Tuesday, March 27, 2012

How To : Recycled Denim Coil Basket

I am slowly making my way back to crafting and posting...lately I have been mostly crafting and I am ok with that. Must be the weather?  Well, this little number was inspired by two completely separate projects. The first being the coiled basket I made from torn vintage sheets and a pair of jeans I refashioned.  I thought enough ahead to take process photos, so I have a tutorial for you today! I haven't had one since before Christmas, wow some holiday eh?
Behold the scrap denim drawer. A collection of remnants from past projects and full pieces I have yet to utilize including two pairs of untouched jeans, a jacket and a mini skirt. I took out a bag of inseams and cuffs I had separated and began the project. Within just a couple of hours I had this basket, which has a seven inch diameter at the base and a twelve inch diameter at the top. The basket is nine inches high.

To make your own you will need:
Inseams and hems from several pairs of jeans
Waistband from one pair of jeans for handles (optional)
Back pocket from one pair of jeans (also optional)
Hot glue gun and a couple sticks of glue
Sewing machine
Denim needles (or size 14) more than two and denim has a tendency to warp needles.
One large spool of thread + two or three matching wound bobbins

Begin at the beginning...

Begin by taking a bottom hem piece and coiling it around itself. Adding hot glue along the seam as you roll. Don'y mind if the glue seeps out a bit as the arrows are showing it is hardly noticeable.
Continue adding pieces to your coil until it is a size you like (or you run out of hem pieces like I did.) As you can see I chose to keep the lumpier pieces where the hem and the seams met. You can leave them out for a smoother coil but I found by staggering them around the circle it all evened out in the end.
When you have finished coiling your base, add a piece of denim that is taller than the coils. Here I used a hem from a pair of men's shorts I had. But you can use a piece of denim cut to size. It is just to give your basket wall coils something to attach to.
Tip up your base so that the taller piece you added to the outside meets up with inseam piece under your presser foot exactly in the middle. Close up pictured below.
See how the base is under the presser foot as well as the first inseam piece? You need them to meet in the middle because you are going to use your widest zig zag stitch to join them together. Back stitch a couple stitches and big stitching.
When you have sewn your first coil around the base you will need to CONTINUOUSLY stitch up to the second row. Simply move your coil so that it crosses the bottom and begins a second row on its own.
When it is time to add another piece of inseam you just slide it under your foot and continue stitching. You might have to fiddle with it a little bit. And sometimes it might not line up perfectly, but for me it added to the charm. YOu might just need to go slower than I did. (I got more and more excited the closer I got to the end of the project.)
See? Holes. But I was okay with them. What I wasn't okay with was big holes between coil rows. So when I was done the basket I went back and sewed up any places that my zig zag stitched missed. (Glue would also work as there was one row that broke two needles on me before I just accepted it and moved on.)
For the handles I just snipped a couple pieces from a waistband and straight stitched them on. (The machine did not enjoy trying to zig zag stitch throw two+ layers of denim)
Because I wasn't going to sew this pocket on, I wanted to give it some stitch detail first. I like the royal blue stitching against the bright black denim.
Choose a side for your pocket (I chose the one that had one too many iffy spots) and affix with hot glue.
You are done. Now fill it with stuff and enjoy!

If you have questions please feel free to leave it in the comment section an I will answer it ASAP.
Thanks for stooping by!

3 comments:

Sally said...

Awesome!

Andrea Pereira said...

Divino!!!!Me encantó, lo voy a hacer. Gracias por compartir. :)

onmycreativeside said...

Just stumbled across your post and wanted to let you know how great the bag turned out! I've been working lately on a bunch of denim projects myself. One thing I did learn working with hems and seams is to always clip and toss the areas where the hems and seams cross and end up with many layers of fabric (very hard on needles!). Even though you may have more connections when sewing them together, if you don't overlap but rather butt the ends together, you have both a nicer, flatter pieces and you reduce the risk of broken needles (or the chance at breaking your sewing machine! - both of which I have managed while working with the denim.

Great tutorial too! Good attention to details!