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September 3, 2014

recycled coin purse

As I said in my last post, this fused plastic trick is something that I picked up in high school. Working with this material again reminded me of my earlier crafting days when everything I made was some kind of hardcore repurposing. Me & my crafty feminist friends repurposed everything we owned. We would stencil all of our clothing using wax paper templates, make patches for our backpacks, embroider into our jeans, & we even went so far as to make our own reusable pads out of old flannel (maybe we'll talk more about that in a future post, but today is not that day). I'm still into the idea of repurposing the old into the new, but now my life is less... hardcore. 

 On Monday we looked into how to fuse plastic shopping bags. You can make pretty much anything out of this material. Today I decided to make a quick little coin purse.

To make this coin purse, you'll need:

  • Fused plastic (see my last tutorial for how to make this) 
  • Scissors
  • Thread
  • Masking tape
  • A zipper
  • A sewing machine or sewing needle (not pictured)

Cut a rectangular piece from your fused plastic. Determine the size you want your coin purse to be (perhaps a little larger than your driver's license so you can take this bad boy about town). Your rectangle should be as wide as you want the purse to be (with about 1/2 inch wiggle room), & twice as tall (again, with wiggle room).

Fold your rectangle in half. Then fold down the top & the bottom about 1/4 inch. This creates the "hemline."

Since we're working with plastic, we don't want to poke any unnecessary holes into the material. Instead of using pins to hold your zipper in place, use masking tape. Tape the zipper down over the "hemlines" with the teeth of the zipper meeting the folded edge of your "hemlines." 

[Clearly I am using a zipper that is far too long, but that's okay. The excess will get cut off in the next step.]

Sew your zipper in place with a straight stitch. I would recommend sewing this on your machine for durability, but it can be sewn by hand as well. Feel free to sew right over the masking tape & pull it off when you're done. 

[If your zipper is too long, zip it closed when you're finished sewing, & cut off the excess. Then sew a straight line across the cut end of your zipper a few times to create a bottom stop. Make sure to unzip it before moving on to the next step.]

Turn your purse inside out, & sew up the sides with a straight stitch. When you get to the ends of the zipper, fold the ends inward & sew them in place along the seam. 

Turn it right side out, & poke out the corners. Done!

It made me happy getting back to my "roots" today, but it's also nice to see how my crafting & creating style has changed over the years. For you long-time makers out there, how has your style changed? Do you follow the trends, or do you craft to the beat of your own drum?


Related // In the mood for reusing & repurposing? Make a mason jar change bank!


  1. Crafty feminist friends for the win!!! Love this project :)

    1. Oh the days of rebellion... some things never change. =)


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