If you love the idea of crafting and being creative with fabrics but don’t have the dexterity or the skills for sewing, there is still so much you can do.
Crafting and sewing do take a lot of skill and you may spend time scrolling through Pinterest projects thinking “How on earth can anyone make that?!”
If you have zero skills when it comes to sewing, let me let you in on a little secret: fabric adhesives. These can either be glues or iron-on tapes but they are an absolute game-changer. They will let you skip the sewing and help you to fly through your craft projects.
This is especially true when it comes to sustainable crafting.
Creating entirely new items out of old clothing, bedding, or even old crafts is a great way to be creative without increasing your environmental footprint.
So, if you have an old pair of jeans that are too old to be worn but not nice enough to go to the thrift store, you’re probably wondering if you can do something creative with them. And the answer is yes, yes you absolutely can!
One thing that we’re all being encouraged to do is to limit the amount of fast fashion we buy into. Fast fashion is terrible for the environment, can exploit workers, and is generally just unnecessary.
So, before you decide to throw those jeans in the trash, take a look at these no-sew projects that might just allow you to upcycle them into something even better.
One option is to turn your old jeans into denim patches. Simply take a few stencils, draw around them on the jeans, and then cut them out.
You can draw on them or style them however you like and then attach them to other jackets, to cushion covers, bags, or whatever fabric you like.
The edges will fray a little as they haven’t been sewn, but this will add to the look.
The patches can be attached using fabric glue, fabric tape, or an iron-on adhesive.
Okay, so this one is a sustainability double-whammy. This project reuses the back pockets of jeans as cutlery pouches.
One of the most popular sustainable products is bamboo cutlery. Bamboo cutlery sets are reusable but are much easier to carry around than the standard silverware in your kitchen drawer.
Bamboo cutlery sets are intended to replace plastic cutlery that you would usually use on a picnic or at a cookout.
So, to make this super easy cutlery pouch, you just need your jeans, a strong pair of scissors, some adhesive fabric tape, and something to tie it up.
Here are the simple steps to making a cutlery pouch:
All you need to do is cut around the stitching of the back pocket, but leave about three inches at the top. This can either be in a rectangular shape or a triangle (like an envelope), but we recommend the triangle.
Take the adhesive fabric tape and place it along the edges of that extra piece of fabric, about a quarter-inch or so in. Then, fold the edges of the fabric over so that they cover the fabric and iron. This will keep the edges from fraying and make the pouch sturdier. It should look like a standard hem.
And there you go! As you’re using a back pocket, all of the sewing has already been done for you. Now you can take whatever you have chosen as a tie (some ribbon, a few pieces of twine, anything long and thin will do) and wrap and tie it around.
If you like, you can use the fabric adhesive (a glue will work best) to attach one end of the tie to the back of the pouch. Alternatively, you can place some adhesive in the middle and attach it to the back. This will allow you to tie the pouch up at the front. The choice is entirely yours.
If your jeans are really worn and damaged, then this is a great project as you can just cut and rip them apart.
You don’t have to despair if your jeans have a terrible rip in them as this craft requires you to rip them even more.
This project does involve some thread but don’t worry, there’s still no sewing involved. You’re also going to need a needle and some scissors.
Embroidery scissors would be best as they are gentler on the thread but whatever kind you have will be fine.
Here are the easy steps to making denim tassels:
Cut out a piece of denim to your desired length. This will depend on what you’re using the tassel to decorate. But, if you’re just trying it out, use a piece that is 4”x4”.
This next step will take a while. Start filling at one of the frayed edges and, once you have a single piece of thread, keep pulling that until the weave has come out. The result you want is for the horizontal thread to have come out, leaving the vertical threads and denim material.
Stop when you have about half an inch left at the top. Then roll the denim up until it resembles a tassel.
When you have the perfect tassel shape, take a piece of thread and thread it through a needle. Then (don’t worry, this is the only “sewing” you need to do), tie a knot at the end of the thread, and pass one stitch through the thick top of the denim.
Now start wrapping the thread around the thick top of the material. Keep going until the entire top is covered (or is as covered as you want it to be). Then pass the needle underneath the wound thread and tie a knot at the end.
So, there you have it, just a few of the many great crafty things you can do with an old pair of jeans (and no proper sewing required).