How to Make a Woven Basket With Old Jeans

4 Materials
4 Hours

You don’t know what to do with your old jeans? Here is an idea for recycling them: make a woven basket!

It’s easy, but it does take some time. It's totally worth it, though, because you'll end up with a nice, stylish weaved basket and, since you only used recycled materials, it'll be completely cost free (which is always a good thing in my opinion).

how to make a weaved basket with old denims

You will need some old denim jeans, a pair of scissors, a sewing machine, and a container to use as a model for your basket (I used a bucket).

how to make a weaved basket with old denims

Cut strips of jeans +/- 1″ wide and sew them end to end to make a long “ribbon”. You should have about 20 strips (as long as the pants you use) to make the base of the basket. The number of denim ribbons depends of the size of the basket you want to make. The bigger the basket is, the more strips for the base you will need. I started with 8 strips of fabric that I tied with a knot in the center.

how to make a weaved basket with old denims

Tie a knot with the ends of your “ribbon” in the center and start to weave. Pass the ribbon around the strips. Once above, once below ….

You weave until you have your desired size for the base of your basket. You must occasionally pull the strips to adjust weaving. Place the base on your model (bucket, bowl …) and continue to weave the sides of your basket. Depending of the size of the basket you want to make, you may have to add strips of fabric to properly weave the side of your basket. If the weaving is too loose, the basket won't stand by itself.

how to make a weaved basket with old denims

Once you have completed weaving, you have to finish the edge of the basket. You’ll attach the strips of fabric together by tying knots. Your basket is almost done. You can cut the extra strip lengths and fold them inside the basket. You can either sew or glue them to hold them inside.

how to make a weaved basket with old denims

Not too bad for a pair of old jeans! What do you think? If you're curious, I used two pairs of denim jeans to make this basket! If you still have some more pants to recycle, you can try to make a Denim rug.

Be sure to check my blog for more details and pictures.

Suggested materials:

  • Old denim
  • Scissors
  • Sewing machine
See all materials
Ama Ryllis

Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!


Have a question about this project?

3 of 5 questions
  • Denise Dome
    on Mar 13, 2019

    I am so totally confused! You said to cut the strips, I'm assuming the length of the pants would determine the length of the strips? Except you said to sew the strips together to make a ribbon. Are you using more than one pair of jeans? Is the ribbon the piece you use to weave and the 8 strips are totally separate and then you knot those together? Help! I love the project, it looks really cute! I just wanted to be sure of the instructions before I started cutting up my husbands pants!

    • Lisa
      on Mar 21, 2019

      OH!!!😲. Thx so much for clearing that up. I really had a blockage going there! 😹😹😹

  • Monica Obrien
    on Mar 20, 2019

    Yes, how do you know the strips together and not have a bulge? In the picture it’s flat? So I’m not sure how you tie them.

    • Susan
      on Mar 20, 2019

      I assumed that knot was on the inside, at the bottom of the basket.

  • Shana
    on Apr 10, 2019

    Is it possible get a video tutorial.

Join the conversation

4 of 30 comments
  • Minks7
    on Mar 25, 2019

    I would make a slit on two strips at one end.

    Run one strip through other slit then back through it’s own slit. No sewing no glueing. Continue till you have what you want. Makes it easy to attach additional strips for bigger basket. Keep making slits till done.

    • Diane
      on Mar 31, 2019

      She sewed the strips together so that you don't have to do something with the ends as each strip comes to an end and you have to start a new strip to continue your basket. Denim is a bulky material; if you were using more traditional basket making materials, you would weave the ends back in as you add a new strip like you do in knitting. By sewing all the strips together you eliminate the need to weave the ends back in which hides them and secures the weaving done with that strip. You could use a strong fabric glue to accomplish the same thing as the sewing just make sure that you let it dry completely before using the strip.

  • Tina Pugliano
    on Apr 6, 2019

    I am so trying this I got some jeans he doesn’t wear was wondering what to do with them

    • Darlene DeVore
      on Apr 16, 2019

      Tina, the top part of the jeans can be used to make a slouch bag. Sew the bottom closed with a close zigzag stitch. Measure from shoulder to hip add 4" double the length & cut a light weight rope or cord slip it through the belt loops starting at the back of the jeans. Tie simple overland knot at the shoulder. Thread a tapestry needle with some yarn or cord starting at the top of the zipper flap, stitch a crisscross pattern going either up or down to keep the zipper from opening. Makes a fun PJ bag for a sleep over or bathing suit, flipflops & sunscreen for a summer pool party or the beach. Great gift. I'm making one for my 10 year old niece in Florida. Hope you enjoy this additional craft.... Darlene😉

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