For our family the highlight of any camping trip is the time spent sitting around the fire roasting hotdogs and marshmallows. A good s'more is truly a treat. However, for me, keeping track of the roasting sticks is a problem. Plastic bags don't hold them well and tear quickly. And tying them together makes it difficult for the kids to get them out. So, before we headed out on our last camping trip I quickly whipped up a no-cost bag that works great. And, the best part? I made it from a pair of old jeans that were about to be thrown out. I like to re-use and re-purpose. Here's the step-by-step on how you can make a pant leg bag of your own.
Step 1: Supplies -
To make this little bag, you will need the following:
- Old jeans
- Sewing Machine (or lots of time to hand-sew)
- Safety pin
And, if you want to decorate your bag, which is optional, you will also need:
- Paint brush
- Foam Alphabet Stamps
Step 2: Measure and Cut
- Lay your jeans out flat and place your roasting stick on the pant leg.
- Measure about three inches above the top of the roasting stick and cut straight across.
Step 3: The Bottom
- Next, sew the bottom of your pant leg closed. You could turn the thing inside out and all that, but I didn't. I liked the hem of the jean showing. Also, the type of the stitch doesn't really matter, you could do a straight stitch or a zig-zag. I went for the zag, it was fancier.
Step 4: Top of Bag
- Once the bottom is sewn closed, turn the pant leg inside out.
- At the opening, fold the fabric down. It's a good idea to measure so that it is folded down at an equal distance all around the opening. I measured about 1 & 1/2 inches down.
- Next, pin the fold down.
Tip: Normally you'd do a rolled hem, which means you'd fold it twice, ironing it with each fold, you know - the whole schabang. You can do that if you wish but because I was working with denim I folded it once. It fit my needs.
- Once you have it folded down and pinned, sew all the way around the opening to secure the fold in place. You want to sew close to the raw edge making sure that you are leaving a good size distance in between the stitching/raw edge and the top of the opening. Your ribbon will go in that space so make sure you plan accordingly.
Step 5: Adding the Drawstring
- Next, remove all pins and turn bag inside-out again. The right-side of your fabric should be showing.
- Carefully cut a slit on each side of the bag. I did mine near each of the side seams. You want each slit to be in-between the edge of the opening and the hem you just sewed.
Warning: Don't cut through the hem.
- Cut two long pieces of ribbon and thread them through each side of the hem. The easiest way to do this is to attach one end of your ribbon to a safety pin and push the pin through the space in between the hem and the edge of the opening. As you push the pin, your ribbon will pull through the space.
- Once threaded through, your ribbon will be sticking out on both sides of your bag. Tie the edges together with a simple knot.
Step 6: Drawstring Complete
- Once your ribbon has been threaded through and tied off on each end, you'll have something that looks like this. You could stop here as your bag is complete and useable. However, for organization purposes, I labeled my bag. The following steps will show you how.
Step 7: Alpha Stamps and Paint
- Gather your supplies. You will need paint, a paint brush, and some foam alphabet stamps.
- Paint each letter of the word you are spelling and then stamp onto the paint leg.
Tip: If you have fabric paints on hand, use those. They will work better and allow you to wash your bag with minimal fading. I didn't have those, so I just used acrylic craft paint.
Step 8: The Results
- Once you have your word stamped on, you are pretty much done. Just put the roasting sticks in the bag, close it up with the drawstring and head for the hills!
Step 9: Completed Bag
And, there you have it. That is how you make a camping bag out of a pant leg from old jeans. It really is the perfect thing for holding roasting sticks. Plus, because it's so quick and easy, you could make multiple bags to hold other items as well. This will help you keep everything organized and accessible while you are out and about enjoying nature!