Soon after I posted my tutorial on how to make a water bottle holder from old jeans, I got lots of helpful feedback from readers and friends on how the holder could be improved. Based on that feedback, we’ve done a little rework on the design and came up with two new improvements you can make to the holder:
- Line it with a coordinating fabric
- Add a shoulder strap instead of a clip
Before reading this post, please refresh yourself on the steps in my original post, because I will refer to that a lot and expand on it when appropriate in order to incorporate these new ideas.
Gather the supplies
Follow the previous instructions in the “Cut pieces from the jeans” section to make yourself a 7.5″ x 10″ rectangle of denim and a pocket-shaped piece.
Sew the pocket in place using the instructions in the “Sew the top edge and attach the pocket” section. Do NOT sew down the top edge of the rectangle this time, though. Just attach the pocket. You can fray the edges of the pocket now or wait until later — your choice.
For the lining, you’ll need to cut a piece of coordinating fabric to 7.5″ x 10″ (Fig 1). There is just something perfect about the matching of denim and bandannas, so I used fabric printed with a red bandanna pattern, but you could easily use any other fabric or even actual bandannas cut to size.
If you want to add the optional shoulder strap, you will also need a 4′ length of ribbon. (You may want to make this a little shorter or longer to accommodate your height.) I chose a solid red grosgrain ribbon that matched my lining fabric.
Pin the ribbon in place
If you are adding a shoulder strap, pin the two ends of the ribbon to the rectangle so that they are about 1/4″ from either side of the pocket, and aligned with the top edge of the rectangle. Be sure that you don’t have any twists or loops in your ribbon, or else it will never sit right on your shoulder!
Attach the lining
Now place your lining fabric face down on the denim rectangle (which is face up), aligning the top edges. The ends of the ribbon will be sandwiched between the two layers of fabric. Sew across this top edge, attaching all three layers together, then unfold it and lay it flat.
Fold the entire piece lengthwise. Sew the long sides together as seen in the picture below, where I’ve marked the image with a yellow line to make it clear where you should sew. When you’re done, you’ll have a long tube.
Reinforce the top edge
Now fold the lining portion of your tube inside out, but leave the denim portion as it is. What you’ll end up with is an inside-out version of your lined water bottle holder.
We want to reinforce the top edge for several reasons. First, it will make the ribbon strap more secure. Second, it will keep the top edge of your denim/lining in place. Finally, the row of stitching will look pretty!
Take the inside-out holder to the sewing machine and sew a seam about 1/4″ to 1/2″ down from the top edge. This is going to be a tricky step, because you’re dealing with a small tube, but there should be just enough room to manipulate it in the sewing machine. Note that the denim layer will actually be on “top” as far as the needle is concerned, which will result in the “nice” side of the stitches being out the outside of the holder, and the “less nice” bobbin side being on the inside. This will make a nicer-looking finished product.
Sew the bottom
Follow the previous instructions in the second half of the “Form the pouch” section to sew across the bottom of your pouch and sew the corners into points, making a nice square bottom. When you do this, treat the lining and the denim as one layer.
Attach the clip
If you chose not to do the shoulder strap, follow the previous instructions in the “Attach the clip” section to attach a grommet and a clip to your holder, so that you can wear it on your belt loop, purse, or stroller.
The finished product
Turn the pouch right side out and the finished result is even more adorable than before. The lining adds a great touch to the holder and also makes it a bit sturdier, too. The optional shoulder strap is a great touch for those who prefer it to a clip. It hangs quite nicely around your shoulder and keeps your water within reach.