Plastic grocery bags are being ditched nowadays in favor of reusable cloth bags. This is a good sign for Mother Earth, because plastic bags contribute a lot to the degradation of our environment. Since they are mostly non-recyclable, plastic bags litter the earth and it will take many years before they totally disintegrate. It is good therefore that most grocery outlets now discourage the use of plastic grocery bags. The cloth bags provided at the counters, however, are neither durable nor pretty so you might want to make your own cloth grocery bags by using old blue jeans. Denim cloth, from which blue jeans are made, is tough and durable as well as hip and stylish.
Here are the steps in making grocery bags from old blue jeans:
- Bring out these materials: sewing machine, old blue jeans (size 14), scissors, pins, blue thread, measuring tape and razor blade.
- Set a table for your work space. Spread the jeans on the surface. With the measuring tape, determine the length of the bag from the waist down to the legs to an extent of 17 inches. Mark the measurements.
- Cut the pants on the marked portions on both legs. Set aside the cut pant legs.
- Detach the front and back of the old blue jeans by cutting the inner pant leg seam starting from right to left.
- Fold the blue jeans in two such that the right leg is on top of the left leg. Slash off the extra part on each leg beginning from the sides down but leave out the crotch area.
- Turn the material inside out and spread it flat on the table. Cut away on the middle part now by running the scissors through the crotch area to completely separate the leg parts. The finished product is similar to a skirt.
- Prepare the sewing machine and make sure to install a 16(100) denim needle. Denim cloth is quite thick and tough hence the need for a heavy duty needle.
- Fold the bottom part of the material and pin together. Start sewing from the middle (under the zipper part) going to the end. Sew on the other side following the same procedure. Remove the pins. To make sure the bottom of the bag is really sturdy, sew it again for another round.
- Work on the straps with one of the cut pant legs. Cut the seams on both sides to yield two pieces of denim material. Cut off two inches from the bottom part of materials. You are now ready to sew each piece of the denim cloth.
- Determine the thickness of the strap. Two-inch straps are quite proportional to the bag. Join the cloth from both sides with pins on the inner part and stitch along. When done, push the cloth from one of the open ends to let out the right side. Do this step with the other strap material.
- Sew the straps on the bag. Make sure the ends of the straps are equally aligned. So that’s it. Your blue jean grocery bag is done.
Grocery bags made from old blue jeans will even look more attractive by putting some artistry into it. You may stitch on buttons or metal studs or even spray paint the bag randomly with fabric paint.