Making a Blue Jean Halloween Bag
Alter a child-size pair of blue jeans into a Halloween treat tote, child's purse, favor, or gift bag. By cutting off the legs and the side seams, the bag is transformed into a miniature tote perfect for a child's hands. Since the bulk of the seams are removed, sewing through the thick denim is not that difficult. However, you will need to use a heavy-duty or denim needle in your sewing machine.
Approximate Time: 1 hour (excluding wash and dry time)
- child-size blue jeans
- straight pins
- sewing machine
- washer and dryer
- orange felt
- black felt
- black embroidery floss
- embroidery needle
- orange embroidery floss
- two 1-inch flat black buttons
- seam ripper
- extra jeans (optional)
- Halloween fabric scrap
- Lay a pair of child-size blue jeans on your work surface. The picture of the finished tote was a size 6 slim. Adjust the waistband edge so that the front is even with the back. Pin the waistband together.
- Flip the jeans with the backside facing up. Cut straight across the width of the jeans, 1 inch below the back pockets. Pin the bottom edges together.
- The sides are a little trickier to cut. Most jeans have little metal rivets on the pockets. When cutting the side edges, you will need to cut inside the rivets. This will allow room for a seam and a 1/2-inch raggedy edge. You may also need to remove a belt loop on each side edge. The picture of the finished tote is 10 inches wide. Depending on the jeans you use, your tote may be slightly wider, narrower, shorter, or longer. Cut the side edges vertically straight from the waistband to the cut bottom edge. Pin the side edges together.
- Sew the sides and bottom edges a 1/2 inch from the edge. Clip 1/4-inch wide slits along the sewn seam. Toss the sewn bag portion in the washer and dryer to fray the clipped edges.
- Place a quarter on a double layer of orange felt. Cut around the quarter 1/4 inch larger than the quarter. These are the eyes. Cut a 1 3/4-inch tall triangle with a 1 1/2-inch base from the orange felt for the nose. Cut a 1 1/2-inch wide by 4 1/2-inch long rectangle from orange felt and a 1-inch wide by 3 1/2-inch long rectangle from black felt. Round the corners. These are the mouth pieces.
- Using the photo as a guide, arrange the felt pieces on the front of the blue jean tote. Pin the pieces in place.
- Sew a running stitch, 1/4-inch from the edge of the orange felt pieces, using black embroidery floss and an embroidery needle. Attach the black felt of the mouth in the same way using orange embroidery floss.
- Place 1-inch flat black buttons over the bottom half of the felt eyes. Attach the button using orange embroidery floss. Tie the ends of the floss in a knot on the front of the buttons.
- Using a seam ripper, cut 1/2-inch slits in the waistband just inside the side seams on the front and back of the tote. You will have a total of four slits (two on each side) in the waistband.
- Rip two 1-inch wide by 24-inch long strips from the legs of the jeans. Use a larger pair of jeans if the legs of the jeans you are using are not long enough. Hold the strips together. Tie an overhand knot in the center. This is the Halloween tote's handle and the knot is the top-center.
- Use the slits made in the waistband to attach the handle. Separate the strips on one end of the handle. Working from the inside of the tote to the outside, insert an end through each of the slits on one side edge of the tote. Pull 4 inches of the ends to the outside and tie half a knot. Separate the ends on the other end of the handle and attach to the tote on the other side edge.
- Rip a 2-inch wide strip of Halloween fabric 8 inches longer than the circumference of the waistband. Thread the strip through the belt loops like a belt and tie in a knot on the front. Since you probably had to remove the side belt loops, position the belt strip over the half knots of the tied handle. Tie the other half of the knot over the belt to secure.
By cyndee kromminga from Winfield, KS
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