardrobe organizing ideas.
Cut out the pockets close to the sides.
Leave a little extra at the top ( to attach to the base fabric)
Choose a base fabric. It needs to have some weight like an upholstery fabric or use denim itself. Sew the side edges and top and bottom edges.
Arrange the pockets on the base fabric in the way you want. Sew the pockets in place. Make 2 loops for the top and keep the hanger inside the loop and stitch in place.
2. Turn denim scraps into patchwork fabric
If you have small pieces of usable denim fabric leftover from other projects you can use it to make your own fabric.
I have cut out fabric pieces of the same size in contrast colours.
Cut out fabric pieces in a particular size or shape- join them to each other in columns.
Join these columns together.
Check out this post on different ways to sew the scrap fabric pieces together to make fabric
I made a boxy pouch with the fabric. You can check out the tutorial to make a boxy pouch with the fabric here.
Get fabric to make kids dresses from old jeans
You can cut fabric from the leg of jeans for making kids bodices /dresses. Join the legs in the way shown below so that you get enough fabric.
3. Reuse denim jeans into a bag
If you have kid’s jeans with embroidery on the leg part, you can preserve the nice embroidery and make a nice bag.
Cut out the 2 leg parts.
If the embroidery is on the front part (which it usually is) you have to keep them together and sew so that the embroidery appears on the front of your bag together.
Cut open the leg and join the leg pieces together to bring together the embroidery part – I just kept the flat seam on top of the other edge and top stitch. You can also cut off the seam and join together as a normal seam.
Join the back seams together to form a tube. The bottom hem is used as the top edge of the bag.
Join the bottom edge. Make a flat bottom for the bag by sewing the corner. Check out this post on making a totebag for instructions to do this.
Attach handles and you have a nice little bag. Check out this post on making bag handles and different kinds of bag handles for ideas for making bag handles. Or just use webbing or faux leather pieces as I have done.
Good for taking out to the library; if only I could. 🙁
You can make a lining bag in a similar size and insert into this bag. Add a pocket or two inside, attach a snap button on top etc.
Here is a post with more (3) tutorials on making bags from old jeans.
Check out this post – to see how to make a sling bag from old jeans.
4. Recycle Jeans into a simple fabric basket
A very simple DIY – make the easiest organizer for your table with a part of your old jeans. A very simple method of organising small things.
Cut out the leg bottom edge and sew the bottom edge.
Sew the corners inside to make the bottom part flat.
This is how the flat bottom will look.
Turn the bag rightside outside.
Bring the top edge down and your organiser is ready to be filled.
5. Recycled jeans into shorts
If you have a jeans that fit you right but do not want it as a jeans anymore, you can turn it into cut off shorts which is forever in fashion. Check out the post on 7 ways of making shorts from jeans.
Cut out the front crotch portion by the middle – without cutting out the belt part. You need the front fly and the zipper cut off.
Cut the back crotch – do not cut off the seam (see the picture above); you can overlap the seam of the crotch and top stitch it there.
Sew the hem and side edges.
Attach straps at the back and tie at the back. You have a half apron with minimal work – with ready made pockets for all the tools. You can find more apron patterns and a tutorial for making a simple apron here.
7. Turn jeans pocket into a mobile charger holder
If you have a phone and you have to charge it everyday and you do not have a dedicated charging station, you know the difficulty. Those wires trailing down and your phone lying on you do not even know where or who is stepping on it. Trouble all around. An old jeans is a solution to this problem.
A mobile phone charger holder is even better if your socket is up there somewhere where you cannot keep the phone anywhere.
Cut out a pocket from your jeans from the belt.
Make a long cut along the top part over the pocket. (A thin cut is enough; when you hang the holder over the plug it will automatically become bigger)
As one reader helpfully pointed out in the comments, be careful when using this if your plug is over heating – may cause fire ; Denim is hard wearing but it is still fabric so keep and eye on it when using.
8. Make potholders /coasters with old jeans scraps
Denim is thick and it is the best fabric for making potholders. You can find tutorials to make potholders here.
A similar make is a coaster. You can check out the tutorial to make coasters here.
9. Jeans Earring
Cut out small denim pieces from jeans and attach to fishhook earring wires.
I attached a small gold stud to join the two circles (1 1/2″ and 1″) together and then attached it at the top to a fishhook wire. You can cut out diamond shapes, triangles and other interesting shapes.
10. Turn jeans to skirts
You can check out the tutorials for turning your jeans into skirts here.
If your jeans are in need of some small repair work to make it new again, do not hesitate and wear it till you absolutely can’t before you recycle it ; Here are the posts for some DIY alterations – Jeans repair – 7 scenarios; Alter tight jeans; Jeans button replacement ; How to shorten jeans hem