Take denim to the next level of style by turning jeans into a fashionable tote

Denim is a fashionable and durable material that’s used to make jeans of all brand-names world-wide. It’s not uncommon for a closet or dresser drawer to be stuffed with multiple pairs of these comfortable and convenient pants. When its time to restock denim and swap out an old pair for something new, there’s no need to toss those well-used jeans in the trash. Instead, take some time to repurpose them into a denim tote that makes everyday errands not only easy but an exercise in style.
A sewing machine will be needed to complete this DIY project, but traditional stitching is all it takes to turn denim jeans into an over-the-shoulder accessory that’s perfect for heading to the library, grabbing groceries or even a day at the beach. Depending on how the pocket is positioned, turning jeans into a tote can come with the added benefit of already built-in additional storage space. The soft denim strips used for the handles ensure that carrying this tote is always comfortable. Pair a denim tote with casual daywear, and enjoy a fashion statement that comes with the pride of knowing used materials have been put to great use.
-A pair of denim jeans
-Cutting Mat
-Rotary cutter
-Sewing pins
-Sewing machine
-Thread snips
DIY Everywhere
1. Cut off the pant legs of a pair of jeans essentially turning them into shorts. Cut both legs off at the crotch line.
2. Cut each individual pant leg along the outer seam from bottom to top and set them to the side.
3. Cut the fabric across the crotch of the shorts out horizontally.
4. Cut the shorts in half up the front of the denim, staying to the right of the zipper and continuing to cut through the waistband.
5. Flip the shorts over, and unfold the fabric so both pockets are facing up.
6. Cut the shorts in half up the middle seam. Set the two panels of fabric to the side. Each one should include a front pocket and a back pocket.
7. Gather a cutting board, ruler and rotary cutter. Position one of the panels of fabric with pockets upside down on the cutting board. Make sure the interior of the front pocket is facing up on the left-hand side.
8. Cut the fabric diagonally starting at the bottom left corner of the denim and moving up towards the top left corner. Line the cut up with the edge of the front pocket.
9. Cut a straight line up the right side of the denim panel lining the ruler and rotary cutter up with the outer edge of the back pocket seam.
10. Trim the bottom of the denim into a straight line. When cuts are complete, the denim panel should be perfectly square.
11. Open one of the pant legs that was cut in half on a flat working surface. The bottom of the pant leg should be positioned towards the top of the table with the dark side of the denim facing up.
12. Position the waistband of the denim panel at the top of the pant leg.
13. Use the denim panel as a stencil to cut the pant leg into an identical shape and size.
14. Cut two identical 20-inch-by-6-inch strips using the leftover length of denim from the pant leg.
15. Fold each of the two strips of denim into quarters, and pin them down the centerline.
16. Stitch the strips down the centerline removing pins as stitches are placed. Trim away thread with thread snips as needed. There is an option to serge the strips if desired.
17. Pin the ends of each of the two strips to the waistband of both the denim panel with pockets and the pant leg that was cut to the same size. Make sure that the two panels of denim are lined up at the top to ensure the strips, which will be the tote straps, are also aligned.
18. Stitch the strips at both ends to both of the denim panels.
19. Place both denim panels on top of one another with the straps lined up and the dark denim facing in.
20. Pin the sides and bottom of the denim panels together.
21. Stitch all three edges. There is an option to serge the edges at well during this step.
22. Turn the denim tote inside out, and press the corners out individually.
23. Carry the denim tote on a daily basis to hold books, groceries or make for an amazing accessory at the beach!