How to reduce textile waste by repurposing unsold/gently-used t-shirts, dresses and skirts to make grocery bags

Type of organisation or company
Other (Albania)
Language for original content
Project elaborated in partnership
Type of funding

With the aim of eliminating textile waste by repurposing unsold/gently-used clothes (such as skirts, dresses, shirts and t-shirts), there is a new and sustainable grocery bag design. This new circular grocery bag not only saves up to 30% of fabric compared to traditional designs, it can also save fuel, manpower and energy which would have been used to manufacture a standard bag.

The design is very simple. A grocery bag can be made quickly out of unsold/gently-used clothes, leading to reduced textile waste.

Four easy steps to turn old clothes into a grocery bag:

  1. Cut straight across under the sleeves.
  2. Leave the centre open to provide access to the bag.
  3. Cut 16 cm down from the top on both sides for the handles.
  4. Fold both sides around 3 cm onto themselves and hem 5 cm from each side on the top.
  5. Sew the bottom and the grocery bag is ready!

For more information about this circular grocery bag design, see detailed comparative analyses in the description on this link.

This approach not only reduces textile waste that ends up in landfills, it also reduces the amount of single-use plastic bags used.

Main activity field
Main results
  • Saves valuable natural resources by extending the life of used clothes
  • Reduces the amount of textile waste
  • Offers an easy and simple way to turn used clothes into a new product.