Friday, June 14, 2013
Bags of Bags, and an Opportunity for Craft
Yesterday Hattie asked about my reusable bags routine. I have been bringing reusable bags to the store ever since I left home 22 years ago, so I have had a lot of practice! Here is my insulated blue bag, the one that I schlepp my Pyrex containers round in for filling at the butcher. He starts to sweat when he sees it come through the door. The green bags are general grocery shopping. Every time I empty them, I put them next to the front door, right next to my handbag, then the next time I leave the house I take them back out to the car. But that's not all...
Inside my handbag is my new breadbag, ready for my daily bread any time I walk past a bakery. There are also two fold-up bags which I use for everything, every day, whenever I go into a store, or to the library, or for the children to fill up with pine cones at the park..
These bags are from Envirosax, an Australian family company from Queensland. They are made from polyester, and the company will recycle them for you if you post them back at the end of their life. Mine have lasted two years now, and do note that they match all my clothes! If you are in Australia it is likely that you have seen these at the counter in houseware or giftshops. I bought mine locally.
I do think though, that if you are remotely handy at sewing, they would be easy to whip up. I think the genius is in the folding technique. Here, I'll show you:
Here is the bag unfolded. You can fit A LOT in these bags.
Detail of the wrap around snap lock, sewn into the bottom seam.
First, fold down the handles.
Then fold the bag in half across the handles (this is a valley-fold in origami, in case you were wondering)..
Then flip the whole thing over and fold into thirds.
Roll up the resulting tube towards the snap fastening at the bottom..
And snap shut.
There. All you crafty souls will be able to whip up a dozen in no time. Think how nice they would be in silk. Or buy some, and support a nice Australian company (they are made in China, but under fair trade terms).
The most important thing to remember though, is that as soon as you get them home, you have to EMPTY them, and put them BACK IN YOUR HANDBAG... and then you will never need to accept another plastic bag again.*
*Of course, this may be difficult to remember, so here is an alternative. Don't buy anything ;-)