Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Reusable Shopping Bags from a Shower Curtain

If you're a fan of Sophia's Sundries on Facebook, you may remember that I asked for ideas of what to do with a polyester shower curtain someone had given me.

My kids thought it was cute, but it doesn't match any of my bathrooms (which are all floral - surprise!). They also like to fill up bags to take with them anytime we go anywhere - out shopping, to church, to visit, etc. So when I ran across the idea of making reusable shopping bags from a shower curtain, I thought it was a great idea. I'd make them and give each of my kids one as a tote bag.

Some parts of the shower curtain were more colorful and the design was fuller than others. So when I cut them out, I paired a "busy" cut with a "less busy" cut:

You're probably wondering how hard this slippery fabric was to work with. Well, once I got going, it wasn't hard at all. I just pinned it well and took my time.

Also, if you're familiar with this kind of fabric, you know that it frays like crazy. That fraying is like angel hair. To prevent lots of annoying fraying on the inside without having to line them, I simply edgestitched the seams with a zig zag. I had a specific overedge foot for my sewing machine that makes it look a bit like it's serged. However, after I sewed the original two bags for my kids, that foot mysteriously disappeared. I have since cleaned that room top to bottom, and it is nowhere to be found. I'm afraid it ended up in the garbage with scraps. Good thing for me, it's not hard to do without one of those overedge feet.

I suppose all shower curtains are a pretty standard size. I was able to get a total of 8 bags out of this shower curtain. I made them at 15" square, and that makes the finished bags approximately 13x12x4". It's a nice size for grocery shopping, since it limits the amount of heavy items the clerk can try to shove into your bag. Some reusable bags are so big you wouldn't be able to carry them if they were stuffed full, yet a lot of the baggers are teen-aged boys who can carry about anything ... and sometimes think the rest of us can, too. :)

For the handles, I used a bright yellow, 7/8"-wide grosgrain ribbon.

If you're inspired to make some, I'd love to see what you come up with. If you're not that handy with sewing (or just not interested in taking the time), I've listed a set in my Etsy shop. I have a total of 6 bags available (3 sets).

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Shore Girl said...

What you don't think of to re-use and recycle! Cute bags!

that TOPS lady said...

These would be good to take to the lake!