Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Eco Friendly Grocery Bag - Free Tutorial

Those plastic grocery bags we get at the grocery store and other stores along with garbage bags, ziploc bags etc have many bad effects to the environment. They release toxins into the ground water from landfill sites, they take hundreds of years to break down, they get into the food chain through animals that ingest small plastic particles and kill thousands of marine animals each year. Some countries have banned their use.

One solution to this problem is to make our own reusable bags. Bring them with you when you go shopping to use instead of the plastic. They are easy and cheap to make and can be washed if needed.

I recommend using a heavier fabric such as denim or canvas. Here is a tutorial for making your own reusable grocery bag. I made this one large but you can make different sizes.

For this bag you will need the following:
1 rectangle of fabric - 18" X 36"
2 rectangles of fabric - 4" X 12" for handles.

With right sides together, fold the fabric in half. The fold will be the bottom of the bag.
Stitch the side seams. Either zig zag edges or serge if you have a serger.

Fold the ends of the handles in until they meet in the middle.
Do this for both pieces and press.

Fold the pieces in half again and press.

Stitch a seam along the folded edge about 1/8" from the fold.

Stitch another seam along the folded edge 1/8" from the fold.

Zig zag all four ends.
Fold bottom corners to form a triangle as shown.
Stitch a seam about 2 1/2" from the point across the triangle.
Trim excess fabric

Zig zag or serge the edges.

Turn inside out. Sewing the triangles formed the bottom of the bag.

Fold over 3/4" and then again 3/4" along the top edge of the bag and pin.

Place one end of the handles about 4 1/2" from the side seam.
Place the other end of the handle about 4 1/2" from the other side seam as shown.
Stitch a seam along the edge about 1/8" form the fold. Stitch over the handles a couple of times to secure.

Stitch another seam along the top edge of the bag about 1/8" from the edge. Stitch over the straps.
Here is what it will look like.
Your done! These are so fast and easy, you can make several in different sizes.

Fill them with your groceries instead of using the plastic bags.
By using these reusable bags instead of plastic, you can make a huge difference to the pollution problem. Statistics say that each person uses about 83 bags a year. For a family of four, that is 332 bags less every year that will be used.
If you would like this in pdf format, send me an email address and I will forward it to you. You can leave it in the comments section or email me:

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