Up-cycled denim peg bag tutorial ... and why I've been absent of late.

8 November 2016

A friend calls, a friend I've known for many, many years, around thirty years, he needs some help. Having just returned home from an extended time grey-nomading around our country, he needs some basic supplies to set up home again. A peg bag and a plastic bag holder. The plastic bag holder's easy. I've made heaps of them. More than heaps. But, I haven't made a peg bag before, so it's time for some thinking and a tutorial, of course.

As always, I spent a few nights stewing over a design.

Pinterest gave me some inspiration which you can see from the last few pins on my sewing board. My problem with many of the designs I pinned was that the opening to grab the pegs from was not large enough for a man's hand. And many of the designs were just too dainty. This needed to be a "real-man" peg bag. Manly, sturdy, durable, tough.

And then it came to me. What is manly, sturdy, durable, tough?? 

Denim, of course. Recycled ... up-cycled, whichever you prefer, denim.

But what about the design? 

My collection of old denim jeans gave me the solution.

I gathered together an old pair of jeans, one leg of which I had already plundered for another project, a swivel snap hook and a wire circle (both from Spotlight) and some shade cloth (an off-cut I bought from Bunnings for a steal).

The wire circle could easily be made from a wire coat hanger, but I didn't have one.

Note to self 1: When you need to buy shade cloth, always ask about off-cuts. They can be huge and are sooo cheap.

Note to self 2: Keep a couple of wire coat hangers in your stock pile.

Time to start.

My wire circle's circumference determined that I needed to use the top section of the jeans' leg. I wanted the wire circle to fit snuggly into the circumference of the jeans' leg.

I took a bit of a guess and cut an 11 inch (28cm) section (in hindsight this was too long, 9½ to 10 inches {23-25cm} would have been plenty).

Next, I decided to use some of the waistband of the jeans for my peg bag handle. I cut as close as possible to the waistband and used a 24 inch (60cm) section. I was happy to include the button part as I thought it added a bit of interest.

Initially, I also hoped to include the belt loops for a bit more style, but I found the swivel snap hook would not go over them, so off they came with the quick-un-pick.

Next was the base. I imagined this peg bag being left out in the weather on the clothes line, so I wanted any rain to be able to quickly drain through, allow the pegs to dry and lessen the process of deterioration over time.

Shade cloth was the answer. I only needed around 10 inches (25cm), but the friendly Bunnings assistant pointed me in the direction of the off-cuts and, for very little money, I have enough shade cloth for a gazillion peg bags or the start of my veggie garden when we get home. Soon, very soon!

I cut a circle to suit the base of the jeans' leg section. Well, sort of a circle.

Flipped the jeans' leg section inside out and pinned the shade cloth circle in place. I wasn't too precious about this. It's a peg bag, not a wedding dress.

I stitched the shade cloth and denim together with a small seam and overlocked the edge.

Then flipped everything right side out.

It was looking good so far.

Now to the top edge. This is where I wanted to insert my wire circle to create a real-man size opening.

I overlocked the top edge, then turned it down over the wire circle and pinned.

I positioned my waistband strip ends on opposite sides of the opening and carefully stitched the top edge down. I used my favourite triple stitch when I reached each waistband strip to secure them firmly.

I didn't like the way the waistband strips, now handles, sat.

I thought they looked a bit ordinary, so I carefully pinned the wire circle away from the top of the bag.

And topstitched the handles in place for a neater finish.

And, ta dah, my manly-sturdy-durable-tough up-cycled real-man denim peg bag was done.

See those orange pegs at the top? They're called Hegs. If you don't have some of them in your peg bag, you need some. 100% Australian designed and made.

See those little hooks on the side? They are the trick. Hang your strappy tops. Hang your bras. Double hang and double up your clothesline space. I bought mine at Woolieworths and I love them, but have a look here for the full goss and to buy online, if you like.

And I know your wondering ... what about the plastic bag holder?

Well, to keep in the recycle, up-cycle mode, I added a touch of denim to it too ... and some fish for a man who loves to fish.

So, that's it. Mission accomplished and into the post to head north.

But, I hear you ask, why have I been absent of late? 

Well, there's been short trip home to the Gold Coast, a grand-daughter's christening, lots of paperwork and planning for MLP's retirement (Soon, very soon.), a caravan to pick up (Yes, we finally have our van.) and life. 

Sometimes life is a little too busy for time to blog. 

My blogging could be a tad inconsistent over the next few weeks, moving home could keep me a bit preoccupied, but I'll be on Facebook and Instagram if you would like to keep in touch.

Do you know someone who needs
manly-sturdy-durable-tough up-cycled real-man peg bag in their life?

Have you done some denim recycling, up-cycling that I need to know about?

Have you tried Hegs? 

Catch up again soon,

This guy was in the trees by the lake on our short trip home to the Gold Coast.
Cute, hey?

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