These days, we seem to have so many bags for shopping! Storing them can be tricky, as you need them to hand but don’t want them taking up space and looking unsightly. Why not make your very own carrier bag storage bag. That way, you can make it the size you want, (you can make it so that it can hold the bigger shopping bags), and make it look nice. You can also hang it anywhere so that it isn’t getting in the way and is easy to find.
What you need
A piece of fabric to be the main fabric. You can split it and have two different pieces of fabric which you simply need to sew together before you start, but for the sake of these instructions, we will use one piece. A cotton material works well but home decor fabric will make it a little stronger. It needs to be 20” by 24” to make a standard sized storage bag.
A piece of elastic around 10” long and a 1/4” wide
A piece of ribbon to make the hook part (length and width of your choice)
A safety pin
The usual sewing equipment such as a sewing machine, thread colour of your choice, pins or wonder clips, craft Scissors to cut your material and an iron for pressing.
How to make
First of all, cut your main piece of material to the measures listed above. Before using your material, if it is new, wash it so that you don’t get any colour run if you happen to put a damp or wet bag in the holder. Then before you start making the bag, iron your material so that it looks nice and fresh, as it will be tricky to iron later on. Now, take the shorter lengths (20”) and fold both of them inwards onto the wrong side of the fabric ½”. Once you have done this to both edges, fold both of them inwards another, ½”. This is to create a sleeve for the elastic to go through. Sew along both seams leaving as much room as you can for a seam allowance and to allow the elastic to pass through.
Next, get your elastic and the safety pin and pin it to the elastic to allow you to thread it through later. Thread the rest of the elastic right through the sleeve. Don’t let the elastic poke out of the other end, but get as close to end of the sleeve as you can. Once the elastic is through, sew it down so that the elastic stays in place, leaving a small gap at the end for when you sew the two longer edges together.
Now pull the other end of the elastic that has the safety pin on back through the other end, bunching the material up as you get towards the other end. Again, don’t let the material poke out of this end either but get as close as possible. Remove the safety pin and sew down in place so the end of the elastic cannot move.
Have the material laid out and fold the material in half with the right sides facing each other so that the long edges meet each other. Pin these two edges together then sew them with your machine, allowing around ½” for a seam allowance.
The final part is to attach the loop for a hook. For this take the piece of ribbon cut for the hook part, and pin it to the wrong side on the seams at opposite ends at the top of the bag (the other end to where the elastic is). Then, sew it in place, going over the stitches twice so that the ribbon is very securely held (although storing carrier bags isn’t heavy, the pull from the elastic end as you remove the carrier bags will put some pressure on the ribbon). Remove the pins and turn so right sides are facing outwards.
Now you are done, you can add your carrier bags and hang your storage bag up!