How to Turn Your Old Socks Into Reusable Shopping Bags

How to Turn Your Old Socks Into Reusable Shopping Bags

How to Turn Your Old Socks Into Reusable Shopping Bags


Reusing old materials to make new, useful items is a great way to reduce waste and get creative. One such eco-friendly DIY project is turning your old socks into reusable shopping bags. This easy craft allows you to give new life to worn-out socks that would otherwise end up in a landfill.

In this guide, I will walk you through the entire process of transforming old socks into sturdy, reusable bags that are perfect for shopping and storage. This project requires minimal time, effort, and materials – just some old socks, scrap fabric, scissors, needle and thread. Read on to learn all the steps for making your own sock bags from start to finish!

Gather Materials

To begin, you will need to gather the following materials:

  • Old socks – Crew socks, knee socks, or thigh high socks work best. Make sure they are clean and have no holes.

  • Scrap fabric – Scraps of cotton, felt, fleece, or recycled t-shirts will work nicely. This will be used for decorating and reinforcing the bags.

  • Needle and thread – Any needle and thread will work. Match the thread color to your scrap fabric and socks if possible.

  • Scissors

  • Ruler or tape measure – To measure the dimensions of your socks and fabric.

  • Pins – To hold the fabrics in place while sewing.

  • Iron – Useful for pressing seams flat.

That’s it for materials! The beauty of this project lies in its simplicity. Now let’s move on to preparing the socks.

Prep the Socks

Before constructing your bag, you need to prep the socks:

  • Select your socks – As mentioned, crew, knee high, and thigh high socks work best. In general, taller socks make larger bags.

  • Wash and dry the socks – It’s important they are clean before reusing them.

  • Turn them inside out – This hides the sock graphics and seams on the inside of the finished bag.

  • Iron the socks – Iron them flat so they are easier to work with. Pay extra attention to smoothing wrinkles on the foot part that will become the bottom of the bag.

Now your socks are ready to transform into reusable shopping bags!

Cut Fabric Pieces for the Bags

Using your ruler and scissors, you’ll need to cut out some pieces from your scrap fabric:

  • Bottom piece – Cut a rectangle as wide as the foot of the sock and 2-3 inches tall. This reinforces the bottom of the bag.

  • Side strips (2 per bag) – Cut rectangles the same height as the sock and 2-3 inches wide. These cover the side seams of the sock.

  • Handle – Cut a strap 2-3 inches wide by 10-15 inches long. Fold in half lengthwise.

  • Decorative fabric – Cut any size pieces you want for decorating the bags. Get creative!

Construct the Bags

With your materials prepped, it’s time for the fun part – sewing it all together! Follow these steps:

Sew the Bottom

  1. Pin the bottom rectangle piece to the foot of the sock, right sides facing.

  2. Sew along the edges, leaving an opening to turn it right side out later.

  3. Trim seam allowance and corners. Turn the sock right side out.

Sew the Sides

  1. Match the side strips to the sock’s side seams, pinning in place.

  2. Sew down both sides. Trim seams and turn right side out. Press with an iron.

Add the Handle

  1. Pin the ends of the handle to the right sides of the sock, one handle on each side.

  2. Sew the handles in place along the top edge.

Decorate (Optional)

  1. Now get creative with fabric shapes, stitches, buttons, applique, or other decorative details!

And that’s it – you now have a completed reusable sock bag! Just repeat the process to transform all your old socks into a set of eco-friendly shopping bags.

Helpful Tips and Variations

Here are some useful tips and tweaks as you make your sock bags:

  • Stabilize handles – Encase handle seam allowances with bias tape or fabric strips for reinforcement.

  • Line the bags – Use a cotton fabric remnant to sew a lining for extra strength and structure.

  • Shape the bottom – Add triangular darts at the bottom edges for a box bag bottom.

  • Waterproof them – Use a fabric like oilcloth if you want water-resistant bags for groceries.

  • Size them – Scale up or down depending on the sock size and your purposes.

  • Pair socks – Sew two socks together at the tops to make extra large bags.

Now that you’re armed with all the instructions and tips for reusing old socks as shopping bags, let your creativity run wild! This easy upcycle project is great for crafters of all skill levels. Not only will you keep socks out of landfills, but you’ll also end up with sturdy, custom bags for all your needs.


Turning old socks into reusable shopping bags takes a few simple steps, basic materials, and a bit of creativity. By repurposing worn socks instead of throwing them away, you give them new life while reducing waste. The result is a set of handy bags that are washable, durable, and endlessly customizable with fun fabrics and decorations. I hope you’re inspired to gather some old socks and get crafting after reading this DIY sock bag tutorial! Let me know if you come up with any unique variations on these eco-friendly, budget-friendly bags.