Re-usable shopping bags?
Seven years ago on my honeymoon cruise, when the ship docked on Catalina Island, I found a string shopping bag– one of those crocheted string things that squeezes down into almost nothing but seems to expand almost endlessly as it fills with things. (We almost missed the last shuttle back to the cruise ship buying it, but that’s another story.) This was of course before you could find re-usable bags selling for 99 cents at every grocery store in the world, but I still use the thing.
Now, of course, lots of people are bringing their own bags for grocery shopping. Since I have a memory like a cheezy plastic trap, those big things they sell in the stores are worse than useless to me; I need something that can live in my purse and not flop around the inside of my car all the time. My old string bag from Catalina absolutely fits the bill. But despite being almost infinitely expandable and really strong, it is at last beginning to wear out. So I am starting to look for the next one.
So…I check out “Earth-Saks” (http://www.earthsaks.com/buysaks.html) reusable bags. They fold up into a nice little pouch, which I really like the idea of. And there’s also a mesh produce bag which looks handy.
Reusable bags seem to be a big item these days–a google search for “string shopping bags” got a huge number of hits and a dozen good sites right off the bat–there was www.ecobags.com (these have wider shoulders…looks nice and much more comfy than the skinny straps!), and www.reusablebags.com (I think the first one listed there under string bags is just like my Catalina bag), there are directions for how to knit (http://sewintriguing.blogspot.com/2008/09/string-bag-instructions.html) or sew (http://tipnut.com/35-reusable-grocery-bags-totes-free-patterns/” different kinds of bags to take with you…
(Honestly, though–directions for how to sew a reusable bag? I mean, not to be obtuse or snooty, but what’s to explain? Heck, if that’s what you want, bring a pillowcase, you know?)
It’s been another of those adjustment things for me, but especially where a bag that expands so much is concerned, I feel like switching from grocery bags to these reusable string ones is a fairly low-stress switch to avoiding generating more garbage…
Besides, with all you can fit in one–one of these bags can take what would take 3 or 4 paper bags and God knows how many of those stupid plastic ones. (You know, the ones they usually put about 2 or 3 items in?), so it’s also easier to get them into the house.
Reusable bags. Think about it.