Friday, April 15, 2011

{Repurpose - Cargo Shorts to Peg Bag}

My First Repurpose Project!

Today my brother-in-law messaged me to ask if I'd like to do a little sewing project for him! Never to pass up a challenge I eagerly read on... not surprisingly (he's quite domesticated) he was interested in a peg apron.

I politely explained (via messages) that my fabric stash consists mostly of vintage florals or pinks/purples... would that be fitting for such attire? 
His response... not a problem!

Well, when said brother-in-law arrived today to help paint our deck (it's nearly finished!) - I was showing off my vintage florals when I remembered an old pair of Chris' shorts which were in my 'use someday for something' pile of fabrics! 


Brother-in-law is like-minded when it comes to recycling and reducing global footprint... sounds like a perfect repurpose project for this ol' pair of shorts!

This meant it was no longer an apron but more of a bag/satchel... but it'll hold them pegs, that's for sure! :)

Speaking of the shorts... they're definitely clean! 
Chris had them ready to be thrown away and I said, "Oh I'll just wash them and use the fabric!" Well, I washed them and put them away in his wardrobe (or was it the floordrobe!?) about 3 times before Chris reminded me they were to go in the bin! 
"No, no, I'll use the fabric!" 
You get the point!

So here are the steps in my first repurposing project! It felt really good to finally find a (re)use for these shorts! 

(I'm not going to call this a 'tutorial' because it's probably not concise enough! 
But if you sew, I'm sure you'll get it!)

How to....

1. I cut off one leg at the desired length and patched up a little hole in the back. I decided to keep the fly because I liked the look of it (however, the button got in the way later on so perhaps not so important to keep it for aesthetic reasons over sewing  practicality!!)

2. Turn the short leg inside out and cut off any pockets/excess material that is not needed. (I cut off the main side pocket which meant I needed to turn it right side out and sew up the open pocket.)

3. While inside out, sew along base and side to create a sewn up bag with only a top opening.

4.  Set aside your 'shorts' and cut a piece of fabric for your lining. To do this I measured the bag, it was 34x30cm. Then cut a piece 68x60cm from my pink spots fabric!

5. Fold your piece of fabric in half and sew up both sides so that you have a top opening. Leave about 10 cm open on one side to turn inside out later.

6. To make handle... B-I-L decided on one over the shoulder strap. I cut strips from the shorts fabric 3 inches wide (sorry to skip back to imperial but my cutting board is imperial!)
I had to sew these together to create the length I wanted. 
I cut a strip from the pink spots fabric for the back of the strap (also 3 inches wide) These were the correct length to B-I-L's waist so should be 'custom measured'

7. Lay the two strips right sides together and sew along both edges. Turn inside out, a pin can help guide the fabric through.

... Iron strap out flat. Sew along both edges again (on right sides) to finish! Looks neat, huh!

8. Then I attached the strap and lining... I'm pretty sure these instructions are clear as mud! But hey, hopefully it makes some sense... it was all made just off the top of my head this afternoon! A fun, useful, quick and easy sewing project!

Soooo... final steps....

9. Turn bag right side out and attach strap to bag as you wish (I attached both ends to the back of the bag so that B-I-L can easily reach in for pegs!)

10. Turn bag inside out again. Turn lining right side out! Push lining into bag (right sides should be facing) and pin together at the opening. Sew around the whole 'opening' - remember you've left that little hole for turning right side out!

11. Turn right side out (through hole in lining - I liken this to giving birth... you don't think it's going to fit but then somehow it does!!) and once all is out push lining into bag neatly.

You're nearly done!

12. Sew around top edge of opening to bag to neatly finish the bag (you could do this in a contrasting coloured cotton), hand stitch the opening in the lining closed and you're finished! (More birth references? Nah!)

Hope you like it Unky D!

Thanks for painting, cooking & cleaning the kitchen!


Would love to hear about things you've re-used in a creative way! 
Use the comment section below!

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  1. Really cute! Great job on your first recycled project. It's addictive! Thank you so much for linking up to Upcycled Awesome over at Hope to see you back next week!

  2. thats cute! i love repurposing things, but i usually just end up refashioning shirts and dresses into better shirts and dresses. i have a few no sew refashions on my page!

  3. Thanks Robin... I was glad to be able to use something I'd put away hoping to recycle! Will hopefully to some more upcycling so I can link up again next week! Will add your button too! :)

  4. Sharde, thanks for stopping by. I would love to start refashioning some of my clothes instead of giving all of them away or to second hand stores. Perhaps I will find some no-sew inspiration with you! :) Thanks

  5. what a great repurposing project! Thanks for sharing!

  6. I love the polka dots! Thanks for sharing!

  7. I had blue polka dots but Unky D wanted pink!! :) Boys will be boys!


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