Sunday, April 22, 2018

Earth Day ~ April 22nd ~ Reusable Shopping Bags

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Today is Earth Day and the focus this year is to help end plastic pollution. 

Plastic is threatening our planet's survival, from poisoning and injuring marine life to disrupting human hormones, from littering our beaches and landscapes to clogging our streams and landfills. 

A few weeks ago my Dad was shopping at Lowe's in Chicago, Illinois, and they wanted to charge him 7¢ for a shopping bag and he was flabbergasted. 

The new "checkout bag" tax applies to ALL Chicago retailers, and applies to both paper and plastic bags. Shoppers who do not have their own bags will be charged the 7¢ at the checkout. 

What is a frugal shopper to do? 

Make your own shopping bags! 

In doing so, we can help end the plastic pollution caused by plastic shopping bags and can even save some money when retails like Target pay us to bring our own shopping bags. 

Here is a shopping bag I made on Wednesday using fabric I bought at a yard sale last weekend. 

Here is a link to the pattern for this bag. 

Mean Queen over at Life After Money makes her own shopping bags also and even gives them away free to other shoppers. 

There are multiple videos on YouTube on how to make your own shopping bags as well. 

Here is some fabric that my daughter picked up recently at a yard sale that I'm going to use to make my next shopping bag. 

This is a nice sturdy canvas fabric, which is perfect for a reusable shopping bag. 

Let's do what we can to save our planet and use reusable shopping bags when we shop. 

~ Living within our Means ~


  1. Gorgeous bag! Can't wait to see the retro "quilt" one!

  2. I always keep cloth shopping bags in the car, so I don't forget to take them when shopping. Most of my bags are conference give aways. :)

    1. Those are the bet, Nil. I love getting a free shopping bag.

  3. It seems plastic has become the evil of the earth. It really saddens me that so many people are so careless with their trash and litter so much.

    We are not yet charged for bags, but many stores DO offer a .05 discount off sale for each re-usable bag you use!
    Bags are so easy to make - no excuse not to have them at hand.
    Good post. Have a great day!

    1. Thank you, Cheryl. My daughter is taking an environmental science course this semester and her professor is really into protecting the environment. She has told her class horrible stories about plastic bags and their misuse. It's really made my daughter change several things she does each day. I hope you have a great day too.

  4. Great! I prefer to use my own bags. The one store I don't is the Walmart market. It seems to confuse them. I do bring the bags home and use them in the house. I was just given a bunch of upholstery samples. I'm going to see if I can piece together a bag.

    1. That's great, Shara. I think the upholstery samples would make a great bag!

  5. I buy shopping bags for a quarter at yard sales. Or, I get them at conferences. I have a load of fabric out to cut for bags for Christmas Child shoeboxes. It is so simple to make a bag without a pattern! I will not need a pattern at all. It's great the teacher makes an impression on her.

    1. I think it's great too, Linda. I love it when teachers are able to do that. Shopping bags are a great yard sale find and sometimes even freebie finds. That's a great idea about the Christmas Child shoeboxes. I'm going to share that idea as it's a great one!

  6. I have plenty of totes that were given to me. Yard sale shoppers would always ask if I had plastic bags for what they bought. Also, heavy totes
    are cheap at yard sales. If I buy a tote, it will be cheap. Love your tote fabric and style, Belinda.

  7. I have lots of bags that were all freebies, except a couple I did purchase at Petsmart.

    I don't live in Salem MA, but they have banned plastic bags and most have switched to paper, including Petsmart. But they charge $.10 for a paper bag. Very small amount I know, but it wasn't my idea for Salem to switch to paper so why are you now charging me for a bag. Needless to say, I bring in my own bag.

    I am not a sewing person, but I love what you manage to make on very little. Good for you.

    1. Thank you, Mary Lou. They've not banned bags here in TN. Not yet anyway. We do like using the reusable bags though.


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