Upcycle a Broken Umbrella Into a Cute, Reusable Grocery Bag

4 Materials
20 Minutes

We’ve all had an umbrella break and thought to ourselves, this is the end of the road. I’m here to show you, that simply isn’t true! I love a good upcycle and using an old, broken umbrella to create something new and functional seems almost too good to be true. Follow this tutorial and learn how to DIY a reusable grocery bag from a broken umbrella! This upcycle not only salvages an old umbrella, but it saves us from using plastic bags at the store. This step-by-step guide will show you all the tips and tricks to create the ultimate, reusable grocery bag!

Tools and Materials:

  • Broken umbrella
  • Scissors
  • Sewing Machine
  • Buttons

How to make reusable grocery bags

I started by unpicking the umbrella material from the actual umbrella. I would only be working with the umbrella material so I needed to make sure I removed it all before I could start my upcycle. The best thing about this material is that it is durable and waterproof. I’ve seen quite a few reusable bags made from it so I was excited to get started on my own! 

Cut the material
Cut the material

I folded the umbrella material in half and noticed that the material is divided into triangles which helps give it its umbrella shape. I cut the far left and far right triangles off of the rest of the material. These cut off triangles will later become the straps for this cute, new reusable bag.

DIY reusable grocery bag
Fold the material

In this step, I folded the bottom and top left and right corners. I then turned the bag inside out and I was ready to sew! 

Upcycled reusable grocery bag
Sew the side seams

I closed up the open sides of my new bag by sewing side seams. It’s so exciting seeing this upcycle come together! 

Draw a line
Make the bottom of the bag

To get started on creating the perfect bottom for my bag, I drew a straight line across the triangle point of the material. 

Reusable grocery bag pattern

I went back to my handy sewing machine and sewed across that line. 

Cut the straps
Make the straps

I circled back to the triangles I had cut off for the straps. I cut them in half, making four smaller triangles. I placed the triangles in pairs, right sides facing together, and headed back to the sewing machine. 

Sew the straps together

I sewed just under the point, across the top of the straps, creating one long strap. I then edge stitched all the edges down to give the strap a perfect finish. 

Add buttons
Sew on buttons

I hand sewed these small buttons onto the side seams. Adding these buttons would allow the bag to open up and be folded which is a feature I just adore! 

Use masking tape
Attach the straps

I used masking tape to symmetrically attach the straps onto the bag. The masking tape helped to hold them securely in position.

Sew on the straps

I then went ahead and sewed all the edges of the handles onto the bag.

Reusable grocery bag

This anti-waste, reusable bag is everything! What other umbrella upcycles have you heard of? Let me know in the comments below! 

Suggested materials:

  • Broken umbrella
  • Sewing machine
  • Scissors
See all materials

Join the conversation

4 of 8 comments
  • Lars
    on Mar 31, 2021

    Where the heck do you put the buttons?? Can't see them on the bag in your photos.

    The pic of the buttons looks a lot more like snaps to me.

    • Lars
      on Apr 1, 2021

      Thank you! Until you pointed it out to me, I never noticed that this whole thing is on Youtube! So typical of my ADHD ability to zoom through everything and miss the important stuff. I appreciate the help very much!

  • Brilliant! Do you know how many broken umbrellas I have tossed over the last 40 or 50 years? More than I care to count. Now I know what to do with them when one breaks. Odd though, I still have the umbrella that I received as a birthday gift when I was in second grade. Guess the quality went downhill from there.

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