Mar 8, 2011

Tablecloth Repurpose Series-Day 1 Reuseable Shopping Bag

The idea for this series came when I was at the thrift store looking for inspiration.  I was hoping something would jump out at me and I would be hit with endless ideas.  That was not the case but as I was about the leave I saw this table cloth (one of those plastic ones) on a shelf and decided that there had to be something I could do with it-$1.99-who could go wrong.  NOTE to those who will be donating their old tablecloths to the thrift store: could you please wash it first and not take it there with remnants of your last meal still on it.
 It sat for a while before I decided that I could do 3 or 4 things different things with it.  Table cloths are pretty large and inexpensive (especially if you get them in an after holiday sale).  They are great for projects that might get dirty or wet because they just wipe clean.  They do however tear fairly easy so avoid anything that will be sharp or pierce the plastic. 
My first idea is:
 A reusable shopping bag.
For this project you will need:
2 pieces of table cloth 24x20 for the bag
2 pieces of table cloth 4 x22
1. Start by cutting your table cloth pieces to size.  You can use a rotary cutter or a pair of scissors.  One thing that is tricky with a table cloth is that you can't iron out the wrinkles so you have to work around folds and wrinkles.  Luckily you don't have to worry about grain or other fabric stretching issues.
 2.  Cut a 4 inch square out from the two bottom corners.
 3.  Place the bag pieces right sides together.
 4.  Sew the bottom seam and the sides seams.  I found that I like serging best, but if you don't have a serger I would recommend sewing twice (one row just inside the other) for extra stability.
 5.  Now open up the bottom corners and bring both cut edges together.  Sew these closed.
 This makes a nice boxed bottom on your bag.  Repeat on the other side.
 6.  Now fold down about a 1/2 inch around the top of the bag.  Don't use pins to hold this as you don't want any extra holes of pokes.  If you want to hold this down use cloths pins.
 7.  Sew around the bottom of the hem.
 8. Now to make the handles-cut your handle pieces 4x22".
 9. Fold in half.  Crease with your finger.  Open and press each side into the middle, then fold in half again.
 10.  Sew along each side of the handle piece.
 11.  Attach your handles to the bag (4" from each corner or about 8 inches from the side seam).  I sewed in a square at the bottom of each handle piece for extra stability.
 That's it.  An easy and useful repurpose project.  Happy Sewing!!

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  1. I am so going to do this!!! Yippee!!! and think of all the different sizes you could daughter could have a matching tote for the farmer's market!

  2. I love this-I have so many of these I don't use anymore. Love the print on the demo too! Too cute

  3. I love every one of these repurposed projects!! I've had a tablecloth and a bib pattern for years and never got around to making one-I'm going to try all of these. They look so easy!

  4. Such an awesome, thrifty idea... and it turned out so cute too! :) I am new visiting your site but it is really cute. I am your newest follower and will be back for more! Take care.
    Humble Homemaking
    p.s. I have a weekend party going on right now so feel free to hook up if you would like to. :)


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