Friday, July 10, 2015

Drapes to Grocery Tote

I bought these drapes at a church rummage sale. They were around $2 each. The dark-colored ones have a little bit of a plastic-y feel to them, but I wondered if I could make bags out of um.


They were a bit unforgiving in stretch, but still worked out great. I'm calling the bag a "grocery tote".  I made the straps long so that you can use it to carry some of your groceries on your shoulder, and then your hands would be free to carry the rest. 

Here's another drape-material bag.

And here are more that I've made. I've found that Foodland and Walmart don't charge for their plastic bags yet. Marukai and Don Quijote are charging 10 cents/bag. And if you go to the Disney Store, for sure bring your own bag, unless you're willing to spend more than $1 extra for a plastic bag.

You can find instructions here: Make It and Love It Farmer's Market Bag. For the straps, I cut two pieces of fabric 3 1/2 x 31 inches long.


Anonymous said...

Good job...curious about your sewing machine,what do you use? Because I've ruined many a machine sewing with thick fabrics like this. The first tell tale sign of trouble you will see is the under stitching and bobbin problems. Good luck with your sewing.

jalna said...

Anon, my sewing machine is a $150 Brother CS6000i which I ordered from Amazon this past February. I loved it from the start and was so impressed that I wrote my one and only Amazon review about it. Here it is:

I am beyond pleased with this sewing machine. Living in Hawaii and being without access to many products, I use Amazon for a lot of my purchases. I have never written a review before although I rely heavily on them and base my purchases on them. I am grateful for the honest reviews that others have given, and feel compelled now to let people know about this great find. I had not touched a sewing machine in 30 years, but having recently become semi-retired, find myself with extra time on my hands and decided to try sewing again. I am a novice seamstress, so I only needed a simple machine. I researched for months before deciding on this Brother CS6000i. I am totally impressed with everything about the machine. Set-up and instructions for use were clearly explained, and it worked like a charm, even going through thick portions of material easily. My first two projects were pencil cases with zippers. I am including photos. The best thing about the pencil cases is that I used material that I found at garage sales so it cost me less than $1 each to make! I am looking forward to many more projects using my new Brother CS6000i.

Lorna said...

Jalna: Here on Kauai, where we've had the plastic bag ban in effect for some time now, I have to laugh about the adjustment period Oahu folks are going through. Many a time I'd walk into the store and then have to go back out to my car to grab the recyclable bags! I've got about 10 of them in my car, and although we resented having to go through this, I am happy now that we are mandated to be more environmentally aware. But, your bags are about 1000 x more beautiful than the bags we use here!!

Kay said...

You are totally amazing, Jalna! I agree with Anonymous about the sewing machine. I already have a Bernina, but I swear it would have a difficult time poking through the materials that you use with your Brother. That is one amazing machine... but like I said, you are one amazing seamstress.

Dd said...

wow...didnt realize about the charges for bags...guess you gotta have them on hand for anywhere you shop, not just the supermarket.......and washable too !!!

mmiissee said...

Cool and very pretty. Nice patterns...especially the blue/white diamond looking.

Taryn M said...

Wow Jalna! Those bags look great. Keep it up!

Anonymous said...

j: you prove why I'm a lousy sewer (sew-er? the original looks like it's connected to the toilet), I am not patient like you. I LOVE LOVE the finished product but to spend all that time and all the details...I just won't have the patience for it. My mom told me once I don't have patient hands. I get inspired when I see your sewing projects then I see all the details and go ack. BTW since the new law except for one time, I keep leaving my reusable bags in the car. In fact I remind mom to bring 'em and she does hers, but me...I go dang, not again. I actually get scolded by the clerks, well THIS TIME I'll give you a reusable bag... as I hang my head in shame.-N

Susan said...

After that review, I would buy a sewing machine even though I don't know how to sew! lol. I know of one store on island that will take off 5c for every bag you bring in for your groceries. Problem is, I always forget to bring my bags. Your bags can be coded to carry all the different types of groceries since you have different designs : )

Mark Shelby said... is a little bit of sewing machine trivia that nobody knows.

When Wigwam Dept. Stores was sold, my Dad Marvin Shelby needed something to do. He became the Viking Sewing Machine Distributer for the entire Pacific region. Dad also sold Brother. We had a store in Kailua. And we also sold Viking, Brother and other brands in the "Dodies" fabric stores. Our good friends owned Dodies. Remember Dodies Fabric Stores from the 1970's?

Dad sold so many sewing machines, that he won a trip to Sweden to the Husqvarna Factory! I was just 17 years old. And that Summer my Dad took our family on a month long trip to Europe, ending up at the Husqvarna Factory for days of touring the large factories. I saw how they everything from lawn mowers to motorcycles and of course sewing machines. It was a trip of a lifetime!

Later when Dad started The Marsh Company in 1978, we actually sold Brother products and we had a sewing machine corner in the Dillingham Marsh Company store.

DNakamaru said...

hey nice bags! and a great review too!

Honolulu Aunty said...

You are like a bag factory! Nice combination, almost reminds me of the Japanese school bags we used to have for our pencils and workbooks.

Anonymous said...

It's still be careful.

K and S said...


Leslie's pics said...

!!!! These are awesome!

jalna said...

Me too, Lorna. I keep forgetting to take the bags in the store.

Bernina, Kay! I would love one, but my interests are usually so fleeting that it wouldn't be worth it for me.

Next time I see you Didi, we can trade plastic bottles for bags. LOL!

Thanks, Mmissee.

Thanks, Taryn.

N, I think sewing is kinda therapeutic. It teaches me to take my time and not get p.o.'d when things don't go right.

Susan, Foodland here will give you 5c off or 3 Hawaiian Airline miles. I think that's cool.

Thanks, Dean.

OMG Aunty, "Japanese school bags"! Such a neat memory. I forgot about those.

Anon, a couple of months after I bought the sewing machine, it went on Lightening Deal on Amazon. It was selling for $25 cheaper than what I paid. I seriously wondered if I should buy a second one, but didn't.

Thanks, Kat.

Thanks, Les.

jalna said...

Mark! So, so cool, your memories. I only vaguely remember Dodies. I think you should write a book.

Nippon Nin said...

Very nice! You're really creative!...neat stitch work. I own a computerized Janome and has 30 stitch patterns and came with lots of foots for zipper, button hole, far I used 'straight stitch', I'm not sure I ever use any of those cute stitches/ patterns. I realized now that I don't need this fancy sawing machine...oh, well. I'm sure Amazon appreciated your cute!

jalna said...

Akemi, my machine has fancy stitching patterns too, but I've only used a few of them.

Betty Townsend said...

Very nice!!