Hey friends! Today is Reduce, Reuse, REFASHION time where the last Tuesday of each month I share a fun way to upcycle, reuse, repurpose items into fashion, home decor and more. Today, I’m all about those old jeans and giving them a new life as an upcycled denim pocket purse.
These are a pair of my husband’s old jeans with holes in the seat. Don’t ask me how those got there? ahem. However, instead of chucking them into the trash, there is a whole lotta fabric that still has perfect upcycling purpose.
While I could give you limitless options how to use it all, I’m going to only focus on utilizing those pockets today. Again, the options are limitless to how you can tweak out a cute little purse.
For fun and ease of teaching, I’ve created a video tutorial for you below. However, if you prefer written instructions, I have those for you here as well.
I’m tellin’ ya these are so easy to put together that your kids and your aged family will have fun joining you. Just think how fun it is to make a gift out of a loved one’s clothing…a sweet gift to cherish.
Ready to get started? Here’s what you’ll need:
- pair of jean (or any pants) pockets
- coordinating thread
- zipper the size of the pocket top edge (approx. 6″, depending on pocket)
- scrap fabric or leather for strap
- zipper pull, fringe, beads, etc.
- hook hardware for belt-loop purse design, if preferred
- sewing machine with zipper foot (usually included with machine) and denim or heavy duty needle
- fabric scissors
- snips (optional, but oh so handy)
- sewing pins
First, you’ll want to cut out the pocket by trimming as close to the edges as possible. We will tweak it once it’s out, so need to be super neat.
Once pocket is removed, take your snips (or scissors) and trim the edges as shown.
Then, remove the back side of the pocket. Save that for later as it will make a perfect coin purse (see video demo).
Next, grab the appropriate length zipper and your pocket pieces. Your zipper can be longer than the pocket, even largely so, but just not smaller. Place the pockets and zipper face up on a flat surface.
Leave enough room around the zipper teeth for the zipper head to be able to pass by. Pin and then stitch down one side of the pocket to the zipper using your zipper foot. You can use coordinating or contrasting thread – that’s up to you. I like to play it by ear.
If I’m trying to hide my stitches, I “stitch in the ditch” by going over the existing stitches. Sometimes I want a color contrast so I create a totally new pass. Repeat by attaching the other pocket side in the same manner
In this step (or in the previous step) you can add embellishments to your pockets. Have fun with it! Embroider, add buttons, paint a design, add a patch…you get the idea.
I even grabbed these fun thrifted scarves so I could take off the fringe to make fun additions to my purses. No worries, I removed it and then stitched the ends so my kids could use the scarves still. We have dress-up box of scarves they have a blast using for pretend play.
Last, we want to stitch our purse closed. You can use pins or sewing clips to hold it all together. It’s at this time you can add whatever hardware you choose to use: belt-loop hooks, D-rings for a strap, or just add a wristlet to the zipper. (see video or finished photos for reference) Stitch along the seams making sure to reinforce where hardware is added.
Here are my finished upcycled denim pocket purses all ready to go in their different styles.
These were so fun to make. Can you tell I had a blast giving them their each own bit of flair. Which one is your favorite?
As for colors, I’m loving them all. However, as for the design, the belt-loop are my choice. As the norm, I don’t like to carry a purse and really only do during the summer months. So, the fact that this purse is able to attach to my clothing is super handy (& super cute!).
While I’ve kept my instructions to the bare minimum, I’m always eager to help, so feel free to ask my any questions.
If you’re interested in any of my purses, you can find them and much more available in my online shop.
Also, pin and share my upcycled denim pocket purse fun to inspire others to give DIY a try. It’s fun, frugal, and fashionable. 🙂
Up next, I’ll be taking this primitive bin and then reviving it with some vintage style. See the new look HERE.