Revamping an Old Bag with HTV

…a “not-really-a-tutorial-but-there-is-a-free-file-show-and-tell” post

Revamp an old bag with HTV

On my last visit to the thrift shop (it’s the best place to find inexpensive glass for etching!), instead of using a regular plastic shopping bag, they packed my purchases in a zippered insulated bag. OooOOOooo, reusable. I like that. And with our frequent trips to the lake, we could always use a bag like that. The only thing was it already had a design on it, and an ugly one, at that.

Usually I create something new, but today I want to share with you how I used my Silhouette to recycle something old. Although I have links and free files for you, it’s not really a tutorial…more like a show and tell.

Here’s what the bag looked like when I brought it home:

Revamp an old bag with HTV

Yes, lovely, worn design, isn’t it? But after a little heat transfer vinyl, it now looks like this:

Revamp an old bag with HTV

That’s much better.

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What you need…

tothelakeFree Download
Silhouette .studio3 To the Lake file HERE
Silhouette Legacy v2 To the Lake file HERE
SVG To the Lake file HERE
Personal Use Only

What to do…

The first part of the process is the same as for most HTV projects. Here’s the quickie rundown (If you need it, you’ll find detailed information about working with HTV HERE.):
—Resize the design to fit your bag
—Mirror the design so it applies the right way once cut (to mirror, select the design, right-click, then choose ‘Flip Horizontally’).
—Cut the design from heat transfer vinyl.
—Weed out the non-design parts.

What to do with the old HTV? You can either remove it or cover it. I’ll be doing a future tutorial on HTV remover (it’s on order), but I was anxious to convert this bag, so applied the new HTV over top of the old design this time. I used a piece of black HTV large enough to cover the original design, then layered the new blue design on top in a knockout.

Now when it comes to applying the HTV, if your bag is like mine and doesn’t say what it’s made of, proceed with caution. Mine seemed to be two layers, the inner reflective metallic layer, which should take heat no problem, and the black outside layer, which I was almost sure was polyester, polypropylene, or poly-something that wouldn’t take heat well.

Place the bag over the ironing board (or heat press, if that’s what you’re using) so you’re applying on one side of the bag at time, cover with parchment paper or Teflon sheet, and then ignore the HTV application instructions. Instead, turn down the heat by about half and shorten the pressing time to a few seconds per press. Press as many times as you need to get the HTV to adhere properly—you’ll know it’s on properly if the HTV takes on the shape of the fabric fibers underneath. Just press for a few seconds each time.

There. All ready for the next road trip.

Revamp an old bag with HTV

So how many old bags do you have tucked away that can be recycled with HTV?



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6 thoughts on “Revamping an Old Bag with HTV

  1. I’m curious too read post twice thought I missed something, I’m assuming you put black vinyl over the original design?

  2. Hahahaha… sorry, guys. I just realized it’s not visible in the pictures. For this project, I used a piece of black HTV large enough to cover the original design, then layered the new blue design on top in a knockout. I’ve just edited the post to include that. I have HTV remover on order, so you’ll see a tutorial with it in the new year.

  3. Thanks! I thought perhaps you were a Houdini and able to make the old design disappear. Well, you did, actually….. lol

    1. Poof! It’s gone. LOL… For this one, I just covered up the old design. I’m looking forward to the arrival of the HTV remover, though, so I can try removing the old design next time. I know it’s supposed to work fabulously on newly applied HTV, but I’m going to run it through its paces on old stuff…a bag like this, for example.

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