Tutorial: How to make children’s clothes out of take-out bags

I’ve learned that it’s a great thing that men and women don’t always think alike.  A few years ago I had an event I really wanted to attend and luckily for me it was right by my husband’s office so he offered to take our little boys during his lunch break so I could go.

When I returned to the car afterwards, I found my almost-4-yr-old wearing a new outfit: 

Turns out he got so excited about having lunch with Dad he didn’t want to tell him when he needed to get to the bathroom and had a little overflow issue. At first my husband wasn’t sure what to do because I had neglected to bring along any back-up pants.

So he came up with this wardrobe option to get them through the rest of lunch, give me time to finish my thing, and get us back home again. I don’t think I would have come-up with it in a thousand years. But it totally worked. Good job, Dad. I’m so glad you’re my partner in this crazy adventure called parenthood.

Thanks to the response from when I first shared this story, we have created an official tutorial for making upcycled children’s clothing from plastic take-out bags. Think of the myriad of possibilities when this look would come in handy.  Perhaps this tutorial will be useful enough to hit the big time.  We await a call from Martha Stewart any day now. Let’s give him a warm welcome:


Hi Amy’s blog friends. I’m flattered and grateful for all your positive comments about my solution for our boy’s accident at lunch one day. I was surprised by Amy and many of you writing that you wouldn’t have thought of it. So I will take Amy up on her invitation to write a tutorial how to do so. And thanks so much for all the nice comments and validations you give Amy!


1.       Get little boy into bathroom and clean him up while keeping 1-year-old from touching the urinal. After failing at the second part, wash his hands really good and never tell his mom that happened (until writing blog tutorial years later).


2.       Contemplate putting 3-yr-old’s wet pants back on, but decline because that would be uncomfortable for him. Contemplate letting him go pants-free, but decline because of what his mom will say.


3.       Never consider for one second what the other moms in the fast-food place might be thinking about your parenting abilities.


4.       Look around bathroom for anything that could help. Attempt weaving a paper-towel lava lava or kilt. Fail.


5.       Poke head out of bathroom and look around for other materials. Tell 3-yr-old to stay put while you carry 1-yr-old and grab take-out bag.

6.       When 3-yr-old refuses to let you tie bag around his waist, poke holes in the bottom and rebrand it as cool “overalls” like workmen wear. Breathe sigh of relief when he accepts the idea.


7.        Let boys continue to run around circular booth in fast-food joint until mom’s event ends.


8.       Embrace any perceived judgment or derision from any of the other moms there. Tell yourself they are just wishing their husbands would spend more quality time with their sons.


9.       Eagerly anticipate emailing your guy friends the photo of your son wearing a plastic bag as overalls.


10.   When 3-yr-old demands to go visit your office, decline because the bag is a little bit see-through and his mom would be mortified.


11.   Hold firm when he throws a tantrum and insists, “Put some black tape over my private part like on America’s Funniest Home Videos!”, even though that it is an impressive argument.


12.   Present him with pride when his mom arrives to pick him up.



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  • Reply
    June 30, 2011 at 5:02 pm

    Thank you so much for the good laugh 🙂 <br />x

  • Reply
    Brian G.
    June 30, 2011 at 5:03 pm

    Good thinking, Dad. I recently fashioned a &quot;dress&quot; out of a garbage bag when our 3 year old threw up all over herself on the airplane. Desperate times call for creative solutions. 🙂

  • Reply
    June 30, 2011 at 5:04 pm

    That was me not my husband Brian. Dumb log in thing. 🙂

  • Reply
    June 30, 2011 at 5:10 pm

    Hey, desperate times call for desperate measures! My nephew once had to pee in a Mountain Dew can and my sister&#39;s words were, &quot;Jake, just stick it in there.&quot; Yes, I am totally serious. <br /><br />www.skippitydodahquilts.blogspot.com

  • Reply
    June 30, 2011 at 5:11 pm

    oh hilarious! I need ed that today, thanks!

  • Reply
    June 30, 2011 at 5:15 pm

    Just too funny!!! Thanks.

  • Reply
    BillieBee (billiemick)
    June 30, 2011 at 5:21 pm

    And they are waterproof.

  • Reply
    June 30, 2011 at 5:21 pm

    Genius, just genius. What a hoot!

  • Reply
    June 30, 2011 at 5:21 pm


  • Reply
    June 30, 2011 at 5:33 pm

    Haha, this is great.

  • Reply
    Quiet Quilter
    June 30, 2011 at 5:36 pm

    Clever! And so true! Amazing!

  • Reply
    Merry Made Quilts
    June 30, 2011 at 5:38 pm

    This is sooo going to be my go-to tutorial for the next accident!! I&#39;ve got to add that it&#39;s extra fabulous that you didn&#39;t sneak out in shame but finished up at the restaurant first!

  • Reply
    June 30, 2011 at 5:40 pm

    Personally, I like the kid&#39;s suggestion to use the black tape. Creativity abounds in your family!<br />–Becky C.

  • Reply
    Denise :)
    June 30, 2011 at 5:49 pm

    Baahahaha!!! That was GREAT! I&#39;m forwarding a link to my daughter-in-law and my son. Just in case he&#39;s presented with a similar challenge some day soon. 🙂

  • Reply
    The Cottage Mama
    June 30, 2011 at 6:02 pm

    Hahaha!! Oh my gosh, I had to click over on this because I thought – &quot;wow, Amy&#39;s doing kiddo clothes, how awesome!!&quot; This seriously made me laugh – too funny!!<br /><br />Lindsay

  • Reply
    June 30, 2011 at 6:23 pm

    haha,, maybe Dad could start a weekly guest spot.ya have to do what ya have to do:)

  • Reply
    June 30, 2011 at 6:30 pm

    ha! i love it. am forwarding this to burke so we can laugh together. he&#39;ll be glad to know he&#39;s not the only one still watching america&#39;s funniest home videos.

  • Reply
    June 30, 2011 at 6:50 pm

    This is great! Very open, honest, and positive. Loved it!

  • Reply
    Esther L.
    June 30, 2011 at 7:32 pm

    I haven&#39;t laughed that hard in a while! Also, I&#39;m sharing this with my hubby since we have a little boy we&#39;re currently potty training.

  • Reply
    June 30, 2011 at 7:43 pm

    You totally rock!

  • Reply
    June 30, 2011 at 7:54 pm

    I love it!

  • Reply
    June 30, 2011 at 7:55 pm

    This made my day. I never laughed so hard and your hubby is not only creative in clothing design, but gifted in his writing. Such a good read. I plan on sharing this with my son who has four boys. Clever.<br />Sandy

  • Reply
    June 30, 2011 at 7:59 pm

    Hehe 🙂 Scott enjoyed this as much as I did! Lovin&#39; the black tape request.

  • Reply
    June 30, 2011 at 8:15 pm

    Awesome. Just awesome. 🙂

  • Reply
    June 30, 2011 at 8:59 pm

    Hahaha — you&#39;re too funny!

  • Reply
    June 30, 2011 at 9:34 pm


  • Reply
    Katie B.
    June 30, 2011 at 9:46 pm

    Hilarious, and seriously helpful too! #11 is my favorite.

  • Reply
    June 30, 2011 at 9:50 pm

    Oh goodness, note to self, don&#39;t drink a beer &amp; blog surf. Hilarious, thank you!

  • Reply
    Quilts And Pieces
    June 30, 2011 at 10:03 pm

    Oh my gosh – this is hysterical!

  • Reply
    Laurie, the girls and Scott
    June 30, 2011 at 10:24 pm

    This this be the first of many more Michael columns? Por favor?

  • Reply
    June 30, 2011 at 10:27 pm


  • Reply
    June 30, 2011 at 11:43 pm

    Truly funny.

  • Reply
    July 1, 2011 at 12:46 am

    Absolutely brilliant! Have sent link to my husband – just in case….

  • Reply
    July 1, 2011 at 1:29 am

    This was HILARIOUS!!! What a great read. Well written. I could totally picture this whole scenario.

  • Reply
    Quilter in the Gap
    July 1, 2011 at 6:04 am

    I so needed a good belly laugh this morning…thanks for sharing!

  • Reply
    July 1, 2011 at 6:30 am

    Hysterical! An absolute classic! I had to share this link on FB — a tutorial every parent should read. LOL!

  • Reply
    July 1, 2011 at 7:52 am

    I am crying I am laughing so hard (and getting funny looks too!)Have a great weekend.

  • Reply
    July 1, 2011 at 8:00 am

    Absoluetly fabulous! I haven&#39;t laughed out loud at a post in a while. Thanks for the fun. Dad-parenting is the best, great job!

  • Reply
    July 1, 2011 at 8:04 am

    Oh my gosh this was so funny! And this something I could picture my husband doing exactly. Thank you for sharing for hubs point of view!

  • Reply
    July 1, 2011 at 8:30 am

    Okay, I love this. <br />You guys are hysterical.<br />And we need to finish up some things, lady. When do you have time?

  • Reply
    July 1, 2011 at 8:51 am

    Thanks for that! Great way to start the weekend off! lol.

  • Reply
    Live a Colorful Life
    July 1, 2011 at 9:06 am

    Thanks for the good laugh. and awesome tutorial. I have a 3-year-old grandson. This could come in handy at some point…

  • Reply
    Crafty Girls Workshop
    July 1, 2011 at 10:23 am

    Hilarious, thanks for sharing!

  • Reply
    July 1, 2011 at 12:35 pm

    This is HILARIOUS!! I cannot wait to show my Dad and my brother-in-law!

  • Reply
    July 1, 2011 at 1:54 pm

    So funny! Thank you for the laughs. I immediately sent the link on to my daughter who is the proud mom of 3 preschoolers.

  • Reply
    July 1, 2011 at 3:07 pm

    I have tears I am laughing so hard! I think steps 8 and 11 are my favorite. This is by far the most helpful post I&#39;ve ever read. Nice work.

  • Reply
    Brooke @ My Beautiful Brooke
    July 1, 2011 at 4:41 pm

    BEST thing today!!! I love this!! I am laughing so hard!! You should definitely have your husband do more guest spots on your blog. Way too funny!!

  • Reply
    Layne Bushell
    July 1, 2011 at 5:13 pm

    I&#39;ve read through all the comments so far and I&#39;m still laughing and I still have tears in my eyes. That was so funny hearing it from him. I can see the chain of events. Thanks for sharing him with us Amy!

  • Reply
    July 1, 2011 at 5:44 pm

    Can picture it all — so funny — they are right when they say kids change your life.

  • Reply
    July 1, 2011 at 6:52 pm

    Oh, I will have to keep this in mind!!! ;0)<br />Thanks so much for the laugh.

  • Reply
    Everyday Quilter
    July 1, 2011 at 10:54 pm

    Best guest blogger ever! you better keep that creative man!

  • Reply
    July 3, 2011 at 9:42 am

    My husband was two thumbs up for the creative and gumption for the DAD, and loved the humor. Gave us a morning laugh. He doesn&#39;t usually so any interest in my blog reading :&gt;)

  • Reply
    July 4, 2011 at 6:41 pm

    Too funny!!!!. What a great post. Thank you

  • Reply
    July 7, 2011 at 2:07 pm

    Seriously laughing out loud….too funny…thanks for sharing!

  • Reply
    July 12, 2011 at 7:58 am

    HILARIOUS Amy!!!!

  • Reply
    January 4, 2012 at 8:16 am

    This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  • Reply
    April 23, 2012 at 7:49 am

    Haha, this is HILARIOUS!!! :D<br /><br />But you forgot point 13: Never show picture of former 3-yr-old wearing a plastic bag &quot;overall&quot; on his 21st birthday party.<br /><br />;)

  • Reply
    June 22, 2012 at 10:01 pm

    OMG! I&#39;ve read this several times and each time it makes me laugh out loud and share with others! Kudos to ur husband! What a creative family. Hilarious!

  • Reply
    Jamie Gupton
    July 27, 2012 at 11:37 pm

    This had me in stitches! Thank you for the &quot;guest&quot; post. 🙂 I think your husband is also very creative.

  • Reply
    June D
    June 14, 2013 at 10:37 pm

    Happy Father&#39;s Day!<br /><br />:)<br />

  • Reply
    Sarah Elliott
    June 16, 2013 at 8:40 am

    There are no words…except for HAPPY FATHER&#39;S DAY to a very quick thinking cool Dad!

  • Reply
    June 17, 2013 at 10:29 pm

    Reading this, I am laughing so hard I am crying.

  • Reply
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  • Reply
    September 24, 2018 at 7:51 am

    félicitations au SUPER papa que vous êtes! …. 😉

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