upcycling old grocery bags into handbag

Unleash Your Creativity: Upcycling Old Grocery Bags Into Stunning Handbags

This sewing tutorial is all about transforming used plastic bags into something new and stylish. Here are the key points we’ll cover:

  • How to prepare the grocery bags for upcycling
  • Step-by-step instructions to sew the handbag
  • Creative ways to decorate your one-of-a-kind bag

Sounds interesting? Let’s get started!

Preparing the Grocery Bags

The first step is to gather a bunch of used plastic grocery bags. How many you need depends on the desired size of your handbag. Around 60-80 bags should be enough for a medium-sized purse.

Once you have the bags, you’ll need to cut off the handles and bottom seams. This will leave you with flat plastic sheets to work with.

Sewing the Handbag

Sewing the Handbag
Photo credit: freepik

Now for the fun part – actually sewing the bag! Here are the steps:

Making the Bag Body

  1. Lay out the plastic sheets and start joining them together by sewing the edges.
  2. Keep adding sheets until you have a large rectangular piece for the bag body.
  3. Fold this rectangle in half and sew along the sides to create the main bag compartment.

Adding the Base

  1. Cut out a square or rectangle from leftover sheets for the bag base.
  2. Sew this piece to the bottom of the bag’s body.

Creating the Handles

  1. Cut long strips from the remaining plastic for the bag handles.
  2. Sew or braid these strips together until you have two sturdy handle pieces.
  3. Attach the handles securely to the bag body.

Decorating Your Bag

With the basic structure complete, it’s time to get creative! You can decorate your upcycled handbag in all sorts of fun ways:

  • Use permanent markers or fabric paints to add designs and patterns
  • Sew on beads, buttons, patches, or other decorations
  • Weave different colored plastic strips into the bag body

The options are endless to make your handbag totally unique!


What materials do I need to upcycle grocery bags into a handbag?

You’ll need a collection of used plastic grocery bags, scissors, a sewing machine, thread, and any decorative items like beads or paints.

How many grocery bags are required to make a medium-sized handbag?

Around 60-80 plastic bags should be sufficient to create a medium-sized upcycled handbag.

Can I use different types of bags besides grocery bags for this project?

Yes, you can experiment with upcycling other plastic bags like produce bags or bread bags too.


There you have it – all the steps to turn those old grocery bags into a fashionable, one-of-a-kind purse! Not only is it an awesome way to reuse plastic, but you’ll end up with a special bag you designed yourself. Why not gather some friends and have an upcycling sewing party? Let me know how your handbag projects turn out!


Main image: freepik

Priti Nandy
Priti Nandy
Articles: 285

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