Garden string crochet bag and other plastic free swaps
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After reading about unusual yarns in my trusty 'A little course in crochet' book and spotting the pattern for a string bag later on in the book, I thought it might be nice to make a reusable shopping bag out of garden twine. I've been on a bit of a plastic free mission lately (more about that later) and I'm always looking for an excuse to crochet!
I picked up some garden string from B&M, it was really cheap and a bargain at £2.99 for 315 meters.
l made a couple of string bags using the pattern from 'A little course in crochet' as presents, one I filled with lovely smellies from Lush, the other one with beer!
If you fancy checking out this book click here. I really do use it all the time. It has all sorts in there, I use it for checking stitches, hook size and stitch conversions and there are some lovely patterns too.
Once I'd got the hang of working with twine, (I found I had to keep my tension a lot looser and it is quite rough on your hands! Keep some hand cream close by!), I then decided to tackle a pattern I had found online, I loved the pineapple design. Here's the link for the free pattern.
The pattern has been converted from a 'chart only' pattern, which is fab because I find written patterns much easier! There were a few errors in the pattern, some are mentioned in the comments at the bottom of the pattern's page, others I had to find out for myself. Quite a lot of frogging went on!
There are 2 size choices, I went for the larger one as the small one looked quite small in the photos, but the large one is really huge! So I did end up buying some more twine to finish the project. It was winter by now so B&M weren't stocking gardening stuff so I ordered this twine off Amazon, which is similar.
It lay in my wip pile for ages, but then I decided to use my time during lockdown to finish all those neglected projects that have been piling up in my crochet corner! (More posts on those coming soon.)
I love this bag and have had lots of lovely comments about it. It turned out huge (I mean huge!) it almost drags on the floor when it's full.
It's great for the park, it fits the picnic blanket, a football, all of the snacks, water bottles the smallest child, everything!
It's also great for the trips to the local shop so I don't need to buy a plastic bag (I just have to remember to take it with me) and as it's made from twine it feels very eco. I've been looking into how I can reduce our use of plastics at home but wanted to find some budget friendly options, here are some easy swaps that we have made:
8 Easy Plastic free swaps
(if your here for the crochet, fear not there are some crocheting ideas below)
Sandwich bags for Tin foil
Tin foil can go in our curbside recycling box so I wrap the kids packed lunch sandwiches in foil now rather than using a sandwich bag.
Epsom salts for Radox
Good old fashioned Radox that comes in a cardboard box. It smells great too.
Clothes washing gel for Washing powder in a box
It's so much cheaper!
Plastic water bottles for A reusable bottle
I got this one from Amazon, because I love a bit of leopard print!
Hand soap/body wash for A bar of soap
You could crochet a soap saver to make the bars last longer.
Butter in a tub for Butter wrapped in paper
I bought a cute butter dish to keep it in and it's so much tastier!
Squeezy honey for Honey in a jar
Ok, so it is a bit of a faff compared to squeezy honey, but it is a lot cheaper.
Make up remover/wipes for Coconut oil
Crochet some washable make up scrubbies and use coconut oil to remove make up.
Plastic bag for String bag
You just need to remember to take it to the shops!
Any other budget plastic swap ideas welcome! Thanks for reading.