I'm still a bit obsessed with the multitude of plastic shopping bags in my life, and in our world. I see the recycling bins at Hannaford and I know that lots of you are recycling these rascals at the retailer. But look what one local crafter is doing. She crochets 60 bags into one great reusable tote and charges $5 to do it! Vera Heuer of Bowdoin says she takes about 6 hours to crochet one of these bags, and she truly enjoys doing it. If you provide the 60 bags needed, she'll charge you $5. If you need her to collect the bags, then she charges $10. A great deal either way. She and I commiserated about how difficult it is to price handmade items, as charging by the hour would make items like this unaffordable for most people. Call Vera at 353-2353 if you would like a bag.
Thank you to Katie Smith (on the Right.) for telling me about these bags and for modeling, along with Heidi Balboni on the Left, how well the bags hold library books. "Vera Bags" no longer mean Bradley nor Wang to me.
Here are more bags crafted from shopping bags. These were made by Bowdoinham's Deb Frizzle (who refused to pose for the picture!) She has been making these for years and has played around with all sorts of designs and patterns. Love the bottle holder. She crochets with a double strand of "Plarn" or plastic yarn, to get this tight, strong weave in her bags.
And yes, this was the inspiration I needed to teach myself how to crochet. I watched a handful of YouTube videos (is there a limit to what you can learn via YouTube?) and I jumped in to make this project using this free online pattern. I ended up with a completely saggy bag but I will certainly carry it proudly to the farmers' market this summer. And I won't compare it to the professional's bags that inspired it!