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Upcycling!

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May 4, 2017 by Polarn O. Pyret

Taking good care of our clothes is one of the best things we can all do for the environment. Always follow the washing instructions, mend whatever can be repaired and pass any garment a child has outgrown on to a new owner. You can also transform any worn-out garment into something new, which is called upcycling or creative reuse. A top can be upcycled into a gym bag and mittens into sweatbands. Just use your imagination.

GYM BAG FROM A TANK TOP
An old top can be upcycled into a really great gym bag. Why not personalize your gym bag with fun cords and appliqué details?

YOU NEED:
– Sewing machine
– Thread
– Scissors
– Seam Stripper
– T-shirt
– Cord

THIS IS WHAT YOU NEED:
1. Cut straight across the t-shirt from under one sleeve to the other.

2. Unpick about 4 cm of the t-shirt’s upper side seams. Also unpick roughly the same amount along the t-shirt’s lower side seams.

3. Sew zigzag stitches along the cut edges so the fabric doesn’t fray.

4. Turn the fabric inside out. Fold down your zigzag edge so you get a border of about 3 cm on both front and back. Pin along the edge. You will need an opening in each side to thread the cord through later.

5. Sew a seam along the zigzag edge.

6. Pin and then sew the lower edges together. This edge will be the bottom of the gym bag. You will also need two openings on each side here (as you previously unpicked the sides of lower edges), because the cord will also be threaded through here.

7. Now cut two lengths of cord. Measure carefully so the cords are as long as you want them for the bag to be comfortable to carry.

8. Thread one piece of cord through the border on the front and one through the border on the back.

9. Turn the bag the right way out.

10. Take the ends of the cords and thread in the openings at the bottom. Left ends in the left opening and right ends in the right opening.

11. Turn the bag inside out again and sew the cords to the openings using the seam allowance left over from when the fabric was a t-shirt.

12. Turn the bag right side out and start using!

CLICK HERE to see other upcycling ideas.


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