Despite your attempts to utilize canvas grocery bags, somehow you always end up with plastic bags, and you need a place to store 'em for proper recycling. You could check out these directions for a hard-surface unit; or you can give your burgeoning sewing skills a workout with the instructions below. (Plus, the soft surfaces and light weight make it ideal for a substitute pillow, or hitting your friends upon their making ridiculous comments.)
Remnant or scraps of fabric measuring:
18” x 21” (alternatively, consider an old dishtowel, placemat, or pant leg.)
3” x 6” (for handle)
Needle and Thread
Sewing machine (optional)
Two pieces of elastic, approx. 6” in length (I used some recycled elastic from some old camping gear)
Matches or lighter
Two safety pins: one large and one small
Total Cost: Maybe $1.50. Total Time: 30 minutes
1. Sew the handle. Iron the smaller piece of fabric- 3”x6”- flat, and then fold in half lengthwise. Iron the crease flat, and then open again. Fold each side lengthwise towards the center crease, and iron flat, to make a handle 3/4” x 6”: (3/2 = 1 1/2 / 2 = 3/4).
2. Sew the body. Fold the large - 18” x 21” – piece in half lengthwise. Lay the handle inside the fabric with the scraggly edges in line with the edges of the body. Sew a seam 1/4” inch from the open edges to make a tube, attaching the handle to the inside.
3. Attach the Elastic. Fold the top edge down 1”, iron, and sew a seam, leaving both ends open. Cut the elastic to length, and use a lit match to seal the edges from fraying.
Attach the safety pins to both ends, and thread the smaller safety pin through the hem. Allow 1/2” of overlap between the two sides, and hand sew the two ends to make a loop.
4. Repeat step 3 for the opposite end.
5. Hang it. Flip the tube inside out, and hang in a convenient place. Fill the bag from the top, and pull from the bottom when needed.