Friday, December 3, 2010

Green Bag Challenge!

A couple of weeks back my lovely friend Kristin from Sew Mama Sew spoke at our local Modern Quilt Guild Meeting about the Green Bag Challenge. Inspired by Teresa, The Green Bag Lady, she proposed that we all wrap our Christmas gifts this year in fabric bags and fabric wrapping. Of course I love this idea because if someone gives me a gift all wrapped in fabric that is like getting two gifts!! But there are some really great reasons to wrap in fabric. Here are some very eye opening things to think about from Kristin:

Fact 1: US consumers generate 4 million tons of wrapping paper and shopping bag waste during the holiday season alone.
Fact 2: The US alone goes through 100 billion single-use plastic grocery bags every year.
Fact 3: This year, you can make a difference!
The Green Grocery Bag Challenge is a project to encourage sewists to wrap their holiday gifts in reusable cloth grocery bags, thus reducing the amount of wrapping paper entering the waste stream, while simultaneously getting multi-use bags into the hands of consumers (gift recipients.)
Our goal is to challenge the sewing community to include Mother Earth in their holiday plans.
Get Involved!

The idea that 4 MILLION TONS of waste that is primarily made up of paper and other lightweight items like ribbons boggled my mind. I can't even imagine what sort of volume that would be if you were to spread out even 1 ton of lightweight wrapping waste , let alone 4 Million tons of it. A woman at our guild had the great idea to purchase a set of winter themed king sized flannel sheets on sale at Target for around $15.99 on sale. She was able to make 20 bags out of the one set of sheets and the winter theme insure their future use. I wrapped that little gift above for a friend and the fabric and ribbon are re usable and it took no time to wrap it and it looks adorable. Kristin has been wrapping her gifts in fabric for years and suggests using safety pins to help hold where you need holding.
This year I am using Irene's tutorial for these adorable shopping bags and it will be reusable all year for grocery shopping. Plus I am making additional ones for gifts. Irene told me yesterday that one year she made 32 of them and got it down to 20 minutes per bag!
Here are some additional links for more Green Bag Challenge tutorials and ideas.
Visit The Green Grocery Bag Challenge Facebook page where we're posting links to tutorials, videos and other inspiration. It is also a place where people can go to say, "I'm in!"
Join The Green Grocery Bag Challenge Flickr group to share photos of handmade bags and gifts wrapped in reusable cloth bags
I hope this gets you inspired to join the challenge!


Dogwood said...

I love wrapping gifts in fabric. One year all gifts that I gave were wrapped in muslim. Fun and re-usable.

Jill Bagley said...

i must say i was really sad about trying to possibly use fabric to wrap with----but that looks so cute!!
ill try it.

S said...

Oh my gosh, that is exactly what I am doing this year. After seeing a little turtle with a plastic bag stuck in his mouth on the internet I thought no way I don't want to be a part of that. So I started making cloth grocery bags for my gift giving.