reversible bag from a thrifted shirt

I’ve been thrifting and yard sale-ing for awhile since I moved to a place where that is the popular thing to do on the weekends (because not much else happens). But it wasn’t until I started reading more craft blogs that I started looking at clothes as potential fabric.

I was at the thrift store one day when I found a shirt I had to have. I wasn’t sure if it would fit but it didn’t matter because I am a sucker for pretty blues. It turns out the shirt was the right size, but the pattern wasn’t working on me as a top. So I turned it into a bag.

I’ve pinned a number of bag tutorials, but I thought this simple reversible bag tutorial from Very Purple Person would work well for the shirt. I considered a plain white lining, but didn’t think it would have the pizzaz I wanted and needed to balance out the bold shirt pattern. I found a piece of bright yellow broadcloth in my remnant stash and thought that would add a nice pop and contrast to the blue and white.

To start turning the shirt into fabric, I ripped out the darts in the back and removed the boring shirt buttons. I sewed the button placard closed on each side before I started cutting the pieces out for the bag. After the pieces were cut, I sewed the buttons on over the buttonholes before I started putting the whole bag together.

I found these buttons in my recently acquired button stash from my co-worker, Cyndi. I was looking for larger buttons that would completely cover up the buttonholes and came across these yellow ones that went with the lining.

Since the lining is broadcloth it isn’t opaque, but I didn’t mind the stripes showing through a bit. If you had a thin fabric, but wanted a thicker lining you could use the simple fix of doubling your lining to make it appear more solid. I imagine the blue side will be out most of the time anyway, so I just used a single layer of fabric for this bag. To finish it off, I topstitched around the handles in yellow thread to bring a little more of the yellow to the outside.

This color combo is ready for summer and I can’t wait to try it out at the beach!

Here’s another bag I made in different colors using the same pattern.

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