Repurposed old jeans into zipper pouches

If like me, you’ve had the luxury of time to sort out your wardrobe in this lockdown, then you’ll have a bundle or two on a heap, ready for recycling or destined for a popular auction site. In our case, it wasn’t so much a result of finding unwanted or unloved pieces of clothing. We have evidently fed and watered our kids so well that our 13 year old suddenly had a massive growth spurt, which left her with a few pairs of unwearable pairs of jeans. I would normally pass her clothes down but her jeans are in such ‘undesirable conditions’ that can either mean one of two things : fabric recycling or item repurposing. So we repurposed. We’ve decided to make these zipper cases for various reasons :

  • a) These are nice quick sew
  • b) You don’t need a huge amount of materials to make them. This clearly means I can cut around the ‘undesirable’ patches of her jeans.
  • Zipper cases are always useful in our house. We can never have enough of them to store copious amount of stationery collected throughout my children’s schooling years.
  • They make GREAT gifts!!

Without further ado, let’s get into it.

What you’ll need :

  • Two pieces of rectangles measuring 9.5 inches x 6.5 inches tall, cut from your old pair of jeans.
  • One small rectangle piece measuring 0.75 inches x 2 inches, also cut from your old jeans
  • One small D ring with a diameter of 7cm x 11cm
  • One 9 inch zip of your colour choice.

To make the zipper pouches :

Step 1 : Get your materials ready for sewing
Step 2 : Start with your small rectangle and the D ring.
Step 3 : Iron the wrong sides together to create a centre line. Then fold both outer long edges into the centre, wrong sides together and iron them into submission.

Step 4 : Sew the long edges with a 1/8 inch seam allowance.
Step 5 : Put the tab through the D ring and sew the bottom to secure. Now put this tab aside for now.
Step 6 : Now take one piece of the large rectangle and your zip. Place them wrong sides together.

Step 7 : Secure the zip with some pins.

Step 8 : Next step is to sew the top layer of zip and material. Use a zipper foot if you have. If not, a normal sewing foot will do.
Step 9 : Turn the material right side up, make sure the zip is flat and then top stitch on the right side.

Step 10 : Now repeat steps 6-9 for the other side.
Step 11 : Place the tab made earlier, on the right side of the pouch, 1.5 inches from the bottom of the zip. Secure with a few stitches. Make sure the tab is facing inwards.
Step 12 : Now the fun part. Place the two rectangles, right sides together. Open the zip at least half way through.
Step 13 : Stitch around the three open sides with a 1/4 inch seam allowance. Then very carefully snip the corners. Becareful not to snip through the stitches.
Step 14 : Zig zag stitch around the inside of the pouch. This will ensure your pouch doesn’t unravel on the inside over time.
Step 15 : The final step is to turn your pouch inside out. For some of you, this is when you discovered that you skipped step 12. If your zip is not open before you proceed to sew all the corners shut, you’ll have trouble turning your pouch inside out. Fear not. Unpick those stitches and go back to step 12. Your finished pouch should look very similar to this.

I have managed to harvest enough materials for at least 6 zipper pouches, which I thought was quite incredible! But please don’t stop at Step 15. Embelish, decorate and personalised your pouches. Have fun with them! I certainly did with mine. I decorated some with iron on patches. If you are more adventurous, you can have the designs printed on printable transfer paper and iron them onto your pouches. This was really fun to do too!

So good luck and if you have decided to make these, please tag me on Instagram #sewnicelydone . I would absolutely love to see them!

Fely xxx

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