Using Repurposed Denim To make Backyard Game Bags

by Tammy Taylor~

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As y’all already know, RancherMan & I wanted a personalized Ranch-Themed Cornhole game for our annual family reunion (ie: RanchFest) that we host each year.  We bought the materials and RancherMan got busy building the customized ranch-themed cornhole game.  Although we could have simply *purchased the bags to go with the game, I wanted to make the cornhole bags myself using my stash of denim scraps from RancherMan’s ripped jeans.  Luckily it was super easy even for a novice seamstress like myself.  (Oh c’mon, I don’t think I can’t call myself a seamstress, even a NOVICE one!)   But if I can do it, ANYONE can!  Come see how easy it is to whip up these cornhole bags yourself.

We needed 8 bags to go with our custom Cornhole Game. Look how easy it is to make your own Cornhole Game Bags - they turned out GREAT! #TaylorMadeHomestead

Finding Sturdy Material

Of course the denim material in RancherMan’s jeans is a nice sturdy material for my cornhole bags and I love everything denim.  I’d already scavenged the back pockets of these ripped jeans to make a fresh supply of no-sew denim coasters but the jean leg sections would be perfect for making my cornhole bags!  You’d better believe where denim is involved I can be a repurposing queen – I love denim!

I wanted a 5 1/2″ x 5 1/2″ finished size so I smoothed out the fabric of RancherMan’s old jeans and measured eight 6 ” squares out of the legs and marked them with pencil. Then I used straight pins to hold the squares together as I cut them out.  I decided to use two different colors of denim to make it easier to see the different team’s play so I cut out 4 squares of dark denim and 4 squares of faded denim.   When I was cutting the fabric squares I left the one seam of the jean leg intact so I’d only need to sew 3 seams to complete the bag.  Oh yeah, I’m lazy errr I mean EFFICIENT like that!

We needed 8 bags to go with our custom Cornhole Game. Look how easy it is to make your own Cornhole Game Bags - they turned out GREAT! #TaylorMadeHomestead

Sewing The Cornhole Bag Squares

When all my squares had been cut out I turned the denim wrong-side out and sewed an approximately 1/4″ seam around 3 1/2 sides, leaving a small 2-3″ final section unsewed.  I used a butter knife to turn the bags right-side out again through that unsewed portion and now that small unsewn section will be used to fill the bags with corn.

We needed 8 bags to go with our custom Cornhole Game. Look how easy it is to make your own Cornhole Game Bags - they turned out GREAT! #TaylorMadeHomestead

Custom Decorating Your Cornhole Bags

Now my bags are ready to fill, but first I wanted to decorate them.  I laid each bag out flat and used a permanent sharpie marker to boldly draw our brand on the 4 faded denim bags, and the letters “TMR” (for Taylor-Made Ranch) on the 4 darker denim bags.  Oh yeah, I like it!

We needed 8 bags to go with our custom Cornhole Game. Look how easy it is to make your own Cornhole Game Bags - they turned out GREAT! #TaylorMadeHomestead

Filling The Cornhole Bags

Now all that’s left to do is fill the bags with corn & finish sewing ’em shut!  I suppose you could use dried beans or maybe rice, but traditionally these bags are filled with deer corn.  We had already purchased a bag of deer corn, so using a digital scale we measured out 15 ounces (about a pound) of corn for each bag.  Then using a funnel we poured the measured corn into each bag and used a strong clip to hold each one closed until I could sew tightly closed the final section of each bag.

We needed 8 bags to go with our custom Cornhole Game. Look how easy it is to make your own Cornhole Game Bags - they turned out GREAT! #TaylorMadeHomestead

Even though we purchased a 50-lb bag of corn, we only used 8 lbs for our cornhole bags.  I’m guessing that all that leftover corn will go into RancherMan’s game feeder this fall.  Hummm…  d’ya think he planned that??  LOL

Finishing Up The Cornhole Bags

Now that the bags have all been filled, all that’s left to do to finish them up is to sew shut the hole I’d left for filling them.  I’ll hand-stitch the last 3″ section of each bag shut but I wanted to double-stitch it to make sure it would hold strong. So I folded the seam in to match the rest of the bag that had already been sewn and hand-stitched a simple but tight running stitch first along the length of the opening to sew the two sides together and then went back over it with tight looping stitches to make sure the bags were tightly sewn and could withstand the rigors of tossing.   Oh yeah baby, you’d better believe my family can get cut-throat when we’re competing with each other!

 

We needed 8 bags to go with our custom Cornhole Game. Look how easy it is to make your own Cornhole Game Bags - they turned out GREAT! #TaylorMadeHomestead

So there you have it! Making our own custom cornhole bags was an easy project that cost us nothing more than a little corn!  Although we used these bags for our very Taylor-Made Ranch customized cornhole game, you could use them for any game that requires tossing a beanbag – I’d think they would be great to have on hand for kids parties for them to use with their own games!  We love the way our cornhole game turned out!  If you haven’t already seen the tutorial on Making Your Own Cornhole Game be sure to check it out!

UPDATE:  The faded denim material was not near as sturdy as RancherMan’s Wrangler jean denim and we had some cornhole bag failures with those faded ones.  I’ll replace them with RancherMan’s jean material, but turn the fabric inside out to achieve the different color…  I also took a reader’s advice and although I still double-stitched the edges of each bag, the first stitch was straight and the second was zigzag right over the straight stitch.  Hopefully that solves the problem!

Cornhole Bag Remake #TaylorMadeHomestead

~TMH~

C’mon by & sit a spell!  Come hang out at our ~TMH~ Facebook Page – it’s like sitting in a front porch rocker with a glass of cold iced tea – lots of good folks sharing!  You can also follow along on Pinterest, Twitter or GooglePlus. If you’d like to receive an email each time a new blog post goes live it’s EASY to subscribe to our BLOG.

 

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31 thoughts on “Using Repurposed Denim To make Backyard Game Bags

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  7. Michelle

    This is such a great idea. Hmm…guess you have to know how to sew :0 Great use for old jeans!! Found you on #OverTheMoon!

    Reply
    1. Taylor-Made Homestead Post author

      Well, kinda Michelle. These bags were sewn using only straight lines so even with my oh-so-novice sewing skills it was an easy task for me. Yea! ~TMH~

      Reply
  8. Katie

    Hi there – cornhole is my FAVORITE summertime game so I decided to use your post as a feature for next week’s Happiness Is Homemade link party – congrats!

    Reply
  9. Katrin

    This would be lovely for my kindergarten kids! Jeans are perfect because they’d last a long time! A great repurpose Taylor! I’m happy you shared it again at our Sweet Inspiration Party!

    Reply
  10. Grandmas House DIY

    I’ve been planning on making our own corn hole game for the yard so I’m definitely saving this! – Pinned! Thank you for sharing with at the To Grandma’s House we go Wednesday link party! Hope to see you there again tomorrow!

    Reply
    1. Taylor-Made Homestead Post author

      OMGosh shelley, even with my oh-so-limited sewing skills these bags were easy to make. I love that the demin kept the farm theme for our game too. ~TMH~

      Reply
  11. Katy SkipTheBag

    How fun! Hubby just built us a cornhole board, but we bought our bags. Thanks for sharing on the Waste Less Wednesday Blog Hop.

    Reply
    1. Taylor-Made Homestead Post author

      I saw there were inexpensive bags for sale, Katy. But I had all that denim and I thought it would make a cute part of the ranch theme to use denim. For us, it was perfect! ~TMH~

      Reply
  12. Renee

    Great idea! My mother made us all quilts from our old jeans. Such a nice thick material for so many uses. Plus denim looks perfect for a game of corn corn hole!

    Reply
    1. Taylor-Made Homestead Post author

      The only jean quilt I’ve ever experienced was one my grandmother had. It was so heavy, and I loved it! ~TMH~

      Reply
  13. Ashleigh

    We don’t have a yard at the moment but I’m bookmarking this for when we do! Great post! Thanks for sharing on Peace, Love, Linkup! Hope to see you tomorrow at 6 for the next round of sharing fun!

    Reply
    1. Taylor-Made Homestead Post author

      The heavy denim worked perfectly for these bags Ashleigh, and I love that I was able to repurpose that material. ~TMH~

      Reply
  14. Marie

    I love that you made these out of denim! I bet that makes them super sturdy! Thanks for sharing your DIY with us at Merry Monday this week!

    Reply
    1. Taylor-Made Homestead Post author

      The dark denim was bullet-proof, but the faded denim was much weaker. I’ve been remaking the faded denim bags with the dark denim of RancherMan’s Wrangler jeans, but I’m turning them inside out to achieve the lighter color I’m after. So far it’s worked perfectly! ~TMH~

      Reply
  15. Michelle

    These are great! Looks like I better get the hubby to make the corn hole boards! . I’ll take care of the cute bags! Michelle

    Reply
    1. Taylor-Made Homestead Post author

      …and the bags can be used for many other fun backyard games Michelle. I love that they make good use out of repurposed denim, a material we always have plenty of around the ranch. ~TMH~

      Reply
  16. Mary-the boondocks blog

    I am huge on repurposing and this is definitely a great one. I love taking old clothes and repurposing them for something else. This is the perfect use for old jeans. They are sturdy and will be able to stand up to the game. Taylor thank you for linking up with us and giving us lots of Sweet Inspiration. Pinning and tweeting.

    Reply
    1. Taylor-Made Homestead Post author

      Awesome – thanks for the pin! I love everything denim and although RancherMan thought we should just buy the bags for simplicity’s sake, I really wanted to use the denim. I think they turned out great! The faded denim fabric was too weak to hold up to the vigors of the game so I remade those faded denim bags using RancherMan’s heavier denim Wrangler jeans. I just turned the fabric inside out to make the lighter color – worked great! ~TMH~

      Reply
  17. ColleenB.~Texas

    Besides doing the straight stitch, I would suggest doing a small zig-zag stitch right along the straight stitch for that little extra stability. All and all you done a great job in your sewing and great use of using old jeans. A person can always pick up old pair of jeans at GoodWill Stores, etc.; just watch for the 50 % off days on clothing. If you didn’t want to use jean material than my second choice would be to use Duck Cloth.

    Reply
    1. Taylor-Made Homestead Post author

      The zigzag stitch is a great tip Colleen. I find myself having to remake the faded denim bags, the material just wasn’t heavy enough to withstand the rigors of the game. I’ll be cutting/sewing the replacement bags today and I’ll make the lighter-colored underside of the denim the part that shows so there’ll still be two different colored bags. I’ll be sure to use your zigzag tip to reinforce them. Stay cool today, girl – it’s gonna be a hot one again! ~TMH~

      Reply
        1. Taylor-Made Homestead Post author

          Yessum, since I had to remake the faded denim bags I have a couple of extra in reserve to use if we have another blowout. I made the replacement bags yesterday using your tip of one straight stitch followed by a zigzag stitch right over it. I made the different color by using RancherMan’s heavy denim jeans but sewing the bags inside out – so one set is darker than the other set. Worked great! ~TMH~

          Reply

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