Tutorial — Apple Printed Lunch Sack from Old Jeans

We are still finding new uses for that box of old jeans from my dad. They make great drawstring lunch sacks! My sewing machine is by no means heavy-duty, but it didn’t have any problems sewing through two layers of denim.

To make your own lunch sack from an old pair of jeans, cut off one of the legs and cut down the seam to make a single layer of denim. Now, trim the edges to make them nice and even. You should end up with a piece of denim about 7″ x 22″.

I ran the two long seams through the serger, but you can use a zig zag stitch on a regular sewing machine instead. Next, roll the top and bottom hems over 1/2″, then another 1/2″. Pin into place, and top stitch along the edge. This is the casing for the drawstring.

Now, use an apple and some fabric paint to make a print on a piece of light-colored fabric. Allow to dry. We used a potato stamper in the shape of a leaf for the leaf-print.
Fold the edges of the apple print and pin into place on the lunch sack.
Use a zig-zag stitch on all four sides to attach the apple print.
Fold the fabric in half so the right sides are facing, as shown. Pin along the side seams. Stitch the side seam by starting at the bottom of the bag and finishing just before the drawstring casing. Stitch along the sides twice, so the bag holds up against a year’s worth of school abuse!
With the bag still inside out, open up the corners and mark 1″ from the corner as shown. This will be for the flat-bottom of the bag. Stitch along this line.

Pull the bag right-side out and the bottom corners should look like this!
Add your drawstring by attaching a safety pin to some leftover laundry line and threading it a little at a time through the drawstring casing.
Lunch is starting to look a whole lot better!
You might also want to check out the DIY: 2-in-1 Sandwich Wrap and Placemat. Combined, they are perfect for back-to-school!


  1. Dear Valerie,

    Don't go too crazy! We only have two children, and I would like all of my jeans to stay pants.


  2. Very cute. Maybe someday I'll be able to do that. Maybe.

    Time to go shopping and buy new jeans, Mark!

  3. very cute! I still don't know how to sew, or work a sewing machine for that matter πŸ™ And I love Mark's comment haha!

  4. @ Mark — Have you seen the box of jeans my dad gave me? It's an endless supply! BTW, you could probably use some new jeans anyway.

    @ Christy — I know you'll be able to make these! How are you liking your new machine?

  5. @ Sherry — Maybe you can sign up for the next session of our Sewing in Baby Steps workshop? I'd love to have you join us!

  6. Love it Valerie! I have a few pairs that will be ready for recycling shortly and these looks to all be straight stitches. I think even I can handle that!

  7. This looks great! I have some old jeans and might give it a try. Hope you are well and I'll be back soon to catch up with the rest of your latest posts πŸ™‚

  8. shraddha/april@theselfloveproject says

    ooh looks awsome…

    good job..


  9. Stephanie Griffith says

    So cute! I'm going to start sneaking the beat-up jeans out of Zach's laundry basket and using them for crafts. He does welding and they have serious wear and tear issues.

  10. What a wonderful idea.

  11. Nadia@FunWithMama says

    so simple! πŸ™‚ love that it was actually made with a real apple prin

  12. Valerie, this is adorable, and I love the fact that you made the apple print using a real apple!

    Mark's comments are hilarious =)

  13. I don't think I'm close to being at this level yet, but I want to make something like this. I need to get fabric paint so I can stamp names and sayings on stuff. I love that idea!

  14. Val in the Rose Garden says

    Stinkin CUTE! You are incredible!

    Are you going to post the mobile? I keep waiting for the craft-fail post. πŸ˜‰


  15. You should have your own television show! I noticed the sandwich wrapper and placemat right away. That's really a cute lunch sack. Would make a cute backpack too if changed the stringy thingy, right? πŸ™‚

  16. Love this. Once I actually get sewing, I'll have to give this a try and that crayon wallet too.

  17. Wow, this is great! I love it.

  18. Lenetta @ Nettacow says

    Yay you for getting featured on Tipnut!!! Whoo hoo!


  1. […] the frugal family, packing a lunch is a must. Here’s a tutorial to make your own apple printed lunch sack from a pair of old […]