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DIY Belt Bag

Every time someone compliments me on a sundress, I have the same response: "It has pockets!" I think at this point all my dresses have pockets because I either bought them that way, or I sewed them in after the fact.

My winter wardrobe on the other hand is pretty much all leggings, all the time. Leggings are great. They are comfortable and can be dressed up or dressed down. But they have a very big downside - NO POCKETS! What is a girl to do?

I love the idea of belt bags, but they never look right on me, and I don't want to unzip it every time I want to grab my phone. I thought to myself: I wish I could just add the pocket from my jeans to what I'm wearing now. So that's what I did.

Materials to make a DIY belt bag:

  • old pair of jeans

  • belt or strap

  • scissors

  • seam remover

  • sewing supplies

The first step is to cut out either the top left or top right corner of your jeans so you are getting both the front and back pockets. Next, remove the seam to match the width of the belt you are going to add.

the top right corner of a pair of jeans that has been cut off

Next, turn the cut fabric inside out and sew together the cut seams (except for part left open for the belt - that comes later).

denim being sewn in a sewing machine

Now it's time to add the belt. This would work with any type of belt you like, but I decided to use a guitar strap because I thought it would look cute, and because it's adjustable and has closures it would work just as well.

a grey guitar strap

Next, take the denim and position it through the top portion, and pin it to the inside, but only on the back of the jeans. This allows access to the inside of the bag. The other option is to cut the belt in half and sew each end to the opening, but if it's something that can't be cut (or that you don't want to) you can sew it all the way through on the inside back.

a guitar strap being pinned to a denim bag

Once pinned, turn it inside out again and sew the belt to the inside back of the bag. I also added one of the adorable personalized labels I received as a gift (shoutout to the best mother-in-law a girl could ask for). You can see the belt below the label.

a clothing label that says Handmade by Erin that is sewn into the inside of a denim belt bag

The last (and trickiest) step is to turn the bag right side out and close up the seams where the belt goes through on either side. Make sure you are using a heavy duty needle as it's going through a lot of fabric - the front of the bag, the belt, and the back of the bag.

a guitar strap belt being sewn into a denim bag

I love the way this turned out. It's neutral enough to go with anything and has so much storage between the back pocket, inside of the bag, and front pocket.

a woman wearing a DIY denim belt bag

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