Updated: Feb 18, 2022
Ditch those trashy, tasteless plastic bags and make your own fun, stylish reusable snack bags instead. Great for kids or adults, these bags can be made in any size, with any fabric. No sewing machine required (but you can use it, if you want!).
STEP ONE: Choose your fabric and your pull-string. Arguably, the most important step, you’ll need to choose a fabric you love (or that your kids love). I like to use old napkins or shirts, but fabric remnants or, yes, even new fabric, will work equally well. If you’re worried about the chemicals in fabrics, choose an organic fabric. You’ll also need some yarn, ribbon, or even an old shoelace for a pull-string.I keep old clothes, napkins, and the like with cool patterns to use for projects like this. My daughter liked the horses on these old pajama pants.
STEP TWO: Cut your fabric and pull-string to size. You can make your bag any size you want, but I recommend somewhere around the size of a sandwich bag (there’s a reason why those plastic baggies are so popular). Cut a rectangle somewhere around 14 inches wide and 7 inches high. Your pull-string will need to be 18 inches or so (a few inches longer than the width).
Nothing about this has to be perfect. Just have fun with the project.
STEP THREE: Sew your hem. For the pull-string to work, you’ll need to create a hem around the top of your bag. Turn it upside down and fold over the top 1/2 inch (see picture) and sew along the edge (if you’re using a thick ribbon, just make sure it’ll fit inside the hem).
STEP FOUR: Thread your pull-string. Knot your pull string to a paperclip or safety pin and push it all the way through the hem. Don’t tie it yet.
STEP FIVE: Sew up your bag. Fold your bag right side to right side and stitch along the bottom and side. Keep your stitches small so the snacks don’t fall out. Don’t sew over the hemline or your pull string won't work.
STEP SIX: Tie your pull-string. Tie the two ends of your string together (leave about an inch or two). Turn the knot into the hem as far as you can. Check to make sure the pull-string works before you give it to your kids.