Sunday, August 25, 2013

A vintage clothespin bag

The new bag in use
 I made a clothespin bag quite a few years ago when my old [boughten] one wore out.  I used a vintage-style pattern I found online and vintage fabric from my grandmother.
The previous clothespin bag I made probably a half dozen years ago.  It had faded to a dull gray and the fabric became so weak it was constantly ripping and was full of holes.  Every time I used it, clothespins fell out.
This summer it became obvious that the fabric had disintegrated from spending so much time in the sun and from its heavy load of clothespins and a couple of clothesline spacers.  I had to do something, but when I went to look for the pattern I'd used previously I couldn't find it. 

My search did yield another, very simple pattern which I had printed out years ago.  This simple clothespin bag is made from a kitchen towel and a wooden clothes hanger.  I knew I had wooden hangers on hand -- my great-aunt had given me a bunch of them a long time ago.  I wasn't sure I had any dishtowels in my fabric stash, though.  Then I remembered some kitchen linens that had come from my grandmother originally.  They were thick textured cotton with a colorful design of tulips, windmills and so on.  I had used some of these as dresser or bureau scarves in the past as they were really too thick to work as a dishtowel and too dense to be a hand towel.  And they were stained in places.  It seemed to me that putting one of these to work as a clothespin bag would give it a useful new life.  Best of all, it was just enough wider than my wooden hanger to work perfectly with the pattern.
The finished bag.  You can see what a pretty print this towel is.
I had thought I couldn't share the link to this pattern, as the page it links to no longer exists.  I think I've had this pattern since 2006 or so, so it's not surprising.  But I just now (January 2014) tried searching in a slightly different manner, and found the link!  Here it is: Vintage Style Clothespin Bag.  This project was very, very  easy and took perhaps 20 minutes total.
I'm not completely thrilled with this bag -- it is a lot bigger and less compact than the old one --  but it is hard-working, sturdy and cheerful-looking.  Best of all, it cost nothing (same cost as the previous one!) and recycled a couple of older items.  It is truly a vintage project!


  1. I love that cheerful fabric Mrs must make hanging laundry outdoors a little more enjoyable!!

  2. Hi Mrs.T...very nice ... I love the vintage charm! I have a homemade clothespin bag given to me by a sweet friend of mine that I use all of the time. Sunday Blessings!

  3. Thanks for the sweet compliments, Arlene and Teri! I love hanging clothes outdoors when the weather is conducive to that. (Which it really hasn't been today, being overcast, but there have been a number of nice warm, sunny breezy day this summer which have been perfect.)

  4. Do you still offer instructions on how to make this clothespin bag? I am in need of one and love all things vintage. I was thinking of drafting my own until I found yours.
    Thanks and kind regards.

    tmforjc (at) gmail (dot) com

  5. Tina Marie,

    When I posted this, I wasn't able to find the pattern online again to share the link. I just tried searching in a different way, and here it is:
    Vintage Style Clothespin Bag

    I'm going to edit my post to add this link, too. Thanks for asking, and have fun sewing!


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