Recycled Jeans turned Denim Jacket

My friend Audrey over at Skirt Fixation made an incredible denim quilt that she posted the other day, out of upcycled jeans. When I read she made it for a refashioners challenge (which is right up my alley), I knew I couldn’t resist making something to enter myself (although that quilt is pretty hard to top)! The contest is over on Makery.uk.  After taking all of the jeans out of my upcycle pile (doesn’t everyone have one of those?!), I decided to make a Denim Jacket for my Falafel girl.

Upcycled Jeans turned into a Denim Jacket

I have always wanted to make one of these! Of course, when I started looking, I could not find a pattern to use. So, my next thought was “what pattern do I own, that is close enough so I can adapt it into a jean jacket?”.

Upcycled Jeans turned into a Denim Jacket

I fell back on one of my favorite patterns, the Bookworm Button Up (affiliate link). You can see other Bookworm Button Ups I have made here and here and here.

Upcycled Jeans turned into a Denim Jacket

I used it as a base, and then made some obvious changes. I shortened it, and extended each of the front pieces instead of adding plackets, and I broke the back up into sections (and took out the pleat).

Upcycled Jeans turned into a Denim Jacket

The most fun I had was in embellishing it! For the back, I used the same method I used here with water soluble fabric (affiliate link). I think it adds a little whimsy, at the same time it uses up a bunch of scraps.

  Upcycled Jeans turned into a Denim Jacket

A friend had made me those wool felt feathers, a few years ago, and I have been holding on to them to use on the right project. I think they are perfect for this!

Upcycled Jeans turned into a Denim Jacket

For the hem, I unpicked a wasitband on one of the old jeans I had, and used it, as is (just upside down).

Upcycled Jeans turned into a Denim Jacket

I left the distressed spots that were part of the jeans. For some pieces, I actually turned them inside out for some color variation.

Upcycled Jeans turned into a Denim Jacket

I had so much fun with this one, and the best part is, it used up some jeans (and scraps) that were taking up space!

Upcycled Jeans turned into Jean jacket

AND my girl now has a snazzy new jean jacket to go with her sassy new haircut!

jeanjacket7m

What have YOU upcycled today?

Teacher Gift Idea

I am getting a jump start this year on Teacher Appreciation/end-of-the school year gifts (since I have so many to make). The Bee has 3 teachers plus specialists (ie: PE, Art, Music, etc.) and Falafel has 1 plus specialists and nice people in the office. We’d like to show our appreciation for all of them.

One idea I have is to make reusable cloth produce bags. I love ours, and use them every week. They make great beach treasure bags too.

In case you would also like to make these, I have a little tutorial to share.

Reusable Produce Bags

Teacher gift idea: Reusable Produce bags

You’ll need cotton fabric, mesh, and cording (as well as a way to sew them).

First, cut your fabric.

Teacher gift idea: Reusable Produce bags

To make one bag you need: 4 pieces cotton fabric cut to 3″x17″ each,

2 pieces mesh cut to 7″x17″ each,

Approx. 1 yard of cording

Next, you will sew 2 strips of cotton to a panel of mesh (right sides together). I zigzag stitched mine (because my serger and I are not speaking right now), then topstiched afterward.

Teacher gift idea: Reusable Produce bags

Repeat for the other side.

Now place the two pieces right sides together and pin the edges of three sides.

Teacher gift idea: Reusable Produce bags

On one side, about an inch down from the top, leave a space unsewn. This will be where the cord gets threaded through later on.

Teacher gift idea: Reusable Produce bags

Now you can serge the three sides (if you have a serger), or you can straight stitch all around and then go back and zigzag stitch to reduce fraying. Make sure you do not sew up the space between those pins!

Next turn down your fabric at the top (twice to hide raw edges) to create a channel for the cord.

Teacher gift idea: Reusable Produce bags

You will want to have that unsewn space (hole) on top so you can see it. Sew all around the edge.

Teacher gift idea: Reusable Produce bags

Almost done. Now, ready your cord. Place a safety pin at one end.

Teacher gift idea: Reusable Produce bags

Push pin through hole, and thread the cord all the way through until it comes back around to the hole again.

Teacher gift idea: Reusable Produce bags

Tie a knot in the ends and turn the bag right side out!

Teacher gift idea: Reusable Produce bags

Insert produce…

Teacher gift idea: Reusable Produce bags

OR give as a gift!

Teacher gift idea: Reusable Produce bags

You can even add a tag to make it professional-looking as well.

Teacher gift idea: Reusable Produce bags

When I was photographing these, I noticed I was being watched.

Teacher gift idea: Reusable Produce bags

I think they liked these too.

What will you make for Teacher gifts?

************