How to Make a Purse from Jeans - The Happy Housewife™ :: Home Management

How to Make a Purse from Jeans

My daughter seems to wear the knees out of her jeans quicker than my boys ever did. I can cut them off for shorts, but many of her jeans have very cute designs on the legs that I didn’t want to go to waste.

A few weeks ago I took the jeans in the above picture and turned them into this adorable child’s purse. It was so simple to make I decided to make a second one for a photo tutorial. The first purse I made is a little different from the tutorial. Instead of closing the coordinating fabric I left it open and threaded a ribbon through the fabric for a drawstring closure. I think it looks cute either way.

This purse is definitely a low sew design, you only need to know how to sew a straight stitch. It is so easy too, I made the purse in less than 45 minutes and that included trying to figure out exactly what I was making and ripping it apart twice because I changed my mind.

To start, cut off the bottom of a pair of jeans just below the knee. These are kid’s jeans size 6, so adjust your cutting accordingly.

Turn the jeans inside out and sew the bottom together. I used the bottom hem as a guide for my line.

When it is finished you will have stitched the bottom of your purse together.

Flip your jeans right side out and measure around the top of the jeans. Add an additional centimeter to your measurement and then cut a strip of coordinating fabric the length of your measurement and about 6 centimeters wide.

Sew the ends of your strip of fabric wrong sides together.

Flip the jeans inside out and match up the right side of the fabric to the wrong side of the top edge  of the jeans. You also want to insert your handles. I used ribbon for the handles, but you can make them out of fabric too. The right side of the handles should be facing the right side of the coordinating fabric.

Sew around the entire top edge of the jeans.

This will create your finished top edge as well as attach your handles.

Once the coordinating fabric is attached flip the purse right side out. Fold the coordinating fabric over the top of the purse and press with an iron.

Fold the bottom edge of the coordinating fabric under approximately 1/2 centimeter and press again. Then stitch around the edge to secure the coordinating fabric.

The purse is finished! I added another straight stitch around the top of the purse because I wanted to make sure the handles were securely attached, but it isn’t a necessary step.

As I was making these I thought they would make perfect party favor bags for a little girl’s birthday party.


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  1. LOVE this!! Great idea!

  2. My 8 year old daughter wants to learn how to sew, and this would be a perfect project for her. Now I’m just bummed that I just gave all her applique jeans she outgrew to goodwill.

  3. Melissa says:

    What a great idea! I just threw some of my daughters away because of the knees being worn out. I have more though:)

  4. This is a great post and looks really easy… We wear the knees out of all our jeans quickly (because we get most of our clothes given to us used); some even come already ripped! Can’t wait to try this… Ever heard of using the back pockets by tacking them to a cloth covered board with furniture tacks?? Great organizer for art supplies… I’ve haven’t done it yet but this post reminded me of it. 🙂

  5. Very cute~I love it!

  6. That is so cute! I am going to feature it on my blog tomorrow!

  7. It’s adorable! We have plenty of jeans that I was about to donate or trash. My kids wear them out quickly! And they would make fun party bag!!

  8. I really need to get my sewing machine out, first I need to figure out where to put it and all my sewing things. 🙂 This is wonderful!

    DH wears holes in his pants from carrying drywall, I often wondered if I could take the different jeans and kind of “quilt” pieces together to make a bag!.

  9. I’ve been told that my 6yod takes scissors and starts the knees of her jeans ripping. At least this would give us something to do with all those ruined jeans. I’m showing this to my 13yod, who got a sewing machine for Christmas. 🙂

  10. I was skeptical when I read the title, I thought – ugh, jean purses are always ugly (imho). But you surprised me! These are adorable!!!!

    • TheHappyHousewife says:

      I hear ya- I have never been a big fan of jean purses… but these are surprisingly cute! Thanks for giving demin a second chance, lol.

  11. Those are adorable! It’s making me want to pull out my machine and sew again for the first time in, I’m ashamed to say 20 yrs!!

  12. I think dd and I will give this a try. Now to find some old jeans. DAV here I come!

  13. What a great idea and VERY cute! (We have the same jeans with the cordouroy triangle at the bottom.)

    Thanks for linking up to my Tutorial Tuesday. I hope you’ll add my link. ~ahem


  14. That’s adorable Toni! Things like this make me pine for a baby girl 🙂

  15. Leslie H says:

    You can also make bermuda shorts (my favorite) and keep the design on the jean!

  16. Great job! Love it!

    Please stop by and enter my giveaway…

  17. silly question, but what kind of needle are you using?? I never sewed denim before. Is it a special needle ??

    thanks for the help. I think I am going to attempt this 😉


    • TheHappyHousewife says:

      no- I probably do need a special needle, but I just used whatever was already in my machine….

  18. Very pretty! I’ve made durable jean purses for some time — graduated this week to my Beloved Husband’s Duckheads. No — they are not cutesy, but I can carry them every where on vacations, off road, picnic tables. You name it, they’ve picked up dirt from it. Toss them in the washing machine, touch up with an iron and they are good to do again — ready for a photo shoot in the far pasture?

  19. Heather N. says:

    My daughter is in love with little bags and purses and I needed to find a way to up-cycle her old clothes. Love this project, and it’s something I can finish in a few minutes. Thanks for sharing! 🙂

  20. I love this, soo cute! My oldest two girls keep asking for purse’s, How purfect!

  21. I love this, my two older girls are always asking for new purse’s, also my oldest wants to learn to sew, I may adapt this, as we don’t have any “pretty” used denim, but we have daddy’s worn out jeans. Hmmmm…..

  22. That is soo cute! My mom made me a jean purse too. Have you ever been to For a person like you, this would be perfect! A sewing masterpiece!

  23. Need more detail and more pictures to figure this out. Cut one leg? Thanks

  24. I will be making little purses for my great-nieces and the little girls of friends! These are so sweet!

  25. serenity says:

    If you had jeans a little bit wider you can do that same thing but as a backpack

  26. We stumbled over here coming from a different page and thought I might as well check things out.
    I like what I see so now i am following you. Look forward to exploring your web page for a second


  1. […] Low Sew Chic: How to Make a Purse from Jeans – The Happy Housewife I thought this would make a fabulous summer project!  Life skills and a cool purse in the end?  Excellent! […]

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