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Making a handmade handbag from old clothes.

Updated: Apr 17, 2023

Making a handbag or purse out of old damaged or unwanted clothes is a great wayre-purpose to old garments and create a unique and personal piece of apparel. It is also a fantastic way to keep a loved ones clothing in use long after they have gone and mean you can have a totally personal handbag or purse keepsake.

In this blog post, we'll go over some basic steps for how to make a handbag out of clothes.


  • Old clothing (such as a denim jacket or pair of jeans)

  • Fabric scissors

  • Sewing machine

  • Thread

  • Zipper

  • Strap material (such as leather or fabric)


  1. Choose your clothing item - Start by selecting a clothing item that you want to re-purpose into a handbag. Denim jackets or jeans work well for this project, but you can also use a dress, blouse, or any other type of clothing. I personally love using old wool coats they make fantastic bags with great texture.

2. Choose your bag pattern - This can be the trickiest part choose a pattern that fits the pieces of fabric you have, you can use parts of the clothing within your design, such as pockets, button plackets etc.

3. Cut out the handbag pieces - Use fabric scissors or a rotary cutter to cut out the pieces of your handbag. If you find you don't have pieces of fabric long enough for the handles or straps use a coordinating fabric, leather or faux leather to compliment your design.

4. Choose your hardware - Choose hardware to compliment the colour and style of the bag you are making. This can really give your handmade projects an edge and enable you to create a unique style.

5. Follow the pattern designers instructions to construct your bag, take your time and enjoy the process.

And that's it! You now have a unique and stylish handbag made out of clothes. With a little creativity and some basic sewing skills, you can re-purpose some pre-loved clothes into something new and useful. Give it a try and see what you can create!

Until next time happy sewing

Deb x

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