For some time at our house we have been somewhat involved in recycling stuff. A while back I actually got into the habit of bringing my reusable bags shopping. But these totes that I have collected over the years (mostly at quilt and sewing shows) are almost all made of light tan canvas. Although they were great for fat quarters, embroidery CDs and thread they don’t hold much when it comes to groceries and household supplies (come to think of it they were never big enough for the loads of fabric I bought at those shows either). And these bags are now, after just a couple of months, stained, frayed and ugly. I thought I heard the clerk actually groan the other day and I still needed 3 plastic bags in addition to what I brought. That was it – if I am “Going Green” I am going to do so in style.
Here is my first effort at a Designer Green Bag.
I’ve gotten lots of comments and everyone in my family wants them. And they don’t want just one. No, they want four or five or six – what have I gotten myself into?
And to be sure I am not alone. A friend made some great green bags and has found that everyone we know wants them. So, she has decided to use up her rather extensive stash of fabrics and scraps, collected over the years, for a good cause. She makes the bags and sells them at a great price giving all the money to the Peanut Allergy Research Foundation. It is amazing how many children suffer from this life-threatening allergy. These little ones have to learn at a very, very young age to say “no” to ANY snack offered, eat somewhere away from their friends, and be wary of every new place to stay out of danger. And the diligent mothers are reading every label – just “made in the same factory in which nuts are processed” means it can’t be consumed at their house. Communication is currently the only key to keeping these children safe.
She has saved the day and has made bags for me already. Since I do not have enough time to make all the bags requested of me I have ordered more bags from my friend in support of her cause.
You can use any large tote pattern you really like. To download instructions for mine click here.
To make a designer bag all you need is:
24” quilter’s ruler
A great embroidery design (I used a rooster from the Amazing Designs Rooster Jumbo Collection)
Or Alphabet Xpress or your Favorite Ann’s Alphabet
Here is a link to the free pattern my friend, Marilyn, uses.
If you like it better just add the designer embroidery pocket from my instructions.
I think I'll monogram the next ones for my girls using Alphabet Xpress.
Making and using Designer Green bags helps the environment, recycles fabric we may not otherwise use and gets the attention of others. Making them for a charitable purpose helps us help others as well. Hmm, who’d have thought!
Note 1: If you make one (but I bet ya can’t make just one) share it with us by posting it to our gallery. We would love to see what you do.
Note 2: To learn more about peanut allergy research visit this site: http://www.foodallergy.org/research.html
PS: Here are a few more "Green" projects you might want to try:
Reusable Snack bags
Reusable Mop pads
Recyled Water Bottle Totes