Did you see my recent blog post on a recycled fabric collaboration? It’s available for sale: a DIY sustainable tote bag kit with all the sustainable sewing vibes.
*UPDATE 5 JAN 2020: BAG STRAPS ARE BEING RESTOCKED AND NAVY OR LIGHT DENIM COLOURWAYS ARE AVAILABLE (TEAL IS SOLD OUT)*
Here’s are a few pics from those who have made the navy version (reposted with their permission). I love the sashiko on Wilma’s one, and also the minimalist vibes of Annie and Alex’s ones!
And here’s my sewing bestie Alex @sewrendipity who tested the pattern, she also made the navy.
- Netherlands: €59 plus €6 tracked shipping – total €65
- Rest of EU: €59 plus €9 tracked shipping – total €68
- UK: £51 plus £9 tracked shipping – total £60
Payment is via bank transfer – there is no webshop at this moment seeing as quantities of these kits are so limited. If you live outside these locations please email me (firstname.lastname@example.org) if you’d like a price/shipping quote in your local currency.
Full list of what’s included
0.5m fabric for the body and 0.35m chambray lining – each containing a proportion of recycled cotton/denim. Also: upcycled leather bag straps and leather “me made” label; organic cotton sewing thread; 2x sewing machine needles; interfacing and rivets for attaching the straps. A digital copy of the pattern via email.
What is sustainable about this?
Want to balance sewing in a more sustainable way, whilst still having fresh fabric and sewing nice things that are actually useful? Me too. So I came up with this:
1. Recycled fabric
The fabric is woven by Annemieke of micro mill Enschede Textielstad in the Netherlands. It is a blend of recycled cotton or denim, together with wool, viscose and virgin cotton. This fabric is not available to buy anywhere else and not available in yardage form. You can read more about it here.
2. Upcycled leather
Naomi Rachèl Timan is a Dutch bag designer and exclusively upcycles leather from old unwanted furniture. The leather straps for this kit are hand made. Together we chose pieces of leather to match the fabrics, then cut and sewed the straps in her studio with her antique industrial leather sewing machine. This is anything but your average leather straps from an online shop! Note that some straps are pieced together – this is due to the size of the pieces of leather available. PS – the leather labels are also upcycled, hand-stamped and hand-cut.
3. Zero-waste sewing pattern
I wrote a bag pattern especially to go with the fabrics, with step by step photo instructions (no printing required as you measure the pieces as shown in the cutting layout). It is designed to leave you minimal to no scraps by the time you finish sewing and makes the best use of the different colours in the fabric on the front and back. The bag fits an A4 notebook, laptop, purse, water, pockets and has lots of different design options. Sewing wise it is not difficult but it needs careful cutting and handling. Thus I would not recommend it as a first sewing project.
Some final pictures
So you can see the details (including the inside pocket) and the light denim fabric colourway.
Can I buy the fabric in yardage form?
No, the fabric is available only via this kit. This is so you can try the fabric in small quantities without waste to make a finished useful project, and allows me to keep the price point reasonable.