Packing Cube From Old Dress Shirt

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I'm a marine scientist that also loves woodworking and DIY

Packing cubes can help turn a disorganized travel bag into an easy-to-use bag. I find packing cubes to be immensely helpful when traveling. I can use them to keep dress clothes separate from casual clothes, dirty clothes separate from clean clothes, or different purposed clothes separate if I'm on a multi-leg trip. Here's how you can convert an old dress shirt into a packing cube that fits your exact size needs.

Step 1: Gather Materials and Tools

Find an old button-front dress shirt. It can be one that's got a stain, a tear in a sleeve, or you just don't plan to wear anymore.

Other materials:

  • Thread

Tools:

  • Scissors
  • Sewing Machine or Needle

Step 2: Measure

Figure out how big to make the packing cube. Note: this isn't a true 'cube'.

I chose to make mine just a bit bigger than the size I fold my t-shirts so that I can stack a few of them inside. You may want to make yours different dimensions. Some ideas include the dimensions of a carry-on rolling bag or fractions thereof (eg, half the length so you can fit two side by side)

Step 3: Cut

Turn the shirt inside out so buttons fasten flat at the edge. Imagine folding a piece of paper in half and do the same thing with the shirt.

Cut the shirt while buttoned about four inches longer than your desired dimension from the buttons to the opposite end and about four inches longer than your desired dimension along the length of the buttons. This will produce a final 'cube' that is about 3-3.5 inches tall. For example if I wanted my final cube to be 12 inches long by 6 inches wide, I would cut the fabric to be 16 inches long and 10 inches wide.

Step 4: Sew Edges

Flip the fabric inside out. Undo the buttons.

Sew along each length about 1/4 inch from the edge. Do not sew the edge with the buttons.

Flip the fabric so that it is right side out.

If extra strength is desired, sew along each length about 1/8 inch from the edge. Again, do not sew the edge with the buttons.

Step 5: Pack the Cube and Go!

Fill the cube with clothes, button it up, toss it into your bag, and go travel the world!

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Travel Contest 2017

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    5 Discussions

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    dfabian

    1 year ago

    Nice!

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    spark master

    1 year ago

    small pillows anyone? Take the sleeves and make lumbar pillows for the car or neck. Old pantaloon legs work well too, plus take the top part and make a ruck sack. These are old craft ideas, I wish I could claim ownership!

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    LarryLauraW

    1 year ago

    Great idea! I have a trip coming up, will definitely use this idea.

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    mrsmerwin

    1 year ago

    wow--simple but brilliant. I have several dress shirts from my husband. I can't turn them all into a quilt. This is perfect. My son's want to camp all the time. Now I can help them pack their backpacks efficiently. Thanks.