Shopping Bag Challenge!

There are lots of little things we can do to be better stewards of the world around us.  Afterall, that’s why I have this blog.  But the one thing that has really been on my heart a lot (It was even the first thing I blogged about on this site!) is using cloth shopping bags.  I have really really really wanted to switch to cloth for some time now, but buying good quality bags is too much for our budget.  Sure, you can buy the $1 bags at Target, but I would be a little uncomfortable shopping at WalMart with a Target bag.  (I think that’s part of their plan!) 🙂  I thought about making my own bags, which would be much cheaper, but until now, I have not had any time.

So, here comes the challenge part….

If you do not currently have cloth shopping bags, and you have even basic sewing skills, would you join me in sewing some bags?  They don’t have to be fancy, but if you want to make really cute bags, that’s fine, too.  Here’s how the challenge is going to work.   If you want join me in sewing (and using!) cloth shopping bags, please leave a comment, telling me why you want to make the bags.  And then in a couple of weeks, I will do an update post, and you can send me a link to your pictures (or send me your pictures) of the finished product so everyone can see the great work!  We’re going to see how many cloth bags we can make. 

To help you in making the bags, here are a couple of tips and some links to easy patterns:

1.  While you can use a stretchy fabric, it’s best to use a sturdy woven fabric so it can hold more weight inside.

2.  Make sure you reinforce the seams really well.  You don’t want the bag to come apart in the parking lot and drop your eggs everywhere!

Here are the links:

Durable denim tote comparable to a paper sack–This one looks really roomie!

This is a British movement called “Morsbags” and it has a free pattern that uses old pillowcases.–These are adorable.  Make sure you look at the pictures of finished bags for inspiration.  There are some adorable ones on there!  And I love the idea of using old fabric you already have at the house.

Pattern to make the cloth version of a plastic shopping bag–I don’t know too much about this one, but it looks pretty simple to make if you want something that works like a plastic bag.

And of course, if you are skilled enough, there are tons of sites that sell bags, and you can get inspiration for your own bag from looking through the websites.

Have fun sewing and knowing you’re being a good steward of what God has given us!  (Because that’s what it’s really all about.)  And don’t forget to leave me a comment and let others know about the challenge, too!

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One Response to “Shopping Bag Challenge!”

  1. LindaMc Says:

    Hi Beth!

    I made the “durable denim tote” in about an hour (from cutting out the fabric to finished product.) I found the instructions pretty accurate; only the handle instructions were difficult to understand (I do better with pictures!) I knew my machine wouldn’t handle the multiple thicknesses of attaching the doubled-over handle to the bag so I put a floral edging around the top and used topstitching to secure the handle.

    I’d submit a picture but my digital camera is kaput. Anyway, it’s very cute and I’ve used it lots of times already…just not for shopping! Of course, the fabrics and thread all came from garage sales. I have more of the heavy denim left so I’m looking forward to making more bags when my schedule permits.

    I’ve been missing seeing you and the ladies. I hope to be finished with the house project by Saturday. Thanks for being a good woman! Linda Mc

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