Plastic bags can become so numerous, they just seem to ooze from every storage area of my kitchen. Recently, I have started to find ways to reuse and recreate plastic bags beyond the regular, every day uses. If you are new to reusing plastic bags, here are several simple and useful ways to reuse those pesky plastic bags.
Top 15 Ways to Reuse Plastic Bags:
1. Use as trashcan liners
2. Keep in the car for emergency sick bags
3. Throw in your diaper bag for dirty diapers and clothes
4. Organize like items in the freezer, or play area by containing similar items in one bag.
5. Wrap fragile items into your Christmas boxes to keep safe
6. Use as a substitute for packing peanuts when mailing packages
7. Tie up stinking items into the bags before throwing away to avoid smelly trash.
8. Place food inside plastic bag before placing in a lunch box for a waterproof seal.
9. Keep puzzle from falling out of old boxes by bagging the pieces first
10. Donate! Used bookstores, libraries, thrift stores, and food pantries will all accept bags as donations.
11. Make Parachutes for action figures, simply cut out a square shape from the bag and gather the corners together. Use a hole punch in each corner, tie a string to each corner, securing it with a knot.
12. Use them to stuff large pillows cases and seal the pillowcase shut with hot glue, iron-on fabric seam tape or velcro tape to secure it close to make a homemade Pet bed.
Even with all the regular ways to use bags, I never seem to run out! Sometimes, I believe they are starting to multiply under my sink. I have found a few creative ways which are reusable and give me the ability to use the bags again and again without a one-time reuse and then just throwing them away. After all, the purpose of keeping them is to reduce waste and plastic bags do not recycle.
13. Craft Mats
Kids love to create. However, with creativity comes a big mess! You could create reusable craft mats with old plastic bags. First, take a set of plastic bags, cut off the handles and then cut the bag open to lay flat. Repeat 4 times, stacking each layer on top of each other. Next, use a warm iron to fuse the bags together.
Be sure to put wax paper under the bottom and over the top layer of the bag to avoid melting the bags. It only takes a quick second to melt the bags so be careful. It does not take much heat to fuse the bags together. Let cool and the mats are ready to use. You could reuse these over and over.
14. Reusable Cloth Bags
Reusable cloth bags reduce environmental waste and help to avoid collecting more of these pesky bags. Use the plastic bags to reinforce and create a waterproof seal inside cloth bags. You could either add to the cloth bags you already possess or get crafty and make your own. Repeat the process of cutting the plastic bags and laying flat. Iron 5-8 layers together with a warm iron.
Remember to have wax paper separating the plastic bags from the iron and the ironing board. Once cooled, place your new thick, fused plastic bags inside a cloth bag. Secure each side together using craft glue, staples, or heavy duty sewing thread. Cut the fused bags to match the sides of your cloth to ensure full coverage. You could also cut to make smaller versions and use as reusable sandwich and storage bags.
15. Make Your own Plarn– If you’re not familiar with plarn, It is plastic yarn made from grocery bags. Crocheting and knitting with plarn is a fun and eco-friendly way to reduce environmental waste and make durable totes and baskets for free.