Jeans Pocket Turtle - another clothes upcycle.

After a break from sewing over the school holidays, it's time to get back to my clothes upcycling challenge.
Since the purpost for all these things I'm making is to sell them at my daughter's class stall at their school carnival this year, I want to come up with some ideas that the kids themselves can help make so that they are involved too and can take some ownership of the stall.

I saw these jeans pocket turtles on pinterest ages ago and have been wanting to try them ever since.

I found a pair of jeans that had been well used for other projects,
but still had the two back pockets and a little denim fabric too - just perfect for a turtle!

It was a simple matter of unpicking both pockets and cutting out a head and 4 flippers:

I stitched a couple of buttons on the head for the eyes, then stitched the head and 4 flippers right sides of the fabric together and leaving a gap for stuffing. I then turned them all out the right way and stuffed them lightly before pinning them in between the two pockets right sides facing outwards and stitching the double row of stitching (where I had previously unpicked the pocket from the jeans) to seal it all together. I had to leave a small gap at the side to stuff the main body, but then just machine stitched the opening closed.

I think he turned out really well. And definitely simple enough for the kids to try making themselves. I think I'll get my girls to try making some first!

I was also thinking of perhaps personalising the turtles a little on their 'shell'. the kids could add an applique letter, or some decorative stitching perhaps?  Something else to try.

What do you think?

To see what else I've made so far from old clothes for the school stall, click here.

And to keep up to date with my progress on this challenge and plenty of other upcycling and other cool ideas, I would love if you followed me on my Facebook page!



  1. He or she is just the cutest! Love the idea of personalizing the shell. School colors? The letters are a good idea. Maybe more buttons sewn on all over the shell? It's a great blank slate!

    1. Ooh - school colours - what a great idea Michelle! I've got plenty of scrap fabric from the old school dresses I could use....

  2. Beautiful job Jill, I wanted to pin it, I don't know why it doesn't work. I'll try to do one, this turtle is soooo cute!!! Thanks for sharing :)

    1. Thanks Marisa! Hope you managed to pin it!

  3. Oh he's adorable! I think he would look really cute if he was personalized with the child's letter or even the name maybe with fabric paint.

    1. Thank you! I think you're right, fabric paint would work really well!

  4. Super cute! Looks so good. Pinned and tweeted. I hope to see you on Monday at 7, we can’t wait to party with you! Lou Lou Girls


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