Purses, beach bags, clutches, overnight bags, when it comes to girls and women it seems we just can’t own enough bags. We have our dressy purses, our everyday pocketbooks, different ones we take when going to the beach – and there’s always room in the closet for one more! Don’t grab one of your bags and run to the store to get another one; stay at home and make a new bag from an old tank top.
The type of tank top you use to make the new bag doesn’t matter much. It can be stretchy or not, can have spaghetti straps or wider straps, and can be most any color or design. Ones that have slits up the sides, though, or a scalloped hemline, are not useable for this project. The perfect hemline is one that’s straight across.
There are a couple of different ways to make a shoulder bag from the tank top. One way is done by running cord through the hem. To do this, cut a few threads out of the stitching in the hem. Make sure you cut just the threads and not the fabric itself. After opening the hem, attach a safety pin to the chosen cord or ribbon, then use it to pull the cord through the hem. Work the cord all the way around the hem then pull the pin back out through the opening. Remove the pin and bring the two ends of the cord together. Gather the hemline on the cord, bunching it close together and pulling the cord very tightly, then tie it in a double knot. Carry the shoulder bag by using the straps of the tank top as the straps for the purse.
A different way to make the bag is to sew it. Cut the hem off of the bag, turn it so that the side seams are actually the front and back centers, then sew straight across it. Or, cut the hem off, then use the scissors to round the hemline. Turn it so that the side seams become the front and back center and then sew across. Remember to back-tack when you begin and when you end the stitching. If you don’t sew you can use fabric glue to make the purse. Check the label to see how long it needs to dry before using the new bag.
Although the tank top bags can be carried around as-is you can easily make a closure for it by attaching a piece of Velcro, a snap, or even a button and buttonhole. Use large tank tops to make beach bags, any size top to make a shoulder bag. Use little girls’ tank tops to make bags for them or just small bags for a woman. The finished bags are great for carrying everyday or for taking to the beach. They’re perfect as overnight bags or to take camping. You’ll find them so easy to make and very useful!