Tuesday, June 7, 2011

keeping it all together.....

 I have a HUGE list of to do's already compiled for the summer months. Amongst the list was something to hold a few plastic bags. I try to use my reusable bags most of the time....but there are those few rare occasions where I wind up coming home with a few plastic bags.  I had been stashing them in our pantry....but really wanted something pretty and functional. Most of the plastic bag holders I see to purchase are just too large for the amount of plastic bags that come into our household. Thus my conclusion was to make a smaller fabric bag holder that would fit our needs. To make a mini fabric plastic bag holder you will need the following:

2 pieces of fabric that measure 5x12 inches (I used a section of a vintage pillowcase for mine)
2 pieces of narrow elastic (1/4 inch or more narrow) 6  inches long and 8 inches long
1 piece of ribbon or trim 4 inches long (I used a piece of bias tape for mine)

 Start by laying your two pieces of fabric right sides together.....then sew them down each side seam (the longest length are the sides of your holder). 

 I also serged my edges for a finished look...as well as if I decide to wash the holder it will hold up longer. you can also zig zag your edges after stitching to ensure the edges won't fray.

 You will also need to zig zag or serge your top edges....leave them open....do not sew them together. This will make a cleaner edge when you turn the hem edge and press.

 Now press a seam allowance for your elastic. I made a hem edge of 1/2 inch to allow enough room for my elastic to run through smoothly.  You will need to do this on the top end and bottom end of your bag holder.

 Now stitch a seam allowance enough to fit your elastic through all the way around....leaving an opening of 1 inch or so to run your elastic casing through. You will need to do this on the top and bottom of your bag holder.

 Here is my opening for the elastic to run through. I almost always use 2 straight pins to mark this area so that I don't forget to leave an opening.

 I usually use a few safety pins to run my elastic through the casing. One attached to the end where I am running the elastic through....the other for pinning the end of the elastic to the holder so that the elastic stays in place and doesn't pull all the way the through the casing.

 Here is where I have pinned the other end of the elastic to my holder....that way the elastic will meet up with the other end once I have pulled it all the way through the casing.

 Allow a 1/2 inch or more to lay one end of the elastic over the other...to give you extra strength and give. I usually sew over this area several time as well as back stitching to ensure a proper hold.

 Now your elastic should be in place and you can finish your hem to enclose your elastic. You will follow this step for both the top end and bottom end of your bag holder.

 Now turn your bag holder right side out. You can see your bag holder taking shape. It's time for the final step.... you can add your piece of trim or ribbon as a loop for hanging. I used a small snipet of bias tape for mine....just making a little loop at the top for hanging. I stitched it down on both ends as well as back stitched for strength.

Now fill up your holder with plastic bags for recycling. This makes a nice petite holder which is just right for what I was needing. Stay tuned all summer long for tons of tutorials including.....making your own liquid laundry soap, dip dyed curtains, fabric storage bins, granola cereal, leftover fruit salad popsicles, grocery tote bag, 70's string light fixture, making a duvet cover, a crocheted doily bowl and much more! 


  1. Very cute Ellen!! I love the shabby pink fabric that you chose!

  2. so cute! i love it. i can't wait for more tutorials, sounds like a lot of crafty fun!!


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