T-Shirt Bag Tutorial

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Note: The lighting was bad for some of these pictures. It’s all the same t-shirt…just so you know…

tshirt grocery bag tutorial

For this project you’ll need an old t-shirt, a medium sized bowl, and regular sewing supplies

tshirt grocery bag tutorial

1. Turn the t-shirt inside out, line up the shirt along the hemline, pin, and sew the front and back together.

t-shirt grocery bag tshirt

Because this is going to be the bottom of your bag, you want the seam to be strong and reinforced. Sew this seam using a stitch length of 1.

tshirt grocery bag tutorial

2. Arrange the t-shirt so you have a triangle with the hem bisecting the triangle exactly down the middle.

tshirt grocery bag tutorial

3. Sew straight across the triangle about 2 1/2″ from the point of the triangle. You can do more or less depending on how wide you want the base of the bag to be.

You could skip this step, but your bag wouldn’t have a rectangular base. The bag would just come to a point where you sewed the seam. Do this step only if you want a wider base.

tshirt grocery bag tutorial

This is what the bottom of the bag looks like after completing steps 2 and 3.

tshirt grocery bag tutorial

4. Place a medium sized bowl around the neckline so that about half of the bowl is on top of the shirt. Mark a line around the bowl, pin the two layers of shirt together, and cut. This step will make the opening larger and therefore easier to put things in the bag.

tshirt grocery bag tutorial

5. With the shirt still inside out, cut the sleeves off of the shirt. Turn the t-shirt inside out and…VOILA!

tshirt grocery bag tutorial

This is a great way to keep that favorite t-shirt in use. Have fun making your super easy t-shirt bags!

{ 17 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Cortney July 30, 2008 at 4:06 am

I love it! This caught my eye because I have that same t-shirt! :) I’m excited to give this a try. Thanks!

2 vanillajoy July 30, 2008 at 9:27 am

How funny! Did you start at BYU fall of 2002? I lived in DT – maybe we saw each other around and didn’t know it!

3 Sue D August 30, 2008 at 7:26 am

Wow–what a great recycling tip and a great way to use favorite T shirts that you can no longer wear. I can’t believe they don’t unravel. I would probably feel better hemming the edges but I will have to test it out.

4 Kat September 21, 2008 at 4:10 pm

what a great idea!! i need some more fabric bags, but was going to make them from scratch!! Thanks for the awesome tut!

5 Cristina March 18, 2009 at 12:53 pm

I have a bunch of tees all marked and ready to sew! I’m pretty excited to see how they turn out! I’m using a serger, so they’ll be really fast! This will be my first time using fabric grocery bags! I’m really excited! Thanks for the great Tut!

6 Maren July 6, 2009 at 1:14 pm

Wow, I am going to do this. What a way to recycle old tees. Great idea!!

7 Dana July 27, 2009 at 8:42 am

This is such a great idea. We too have a lot of old t-shirts. Now I have a great new use for them!!!

8 Christine Pensa August 22, 2010 at 7:59 pm

my son just cleaned out his dresser and has a bunch of t-shirts too small to wear but to special to give up. When I mentioned a t-shirt bag he was thrilled. We decided to take the favorite t-shirt that his Grandma gave him and turn it into a special overnight bag to take to Grandma’s house. We are going to take a swim shirt and turn it into a small beach bag too!

9 smilingwoman December 31, 2010 at 1:56 pm

VERY clever! I will try this with some of my old shirts… great GREEN project! Thanks for sharing!

10 eljahb August 23, 2011 at 9:08 pm

This is a fantastic tutorial. I’m going to put it on my fan page!


Thank you for sharing!

11 Britta Hubbard October 16, 2011 at 5:56 pm

Hello! I have been using your pattern for my 7th grade students in Idaho. They really enjoy the project. Thanks!
Britta Hubbard

12 Donna January 28, 2012 at 9:32 am

Thank you so much for this detailed tutorial. I just made 2 of the bags. They came out great in spite of my limited sewing ability.

13 Lisa February 12, 2012 at 8:31 pm

Please consider adding a pinterest.com linking button to this page. Your tutorial is wonderful.

14 Aimee February 29, 2012 at 3:07 pm

This is genius!!!!

15 nourah June 10, 2012 at 11:39 pm

I love it!! it doesn’t take much time to complete the tasks..easy and very useful.Thanks for the great idea.

16 1sunflowerdreamer July 22, 2012 at 4:11 pm

theses are great for the back of wheel chairs !!!!!!!!

17 jim November 11, 2012 at 7:47 am

t-shirts are great for all kinds of stuff! thanks!

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