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How to Make Handbags from Ties

written by: AngelaC•edited by: BStone•updated: 9/10/2010

It always seems like old neckties collect in the back of the closet forever. Handbags made from recycled ties are super trendy and making them yourself is a great way to make old ties into something new.

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    neckties Handbags made from recycled ties can range from a simple project using just 1 tie for a cute lipstick purse, to a more complicated, sophisticated and stylish handbag. By repurposing old ties you are extending the life of items you may have thought reached the end of their usefulness, while also providing a new item for someone else to enjoy.

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    Simple Purse Made From Recycled Ties

    This is a great purse for a beginner sewer or for a quick project. This little purse is perfect for holding just the essentials, such as keys, lipstick, and an ID. Another option is to leave off the strap and use it for a change purse or credit card holder. During the holidays use your old holiday ties and use this purse for gift giving.

    Items You Will Need:

    1 old tie

    Sewing machine

    Scissors

    Instructions:

    1) Take the old tie and lay it out flat. Fold the larger side of the tie up until you have the size purse you want. Keep in the mind that the bottom triangle of tie will serve as the flap.

    2) Cut the thin end off, leaving enough room to sew a seam.

    3) Sew a seam at the top so the fabric won’t fray.

    4) Sew the side seams.

    5) Turn the purse right side out.

    6) To make the strap, use the thin part of the tie that you cut off, and measure your desired length.

    7) Fold and stitch the ends the strap.

    8) Sew one end of the strap onto either side of your purse.

    9) Add a cute snap or velcro under the flap as a closure.

    10) Add any personalized decorations.

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    Stylish Handbags Made From Old Ties

    This sewing project is a little more advanced and requires the use of more ties. Try to reuse as many old ties as possible or purchase some from a thrift store if you need more. The size of this handbag can be adjusted to suit your needs and purpose.

    Items You Will Need:

    10 to 12 old ties

    Sewing machine

    Scissors

    Instructions:

    1) Lay the ties out in front of you and put together the look and pattern for your purse. Alternate the order of the ties, so that the large and small ends alternate when facing towards you. Lay out as many ties as you need to reach your desired size.

    2) Pin the ties together and flip the whole piece over.

    3) Slightly overlap the first two ties. Using a straight line or zig zag stitch sew two ties together down the long side. Add the next tie and repeat, continuing to sew the ties together down the long side until they are all sewed together.

    4) If desired, at this point you may also measure and sew on a fabric for the lining of your handbag to add durability.

    5) Fold the bottom half of the ties up to make the bag. Leave about 6 inches at the top of one side to fold over for the flap to close the bag. To adjust the size of your handbag, cut the fabric at the bottom side to your desired length and sew a seam to prevent fraying.

    6) Pin the sides of the bag and then sew each side shut, being careful to leave the top open.

    7) Turn your handbag right side out. Fold the flap over and using a low heat setting, gently iron in the crease for your flap closure.

    8) To make the strap, choose another tie.

    9) Cut and/or fold the tie to your desired length and shape. You can leave the strap larger at one end and smaller at the other for a more vintage tie shape, or fold and hem the tie until it is one unified shape.

    10) Pin one end of the tie strap under the flap inside the bag and then repeat on the other side.

    11) Sew the strap onto each side.

    12) Add a cute button, metal or magnetic snap under the flap for the closure.

    Handbags made from recycled ties can be a fun project for an afternoon or something you do on a regular basis. Get as creative as you want with the colors, patterns and decorative accessories. Make each handbag a personal representation of your skill and dedication to saving the earth, one tie at a time. If you just are interested in a recycled tie handbag, but are lacking in sewing skills, you can always find a great selection of repurposed, stylish bags at Etsy.com.

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    Resources

    Make: technology on your time: HOW TO - make a handbag out of ties - http://blog.makezine.com/archive/2006/07/how_to_make_a_handbag_out.html

    Wisebread: New Ideas for Old Neckties - http://www.wisebread.com/new-ideas-for-old-neckties

    Image Courtesy Of: WikiMedia Commons - Agata Kukałowicz