Tartan Denim Zipper Bag And Damage Control

in NeedleWorkMonday5 months ago

This is an unusual bag, I've never done anything so colorful but it's always good to diversify the offer, plus using colors makes my work more interesting. I've been working with blue and black denim for month now, a little bit of change would not hurt anyone.


There was a post about a month and a half ago about half of the process here Bold, Crazy Or Both? I Need Some Feedback Here, but I' going to tell you in a few words what it was about.


The Beginning

The whole thing started, when I got this checkered fabric. I don't know what it was earlier, must have been a coat or some kind. When I got this, it was already dismembered. I saw a great opportunity in my hands and acted immediately.


I had to choose between the right side and the wrong side of this tartan, as you can see one is fluffy, the other is not. My choice was the wrong side, which is not fluffy, after all this is a bag, not a blanket.


I thought a lighter denim would go well with the dark tartan, as a little bit of contrast is always good, but because I didn't have any light denim at my disposal, I chose to use the wrong side of a dark jeans, which was actually treated with acid.



One man's trash is another man's treasure, that's what they say and it is true. I don't consider these trash as it can be used for a very good purpose, not the mention the environmental impact upcycling has.

The owner of the jeans had to find out the hard way, that acid and fabrics are not a match, thus he thought he has to throw his jeans away. Lucky me, people know I'm upcycling everything I can, so now I'm getting bags full of clothes that are not needed. I'm selecting the clothes I can use and what I consider still good to use, I'm sending to people in need, that I know would be happy to get some help, to get some clothes that are still good. These crazy times are teaching us to be more careful with spendings and I'm happy to help, anyway I can.

So this is how this almost brand new pair of jeans ended up on my table and I used it for this bag. It was perfect for me.


The Problem

Yes, there was a problem, as there's always a problem, isn't it? When I made the carry straps, at the end, one was longer than the other. I could not finish the bag that day and because I was busy, could only work on it again after a few days and till then, I forgot about the length difference between the two straps and used them as they were. Needless to say the result was one strap longer than the other and the bad looked awful. Leaving it like that was out of the question, I don't do that ever. I like to have my conscious clear and create products that people are proud of, not trick and deceive people because I made a huge mistake.

Sooooo, I had to put it aside and now was the time to correct my mistake and finish the bag.


Lining And Thread

The lining is a simple denim shirt, which I've bought from the second hand shop but in fact it's brand new. This shirt is the victim of this fast fashion life we are living in. Most likely it's been out of fashion, could not be sold and ended up in the second hand shop. Lucky me.

So I thought I'd use the pocket of the shirt as there's no such thing as too many pockets. My bags usually have three pockets, many even four, if the shirt has a good pocket.


During the lockdown, when it became obvious prices are going to explode, I made sure to buy as much thread and zipper as I thought it would be enough for a few months. This thread was part of that pile and now it came in handy as matches the color of the shirt.


The Zipper

Even though I have created a number of bags, more than 15 by now, the zipper part is always the hardest. Till now I used to sew the zipper, the denim and lining together so I can make the final sewing. It has been easier but it's time to learn to do it without manual sewing. So this is the first time I used pins.



I'm not saying it's perfect, but I'm pretty satisfied with the result. There's a couple of millimeters difference at the joining but it's not so bad I believe.


This is the lining, with the original pocket of the shirt. You can keep your ID, drivers license in here.


The other side of the lining, with the three big pockets made by me. These are stronger pockets for your phone, keys etc.


Tartan Denim Zipper Bag

At the end of the day I'm proud of this bag. It's unique, different from what I've seen on Etsy, something new.



This tartan bag will be listed on Etsy shortly.

My Next Projects

I have to finish a denim patchwork bag which is half finished, need to do the lining and zipper. Next will be a small backpack. This is a huge challenge for me which I'm going to document for sure. Then I'd like to diversify my range of products and create Christmas decorations as well. I know there's still plenty of time till Christmas but my time is limited, and I need to start in time to be ready with a large range till Christmas.


#NeedleWorkMonday founder: @crosheille
Hostesses (admins): @muscara, @shanibeer and @marblely

Please feel free to check out my Etsy store.

Check out my other sewing posts:


The bag looks really pretty. I love the contrasting colours of the checkered fabric against the denim. And the lining with the denim covered zipper is brilliant. Such a pretty finishing to the bag. I don't see the problem with the strap though from the photos. Nevertheless, it looks like a perfect product now for etsy :)

Oh, many thanks for the nice words! I really appreciate it 🤗
The problem is or was not visible as you could set the strap in a way so it could not be seen but only one way, placing the longer strap on the shorter one.
I still have to list it, maybe tomorrow.


Thank you for your engagement on this post, you have recieved ENGAGE tokens.

Shared on Twitter

This is an amazing creativity so let's take it to the world.

Thank you, you're very kind! 😊

I love it, love it, love it!!!! That looks very fun and classy too. Great job on the upcycling the fabrics.

Thank you so much for the nice words! I'm glad you like it. There's more to come soon 😊

It ended up very good. And a bit different than your other bags. Well done! 🤗

Thank you! I'm doing another one for muself, that will be different as well.

Great outcome of this bag! And denim is what I call the "saver" because you can do anything with Jeans and it always saves a project!

Thank you! You are right, I agree with you on denim, you can do everything with it.