Maker Lily is back with another way to be sustainable and create less waste around the house. This week she's sharing a sewing tutorial which uses up old fabric. Read more to see how she does it.
DIY Tutorial: Making Reusable Cloths
Time: Max 4 Hours
- 45 minutes to pin and cut
- 3 hours (depending on how many you make)
- Optional 15 minutes for decorative sewing
Level of Difficulty: 6/10
I had an old duvet cover that I didn’t use anymore, and decided to use a Saturday in lockdown to turn it into something useful!
From about two-thirds of a duvet cover I made:
- a laundry bag (using the buttons at the seam)
- 3 Handkerchiefs
- 10 reusable wipes
- 10 kitchen cloths in two different sizes
And I still had some fabric leftover which I’m going to use as painting rags!
The kitchen cloths I will use to wipe down surfaces as you would with kitchen roll, and the smaller size I will be using as reusable wipes. To do this I will make a solution of disinfectant, water, and essential oils (recipes vary depending on whether you are using them for cleaning surfaces or skin) and spray it on as needed. You can also put them pre-soaked in a water-tight container to use them on the go!
This would work really great with an old patterned duvet, as then the staining from wiping down surfaces won’t show as much. I don’t mind it staining, and I also wanted the reusable wipes to be white anyway. You can also skip the sewing and just cut the fabric up into rags, but I wanted something that wouldn’t fray and acted similar to kitchen roll.
What You'll Need:
- Old fabric (I used an old duvet cover)
- Sewing Machine
- Fabric Scissors
- Size template (This is needed for step 4 - click to enlarge)
Take your clean fabric and lay it flat on a table. Choose your size template - I used a baking sheet as a template for my large kitchen cloths! Alternatively use the folding method in step 3.
Using your size template, pin and cut your fabric to the desired size. I cut the width first, dividing the duvet into strips with different widths so I could organise the sizing more easily. I pinned the two sides of the duvet together so it was ready to sew once it was cut, but if you have a pattern remember to pin the right side to the right side (turn the duvet inside out if you’re pinning as you cut).
Step 3 -
Alternatively, fold the end of the strip upon itself to create a square. I did this with the smaller-sized cloths.
Step 4 -
Sew the edge of each square, leaving a couple of inches at the end to flip it inside out. Sew to close (see sewing guide at the top for help) .
Step 5 -
Clean up any flyaway threads. Repeat for all cloth sizes until you have the desired amount.
Optional Step -
Sew a border in a different colour thread for decoration - I only did this with three of the smaller size cloths to make them more like handkerchiefs.
Use and then wash with items such as tea towels.