Friday, June 3, 2011

Another DIY Quickie - and who doesn't love a quickie?

If your habits are anything like mine you have a plethora of ugly fabric shopping bags hanging around the backdoor of your house.  I'm always picking up re-usable bags, but they are often not very attractive and tend to get left behind places after a few uses. This DIY will solve that problem.   I also have a few drawers of old t-shirts that I can't/don't wear anymore, but I'm emotionally attached to them and can't throw them away or tear them up to use as rags.  Today's DIY will also solve that problem.  Two problems, one DIY.  Perfect.
My T-shirt and shopping bag ready for transformation.
Supplies Needed:
-one T-shirt with a cool image.  This is a great way to salvage old shirts that no longer fit or are otherwise unwearable.
-one reusable cloth bag
-needle and thread or sewing machine
-measuring tape or ruler - or you can just wing it

Difficulty level - This project is suitable for all sewers from beginner on up.

Step one: Measure the logo that needs to be covered.
Step two: Measure the image on the t-shirt.  This image just happens to be my friend Dave Stewart  who writes a monthly graphic movie review.

Step three: Cut the T-shirt image large enough to cover the logo on the bag.

Step three point five: Pin the logo to the bag:

The awesome thing about working with t-shirts is that they are knits which means...they don't fray!  You don't have to worry about folding your edges under - unless you really want to.

Step four: Sew it on.  You can do this with a machine or by hand.  It's a pretty fast sew so I usually do mine by hand.  A nice watching TV but still feeling like I'm accomplishing something sort of  project.  Maybe you could do it while watching an old horror flick - I think Dave would approve.

Here's a little trick of mine (and anyone who sews regularly).
Don't worry, I cut that ugly tag off.
Start sewing between your layers, this way the extra thread is sandwiched between t-shirt and bag never to be seen.  Clever non?
Somehow I neglected to take an actual sewing picture.  I left about a cm of t-shirt overhang around the edge. If you feel like showing off your skills use a contrasting thread color, or try an interesting stitch.

After you've stitched around all four sides of the t-shirt just tie off your thread and presto an awesome new bag that's actually attractive and that you won't be tempted to leave behind every time you take something somewhere.

Ta da!  A much better bag.

Dave's T-shirts had the name of his column/comic(what do I call it?) on the back, so I added it to the back of my bag too.


I'd like to thank Dave for his un-knowing participation in this post.  Dave, if you'd like to come by the store some time I have a token of my gratitude for you.  It may or may not be a grocery bag with your cartoon likeness on it.  And for the rest of you, thanks for playing along.  I know my next trip to the grocery store is going to be way more interesting due to all the cool bags everywhere.  If you like movies and/or Dave's likeness, or if you think you like stuff I like go check out Dave's blog Bloody Terror.  Some of Dave's 'And Yet I Blame Hollywood' reviews are animated and can possibly be found on the web somewhere.  Maybe someone could post a link in the comments if they know where to find them?


  1. Kelly - That is awesome. I am proud to have my likeness on a Kelly Caseley creation (aka Kelly Caseley Kreation). You can bet I'll stop by the store. You am the coolest!

  2. That's beautiful. I already wear Dave Stewart to bed. Now I can take him with me to buy groceries.