This year in the UK we started paying for plastic bags in an effort to reduce the number of them that are made and end up in landfills. So more and more of us are carrying reusuable shopping bags.
But we still fill little plastic bags with loose vegetables, fruit and other foods. Then we put them into our cotton shopping bags.
To me this does not make sense, so a few months ago I made myself reusable drawstring bags from a piece of stretch cotton knitted fabric I had in my embarrassingly huge scrap pile and try now to buy my fruit and vegetables, nuts, herbs and other foods loose to limit the amount of unnecessary plastic that comes into our little home.
But it was after someone told me my little white bags looked like they were made from dishcloths that I started thinking of an even easier way to make these shopping essentials. These white, knitted, stretchy cloths can be bought in any UK supermarkets, hardware store and are even available in a cardboard roll without a plastic bag of their own in my tiny local market.
So here is how to make some reusable drawstring loose bags to keep in your reusable shopping bags…
1. Cut off one of the sewn ends of the cloth.
2. Turn your cloth inside out and turn over the cut edge by about 1.5cm, pinning as you go. Make sure not the stretch the opening too much.
3. By hand or on a machine sew along the pinned edge about 1cm from the top. Turn your bag the right way out.
4. Measure a piece of string, twine or embroidery thread to fit the opening and cut, allowing about 10cm excess.
5. Tie the end of your string onto a small safety pin.
6. Carefully thread the pin through one the holes in the knitted fabric and into the top channel.
7. With your fingers, move the pin and string through the channel.
8. Once you have moved the pin all the way round the opening of your bag bring it carefully out of the same hole you initially put it through.
9. Open the bag to the original width of the dishcloth and tie the ends of the string together securely. Cut away the excess leaving 1cm or so beyond the knot.
10. Put your bags in your shopping bag ready for your next shopping trip xx