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25+ upcycle sewing tutorials that make great gifts

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25+ upcycle sewing tutorials that make great giftsThere are lots of reasons to try and make gifts from upcycled materials, whether you want to save money, avoid buying excess packaging, or add a personalized touch by using a loved one’s old clothes. I rounded up a bunch of upcycle sewing tutorials that I think would make great gifts to hopefully inspire you to give the gift of upcycled handmade this year! Please let me know if you have any other favorites I should add to the list.

Need more gift inspiration?

Don’t just upcycle your gift, upcycle the packaging too, with one of these 15+ fabric wrapping paper alternatives!

If you decide you’d rather gift something handmade instead of giving a kit to handmade something, check out this list of 20+ upcycled gift ideas to buy!

If you don’t have time to browse now, pin this list of upcycle gift sewing sewing tutorials with this link or collage image! Please click through to pin individual images from their original sites:

upcycle sewing gift ideas

Upcycle sewing tutorials that make great gifts

christmas present upcycle sewing tutorial crayon roll

Sew some upcycled crayon holders with this diy tutorial here at Swoodson Says! These are super fast to make.

Sweet little upcycled baby shoe tutorial from Heather Handmade.

refashioned purse tutorial

You could do this with any tote or pouch pattern; turn an old leather coat into a bag! Check out how I made this simple tote, with the upcycled bag tutorial here on my site.

upcycled button up shirt book cover

Check out this tutorial that upcycles a button up shirt into a book cover! Shared on The Sewing Directory.

Star bean bag pattern pdf free

Beanbags are so fun for toddlers and young kids! Chop up your old jeans and sew some star shaped ones, free pattern here on my site.

A super clever old swimsuit/athleticwear upcycle – make splash balls for the pool or bathtub! Tutorial at Cucicucicoo.

women's leggings into scrunchie

Upcycle your old leggings into scrunchies! See how to sew a scrunchie here on my site, with a size for little kids and adults.

upcycled backpack tutorial

Upcycled tshirt to backpack tutorial from Heather Handmade, this is perfect for toting treasures!

The easy way to turn a t shirt into a pillow

Turn any tshirt into a cozy pillow! This is perfect for band or sports shirts too; I made a holiday version and shard the tutorial here on my site.

how to sew a wrist pincushion

Technically this is no sew but it is upcycled and uses fabric scraps so I’m including it! See how to make a wrist pincushion over at Heather Handmade.

upcycled tshirt ornament craft

See how to upcycle an old tshirt into an ornament and give a fun personalized gift this year!

Such a fun idea, Alicia turned old baby clothes into a DIY quiet book, what a fun baby gift.

refashioned sweater into hat

Sew a cozy hat from an old sweater! I have a tutorial here, no pattern necessary, on my site.

A cozy winter project; turn an old sweater into a mug cozy with this tutorial at Vicky Myers Creations.

upcycled softie tutorial t rex from tshirt

Sew some super cheap stuffed animals with this tshirt upcycle project here on my site!

denim rag quilt diy

Who doesn’t want a nice thick quilt to cuddle under! This is super simple, a diy rag quilt tutorial from Frugal Family Times.

how to make handmade hand warmers

Handwarmers from wool sweaters are super cozy and quick to sew! I have two styles and a free pattern here on my site.

No fabric necessary, use old shopping bags and create simple zipper pouches, love this idea from Too Much Love.

handmade gift for teen tween

Who doesn’t love getting plants as presents! Stick them in a cute upcycled denim planter, see how to make it here on my site.

A sweet vintage linen upcycle, turn them into a knitting needle holder with this simple tutorial from Mom Advice.

upcycled old jean christmas craft

If you have a friend who loves ornaments, make them a fun little felt house out of jeans pockets! Get the free ornament pattern here on my site.

upcycled baby blanket tutorial

Turn all those old receiving blankets into a toddler quilt with this sewing tutorial from Scratch and Stitch!

upcyced flannel quilt

Or use up flannel shirts and turn them into a quilt too! Tutorial here on Swoodson Says.

Turn an old tie into a zipper pouch with this sewing tutorial from Polkadot Chair.

Perfect for big kids, make a memory matching game from old jeans! If you don’t do vinyl, use a stencil or more fabric scraps instead, see the upcycled toy tutorial here on my site.

Upcycled wool sweater mittens are so fun and this pattern looks like a really nice fit, find it and the tutorial at Make and Do Crew.


Turn socks with holes into a DIY upcycled coffee cozy

Turn an old sock into a DIY upcycled coffee cozy with some sweet felt hearts and a few stitches!

dog bone shaped stocking pattern

Last but not least, this is a pattern for sale as opposed to a free tutorial but super cute dog bone shaped stocking upcycled from a button up shirt! There is a cat option too, by Tie Dye Diva sewing patterns.


Another big project? An upcycled applique quilt! I made this for our family friends and I miss it, find the pattern I used linked and more details in this post.

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Tuesday 19th of November 2019

Thanks for including my quilt. This is a great round-up to be included in. I think about your upcycled leather jacket bag maybe more than I should :) I recently scored a second-hand faux leather jacket with a fun lining print that should probably be turned into a bag like yours.

West Coast Mom

Tuesday 19th of November 2019

What great ideas!

Stephanie - Swoodson Says

Tuesday 7th of January 2020

thank you!

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