Upcycled Tee Shirt Bag DIY


How many of you have countless amounts of tee shirts lined up in your drawers? Why not transform your tee into something you’ve been eyeing in stores…a cute rocker chic tote, for example. Here at M&J we’re always looking for ways to amp up our clothes. Since it is Earth Day we felt it was the perfect time to recycle something old and make it new again. We were immediately inspired after coming across this  tutorial, and we decided that revamping one of our many old tees would make a perfect Earth Day DIY.



Tee Shirt (we used a black one)

12mm x 8mm iron-on Skull Nailheads (leftover from our Alexander McQueen Inspired Bag DIY)



1 1/2″ Polyester Mono Ribbon 


Lay your shirt on a flat surface. The first thing that you will be doing is cutting the bottom off.
NOTE: The amount you cut off will determine the size of our bag. We only cut off an inch but if you are looking to create a smaller bag feel free to cut off more.


Using your ruler mark off 6 inches from the bottom of your shirt and lay the ruler across the width of the shirt.
Create small 2 cm cuts from the bottom of your shirt extending to the ruler


The bottom of your tee shirt at this point should look almost like a fringe with wide strands hanging down.


Once the bottom of your shirt is completely cut into a two-layered fringe, begin to pull and knot the front and back strands together.



Gently pull the completed bottom to stretch out the bag


Use the same cutting method for the sleeves of of the tee.  This will be a decorative detail on the finished bag.DSC_0429

Cut identical slits extending from the end of the sleeve to the shoulder.


Pull these strands as well.


Knot each of these strands together except for the first one that is closest to your collar. The strands you have not knotted will be a hole through which you will slip the bag strap.


At this point your tee shirt should look something like this:DSC_0448

Since we had our iron-on skull studs leftover from our Alexander McQueen Inspired DIY we ironed them onto the tee shirt to add an extra pizzazz.



We used our 1 ½” Polyester Mono Ribbon as a strap.  We pulled the 1 1/2″ Polyester Mono Ribbon through one sleeve of the tee and over through the other tying the ends into a knot.




And there we have it: a tee-shirt-turned-bag that we can now reuse and wear out on the town.


If you made any eco-friendly DIYs, embellished something old, or transformed a garment into something new…share it with us!  We love getting inspiration from our readers and seeing all your great ideas and DIYs.  Happy Earth Day!

18 comments on “Upcycled Tee Shirt Bag DIY

  1. Kristy J. W. says:

    I have made purses out of my 5 year old’s old hoodies. I will be trying this next. Love the idea!

  2. This has blown my mind. It looks nothing like a t-shirt by the end-love it!

  3. sarahwbiggs says:

    Reblogged this on Upcycling ideas… and commented:
    I have so many T-shirts I can do this to! :D

  4. Brilliant idea from M&J blog!!

  5. shallowself says:

    Pretty awesome, im definitively going to try!

  6. M&J Trimming says:

    Post all of your DIYs we’d love to see them!

  7. […] really like it. I conceded to the inevitable in DIY land and made it into a handy t-shirt bag using these […]

  8. zachandclem says:

    LLLllllooooooovvvveeee it :D

  9. Kimberly Uy says:

    Cool bag! Love it so much. I will try it also but I will use hot-fix Wholesale rhinestones as embellishment. I’m so excited to do it. It’s very informing to read your blog. Thanks for that.

  10. […] Upcycled Tee Shirt Bag DIY […]

  11. Leslie says:

    what size tshirt did you use? Woman or Men?

  12. […] I’m always searching the wonderful world of Pinterest for new upcycling ideas. I found this tutorial the other day and loved the shaggy, vintage, rockout look. So when I went to the thrift store and […]

  13. Thanks for the tutorial, I linked you on my blog where you can check out my version! Stitchesamiss.wordpress.com

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