Olympic Bag Tags

This week I managed just a small sewing project for my girls, after finishing a big custom order for 78 plain calico tote bags!
I felt the need for a little colour and curves after all those plain straight lines!

Since the Olympics are on just now - and we're watching all sorts of sporting events and getting very inspired, I wanted to try an Olympic project!  
(My creativity is often inspired by what is going on around me!)

My girls have both decided they are going to compete in the Olympics in 8 years time, in swimming .
(and perhaps gymnastics and long jump too!! :) )
So I thought I'd make them new tags for their new swimming bags, to help them remember this goal and dream after the Olympics have finished this year!

I used some material from an old pair of jeans..
..so I'm counting this as my clothes upcycle this week!

I followed my own Personalised Rag Tag tutorial, with a few changes!

For the applique side, I decided to try the Olympic rings.
I found the 5 ring colours in my scraps and ironed on some fusible webbing, then cut out the rings:

Then I cut a slit in the green and yellow rings, and checking carefully against a picture in the newspaper, arranged them on the jeans fabric in the correct
 'over and under' layout!
(the rectangles of fabric I used for these tags were 
12 x 16cm (4.75 x 6.25"))

Then I ironed them on and changing coloured threads for each circle, used the applique setting on my machine to sew around each ring.

For the name side of the tag, I simply wrote the name on the fabric in pencil, 

then again using the applique setting on my machine, stitched over the letters.  I stitched over each letter twice to make them nice and solid!

Once the two sides were stitched together - with a piece of the jeans leg seam looped through a key chain ring slipped in the end,

 I snipped around the edges

 and rubbed the snipped part lots between my hands to make the ragged effect.

The girls both loved their tags and they also now make it easier for me to tell whose bag is whose!!

And I do love that rag effect around the edges!

Pretty snazzy!

So remember these tags, and watch out for them in 2020 on a couple of Australian swim team bags at the Olympics!!

For the downloadable PDF of this tutorial, click here.

Have you or your kids been inspired by the Olympics?
What has been your favourite event?
I've enjoyed watching lots of different events, but my favourites are the swimming and the athletics! 


  1. What a great upcycling project....we too have enjoyed all the coverage of the sports...will tuck this idea to do in the future. x

    1. Thanks Bron! The Olympics certainly has been inspiring!! :)

  2. Hey Jill, great idea for the tags and to inspire your girls to dream........you never know what they can achieve.
    Still gob smacked at the number of calico bags you've made........ You probably never want to see another scrap of
    calico !!

    Claire :}

    1. Thanks Claire!

      Yep, I've certainly had enough of calico for a while! After so much plain I just want to stitch colourful things for a while!!!

  3. Another fantastic idea, these tags looks great!


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