Blog, Makes

Recycle sheets to make, dirty uniform, laundry bags for NHS and Care Workers

Having recently posted about using pillowcases to make bags for NHS dirty uniforms, I have been making more and more, and as with anything one does repetitively, I have found different ways to improve the design and speed of making.

Being in lockdown I reorganised my bed linen and decided to re-use the sheets with holes and to make laundry bags from them. When using sheets with holes and tears you will find that where the rips are, usually in the center of the sheet or duvet, the fabric is thinner. Use the thicker fabric at the edge of the sheet for bag making. When using an old sheet, rather than a pillowcase, you don’t have the time consuming step of unpicking the flap. I have used sports laces as cords as they are easy to come by Korbond sell them in supermarkets so they can be bought alongside your groceries. As laces have rigged ends they are simple to push through a casing, however a large safety pin will speed up the process.

You will need

A clean sheet or piece of fabric that can be washed at 60 degrees

A pair of sports shoe laces

Dress making Scissors

Tape measure

Dressmaker’s pins

Large Safety pin (optional)

Sewing machine or a needle and thread.

Old pillowcase


1 Measure the width of the pillowcase and add 3cms. This is the width to cut the fabric x 150cm (twice the length of a pillowcase)

2 Fold the fabric in half lengthwise, making a double piece measuring 75 cm x 48cm (or whatever the width measured). Measure 7cm from the top of the fold and mark through both thicknesses with a pin.

3 Make a horizontal cut 1.5cm on either side of the fabric where marked with pins.

4. Fold under and under again by 1.5cm the side of the flap, and sew with a running stitch. This neatens the edge of the casing.

5. Working on one side at a time, fold the top of the casing down by 1cm and then under again by 3cm, pin in place and then sew with a zig zag or running stitch. With right sides together, pin and sew from the casing to where the fold is at the bottom of the fabric. Do this on both sides, to create a bag.

6. Put the safety pin onto one end of the laces and push it through first the front and then the back casings. When you have both ends of the lace coming through on the same side of the bag, remove the safety pin and tie the two ends together.

Put the pin onto the end of one of the other lace and push it through the channel starting at the opening where there is a loop of cord and not a knot. When both ends are through the casing remove the pin and tie the laces together. Pull the laces tightly to create a bag.

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