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What Can You Do With Old Jeans Pockets?

The best upcycled and repurposed jeans pockets ideas.

Denim pockets are one of my favorite parts of a pair of old jeans to upcycle. Along with the waistband, and the denim seams they often give a humble pair of jeans character.

Especially, the larger back jeans pockets which are often decorated with some simple machine embroidery or have a makers tag attached.

On an average pair of jeans, there are normally five denim pockets. Two large back pockets and two front pockets. The fifth pocket is actually a pocket within a pocket. It is the tiny pocket inside the front right pocket.

This pocket was originally designed for pocket watches but it is now referred to as the coin pocket.

Recycled jeans projects ready to be upcycled

How To Upcycle A Denim Pocket

The best way to remove pockets from a pair of jeans is by using a pair of scissors. However, check the project you are going to use them before cutting out the pockets.

Some of the jeans pockets DIYs below use just the pocket others also use some of the denim fabric surrounding the pocket. That is why it’s good to check before getting too scissor happy.

The back pockets on a pair of jeans have a distinct outer seam. It is very easy to cut them out right next to the seam. The great thing about these cut out jeans pockets as they already have a seam and will not fray.

Cutting out a back pocket from jeans

With the front pockets, there is not a distinct seam so the denim around the pockets will fray. Also, with the front pockets, you have to make sure you don’t accidentally cut the inside cotton pocket.

Top tip: If you brush fabric glue on raw denim edges, this will stop them from fraying.

Jeans pockets for upcycling

The Best Upcycled Denim Pocket Ideas

Below is a list of some of the best ideas for upcycling and repurposing denim pockets. I’ve only included ideas that come with a tutorial.

I did come across some other cool ideas, such as coffee cup cozies and denim angels on Pinterest. However, I could not find a tutorial for either of these crafts so I haven’t included them.

So before chucking out your worn out old jeans see if you can rescue the pockets and repurpose them into something useful.

These denim pocket ideas were featured under P, for my comprehensive list of A to Z of denim crafts.

What to do with your old jeans pockets? A wonderful collection of DIY tutorials for the upcycle and repurposing of your old denim pockets.

There are of course many other ways to upcycle fabrics and denim than just using the pockets. But there is something about a denim pocket that is fun. I often recognize pockets from my favourite jeans in the upcycled projects I have made. Denim is great for upholstery too, even the pockets.

Not only does upcycling and repurposing your old jeans save them from adding to landfills, but the act of upcycling also has many other benefits and can be therapeutic.

Upcycled denim pocket ideas

Mary Jane Partchey

Saturday 29th of January 2022

I made gift bags out of the back pockets. They are big enough for small items.

Claire Armstrong

Sunday 30th of January 2022

Thank you, yes pockets make great little gift bags.

Jo Wall

Saturday 17th of July 2021

Actually, I made a cover for my two KitchenAid mixers using the top portion of a large size denim jean leg then sewing a pocket on the side front. I store recipe cards in the pocket just for decoration.

Claire Armstrong

Sunday 18th of July 2021

Wow! I'd love to see a photo of that it sounds fabulous and handy too.


Wednesday 23rd of June 2021

I use old pockets and use them as patches on my jeans. It's great when you only need a few things and don't want to carry a purse. I also made a wrist bag from a front pocket added a zipper on top and sewed in a wrist strap.

Claire Armstrong

Wednesday 23rd of June 2021

Those both sounds like great ideas. Pockets do make handy little carriers I use one for my phone and sunglasses.


Sunday 24th of January 2021

I used blocks of jean legs to make a car blanket for my son's car. Used plaid flannel for the other side.


Sunday 23rd of May 2021

@Heidi, Good Idea. I made a wide crazy quilt style cover for the foot of my bed to use when I’m using that space laying out things. Top from jeans backed by print fabric.

Claire Armstrong

Sunday 24th of January 2021

That sounds lovely, especially with the cozy flannel side.


Friday 11th of December 2020

Inspiring ideas, thank you

Claire Armstrong

Friday 11th of December 2020

Thank you, glad you enjoyed them.