1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 Maiden Jane: Wednesday Sewing - Swim Trunks to Drawstring Tote

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Wednesday Sewing - Swim Trunks to Drawstring Tote

I can't stand throwing things away.  When my son's bathing suit's elastic gave out, I bought him a new bathing suit. (That's because I don't know a seamstress who can change out the elastic.....) 

Although the material was bleached-out, I thought it would make a sturdy drawstring bag.  Something to grab for gym class or a quick trip to the pool.

So here's a quick tutorial on how to make one.  

1. Cut along leg seams and up along center front and back seams.

2. You have created two pieces of fabric.

3. Remove the waistband and inner mesh.

4. Square up (or rectangular up) the top and sides.

5. Use this piece as a pattern to cut the second piece.

6. Sew or serge around three sides leaving the top open.  (I was so excited to try this that I didn't think about how I usually make a drawstring bag - which is to start and stop sewing 2" from the top to leave room for a casing.)

7. Finish the top fabric by serging or folding over 1/4" and sewing.

8. Make a buttonhole 1.5" below the top near each side seam. Use stabilizer under the buttonhole.

9. Fold down the fabric and stitch around to form casing.

10. Use twill tape for the drawstring.

Measure four times the width across.  Cut in half to create two drawstrings.

Thread one through and knot on one side.

Do the same on the other side!

This would work well as a drawstring backpack also!  I'll try that with the next pair!


  1. Hi,

    Great project for boys!! I love it and I'll try it to my nephews. Thanks for Tutorial.

    Hugs from Portugal
    Ana Love Craft


  2. OMG!! I as just looking at a pair of thrift store swim pants a couple of weeks ago that I really loved the design & was wishing I could figure out how to make a bag out of it - now I wish I'd bought it, because I REALLY love your bag! THis would be such a great bag for the boys to take when they go swimming! Thanks for the tutorial!

  3. I absolutely love the bag. But I think it might have been quicker to put in new elastic. Next time I'm at the thrift store I'm going to have to look for a pair of pocket trunks or shorts to make myself one of these. Poppy makes bags that have loops sewn in the bottom, and longer ties. The tie for each side goes to a loop at the bottom. That way it can be used as a backpack too.

  4. <3 this project. Thanks for linking up the Upcycled Linky Party at http://love2upcycle.blogspot.com/2013/08/upcycled-linky-party-20.html.

  5. Oh this is genius! I love it - and have a couple of pairs of old boardshorts in my stash to be upcycled I'm going to try this with!
    I would love if you came and linked this project to my clothes upcycling project page. It has a long term linky, so your project would stay there for more than just the week of a usual linky. We have over 500 projects linked up now – some fantastic ideas.
    Do come and take a look!



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