I know that I’m not the only one. You unwrap a piece of gum, take a receipt, or finish with your grocery list, and if there’s no recycle bin around, you stick that piece of paper into your purse to recycle at home. Before you know it, you’re wading through scraps of paper to find your keys.
Every time I clean out my purse, I tell myself that I will be better about recycling those little papers as soon as I get home, but let’s be honest here: I am never going to remember to do that on a daily basis. Rather than continue to junk up my bag with papers, I decided to whip up a simple little recycle pouch purse organizer. If there are going to be lots of tiny pieces of paper in my bag, at least they will be contained! Here’s how you can make your own.
Recycle Pouch Purse Organizer
- Light colored piece of scrap fabric – 7.5″ X 23″
- My recycle symbol template(pdf), or you can do this part freehand, if you prefer
- Permanent marker
- 7″ piece of reclaimed ribbon
- Sewing machine, pins, thread
1. Press your fabric, then make a 1/2″ hem on both unfinished short sides of your fabric. Pin, like in the photo below, and stitch to finish the hems.
2. Fold the bottom of the pouch up, right side in, so that the fabric that’s doubled over measures 7″. Pin long the unfinished edge, then slide your piece of ribbon so it’s sandwiched between the doubled over pieces of fabric, sitting 2″ from the bottom fold of the pouch. You can see the ends of the ribbon sticking out of the folded fabric in the photo below.
3. Sew up the unfinished sides of the pouch, from the folded bottom up to the spot where the doubled-over fabric ends, using a 1/2″ inseam. Don’t forget to backstitch a few times on both ends, so it’s nice and strong.
4. Flip the bag inside out, positioning the ribbon so that it’s on the front side of the pouch. When you flip the ouch, you’ll notice that the unfinished edges of the top flap naturally want to curl in. That’s perfect! Use your iron to press these down, pin, and use your zig zag stitch to finish these seams. You want the edge of the zig zag to fall just past the unfinished edge, like this:
5. Now it’s time to add your design! Pin the template to the wrong side of your flap, and take care to orient the design properly. Remember: that flap is going to fold over, so the design should be oriented so it’s right side up when the pouch is folded shut. It might be hard to see the design through your fabric. If it is, just place the pouch over the top of a lamp, like this:
6. Trace your design carefully with your permanent marker, then remove from the lamp and color it in the rest of the way.
Voila! Take that, tiny scraps of paper! You don’t stand a chance against my new recycle pouch purse organizer!
Hi there! My name is Becky Striepe (pronounced “stree-pee,” like “sleepy”), and I am a freelance writer and vegan crafter living in Atlanta, Georgia. My life’s mission is to make green crafting and vegan food accessible to everyone! Check out my new book: 40 Days of Green Smoothies!