Condo Blues: 2 Rice Bags Turned into Shopping Tote Bags




Thursday, November 6, 2008

2 Rice Bags Turned into Shopping Tote Bags

Husband and I had some empty rice bags in our stash of reusable shopping tote bags. However, we rarely used them, or even worse, we got the passive aggressive stink eye from clerks at the grocery store because the rice bags were much smaller than the rest of our shopping tote bags.

I decided to make my small rice bags into larger shopping tote bags.

Shopping Tote Bag#1

I opened up the seams and removed the handles from this burlap rice bag with a seam ripper. Then I cut two 5 inch (3 inches wide + 1 inch seam allowances) rectangles out of a way too-faded-to-donate-to-charity 100% cotton curtain panel and sewed them to the sides of bag. I made and attached handles to the top of the bag for easy toting around town. I like how the green reclaimed curtain panel coordinates with the green lettering on the burlap rice bag.


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The zipper is not functional. I just left it in the side of the bag so everyone knows that yes, this was once a small Basmati rice bag.




Shopping Tote Bag#2

The next rice bag was two pieces of cloth sewed together with a zipper opening on top. Again, I opened up the seams and removed the handles and zipper with a seam ripper. Then I cut a one piece rectangle out of leftover heavy muslin cloth I had in my craft stash and used it to join the top and sides of the bag together. I made black handles out of more leftover cloth from my craft stash to coordinate with the black label and sewed them to the bag.

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Now I have two much larger shopping tote bags and wouldn't you know it I haven't encountered Passive Aggressive Checkout Clerk at the Mega Shopping Mart to impress her with my full compliment of shopping tote bags that are now roughly all the same size. (No wonder that I've taken to buying my grocery staples at Aldi's because the Grocery Baggers there don't care what size my shopping tote bags are because the Grocery Bagger is me.)

However, the Not Passive Aggressive But Very Hip Checkout Clerk at Trader Joe's was impressed with my shopping bag handiwork. What do you think?


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19 comments :

Chris said...

great idea - you're very resourceful.

Kirsten said...

I love the rice bag! You're so creative!

Monkey's Momma said...

Very crafty and creative!

Joy said...

I love the fact that your tote bags make recycling so chic! You're so right about the passive aggressive grocery clerks too. I can almost hear them sigh under their breath when I pull out my armful of cloth bags. Still, with bags like those, they can't help but be impressed! Thanks for joining us this week for Thrifty Green Thursday!

Sarcasm is just one more service I offer. said...

Those are really cool. I wish I could sew.lol :o)

Kat said...

These are great! Thanks for the tip! and LOL on the "stinkeye". I actually wrote a post about the cloth bags once and how I get the stinkeye when ever I use the droopy ones... cashiers are so picky!

Katie Gregg said...

These are really lovely. Maybe you should start a business!

suzannah said...

so cute! i'm impressed at your resourcefulness:)

Rebecca said...

Wow! I would love to transform some rice bags into bigger shopping bags. I have never bought my rice in big bags like that, but maybe I should start just so I can make a shopping bag for myself. Great idea!

Cathy said...

Those are so cute--thanks for the great ideas!

Candace said...

Awesome! This is exactly what I was looking for. I'm planning to turn some rice bags into reusables for my sis, and was going to cut the tops off, but I love how it looks with the zipper left on. Now I'm going to copy you instead of going with my original (somewhat foggy) idea.

Candace said...

PS, hmm, I think I'm going to sew some cloth behind the zip to make a pocket. :)

Keiki Gifts said...

Great project and very useful!!

Amanda on Maui said...

They look like those expensive shopping bags being touted about town. You could sell them for 100 dollars!

Amanda on Maui said...

Oh, and I can only get the paper rice bags when I buy in bulk.

Joyce said...

Your rice bag creations are fantastic!!

You've inspired me to try to convert some into shopping totes ...

Thanks!

Nike@ChooseToThrive said...

Fantastic! Love the graphics, love the repurposing, love the bags. Awesome.

Margot said...

This is wonderful. I have lots of burlap at home, so might make my own design. Thanks! :)

angelfitch said...

I always wondered what to do with those bags, and felt terrible getting rid of them! Great ideas!!
~Terry
www.mossandclover.blogspot.com

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