DIY: How To Make a Reusable Shopping Bag From a T-Shirt (No Sewing!)

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We recently learnt how to make a DIY no-sew reusable shopping bag from an old t-shirt at a Boomerang Bags session. Find a tattered tee and follow these step-by-step directions to make one of your own!

After we did an Instagram story on making a reusable shopping bag out of second hand t-shirts we got a few messages asking how to do it so here are step-by-step instructions of how to DIY a shopping bag without needing a sewing machine.

All you need is an old t-shirt and a pair of scissors!

This is a great use for shirts you no longer wear that are too worn or not in a good state or not the type of thing that will sell at second-hand stores, but that are not ready to become rags just yet. It is also the perfect solution for band tees or souvenir shirts or any clothing with good memories attached to them that you don’t actually wear but can’t seem to part with.

I used a shirt I bought at a bar in Vietnam years ago when touring the country. I never wore it except for around the house occasionally but it reminded me of a good night out and I didn’t want to get rid of it. Now that it is a bag I’l get a lot more use out of it!

If you don’t have any clothing at home that you can use, why not visit a thrift store and find a cheap top to use to make a bag.

Thank you to Boomerang Bags for teaching us how to make these and for all the incredible work it does getting communities to reuse instead of using single-use! Boomerang Bags is a “global, grassroots movement connecting and empowering local communities to tackle plastic pollution at its source”. It “supports the diversion of post-consumer material (waste) into reusable bags to replace plastic bags and most importantly, start conversations”.

Find out if you have a Boomerang Bags community in your area and help out by making bags or holding workshops when you can. You can also donate material you no longer need.

It is a great initiative and has made a massive difference to the amount of single-use plastic and fabric ending up in landfill. It now has 800 communities worldwide! If your neighbourhood doesn’t have one, why not start one?

We’re all about actionable, workable solutions and passing these on to the community. This is how we’ll beat plastic pollution and make reusing the norm rather than our current disposable culture!

Here's how to make a reusable shopping bag by cutting up a shirt:

This DIY is fun for both adults and kids and easy enough for anyone to do! It is a great idea for a kids workshop. They get to do something crafty and have a reusable bag to take home to use.

Let us know if you end up making one! Even better - send us a photo! We would love to see your t-shirt bag creations.