Skip to main content

Upcycle a t-shirt into a tote bag with Rosie Ramsey

Rosie meets Bridget – Workshop Leader at The Big Skill in Wales. The Big Skill provide a huge number of Recycle, Repair and Redesign workshops for people in the community, encouraging people to upcycle their old items and improve their carbon footprint.

Watch the video and follow the instructions below to find out how you can upcycle an old t-shirt into a reusable tote bag.


  • An old T-shirt
  • Sharp scissors


  1. Lay your T-shirt out flat on the table. Cut off the hem at the bottom, the sleeves and around the neck.
  2. Keeping the T-shirt flat on the table, cut a fringe along the bottom edge about 8cm deep and 1cm wide. If you cut through the two layers at the same time, you will know that you have an even number of fringes.
  3. Cut up the middle of the two end fringe pieces to make them even in width.
  4. Starting at one end, tie the corresponding fringe pieces together. Taking one from the front and the matching one from the back, tie with a double knot, pulling firmly.
  5. Cut 6 strips of fabric from the sleeves, approx. 20cm long. Two of these want to be approx. 2cm wide with the other four being 1cm wide.
  6. Take one of the wider strips and tie it in a bow around the shoulder seam of the T-shirt (now the handle of the bag). Then do the same to the other side.
  7. The other four strips are used to tie around the base of the handles. Gather the fabric at the base of the handle, then tie a strip around tightly.

Ta-dah! You've got a tote bag! Don't forget to take it with you next time you pop to the shops!

All Good Causes