Twenty five percent!
That’s one million extra tons of trash!
So what can we do about it?
Buy less. The fewer gifts we buy the less packaging and wrapping materials we will need to dispose of.
Get creative with gift wrap. Use newspaper, butcher paper, recycled wrapping paper, old maps, gift bags (that can be reused over and over), reusable shopping bags (which can be part of the gift), a bucket or watering can, old scarves, a DIY gift bag… the list goes on and on.
I’ve finally found the time to make a DIY gift bag this year and I realized that they are really simple to make. Definitely worth the 20 minutes.
Easy Fabric DIY Gift Bag
What you need:
- Fabric of choice (craft fabric works fine)
- Sewing machine or needle and thread
- ribbon of choice (I used a piece of leftover tulle)
What you do: Cut fabric to the size you need. It can be any size depending on your gift. Mine was already 11 inches tall and then I cut it into 10 in wide rectangles. The bags turned out to be about 10 inches tall and 4 inches wide. Fold the top of the fabric down about a ¼ in (or however big you want the seam to be) and iron in place. Sew a straight stitch across being sure to start and end with a backstitch so that the seam won’t unravel. Fold your fabric right sides together with your new seam at the top. Iron in place. Sew a straight stitch down the side seam. When you get near the bottom just pivot the fabric (leave the needle down, lift the presser foot, pivot fabric, lower the presser foot) and keep going across the bottom. I cut the corner of the fabric to make the corners less bunchy when they are turned right sides out. It’s not mandatory though :) There you have it! Just fill them and throw a bow on it. Done and done! This DIY gift bag was FREE to make since I had the fabric, tulle and thread already laying around. if you don’t have holiday fabric (I was surprised that I did!) You can make really pretty bags from just about any fabric (try a neutral color like white, brown, or tan) and add holiday ribbon. Blue is also a great color for winter holidays.
Full disclosure: I don’t think I will use these bags this year. I made them too small for my gifts :( I think I’ll go with my old standby (paper gift bags from years past) and save these for next year.