I may be the Christmas Scrooge when it comes to single use wrapping paper, especially the foil stuff, everything really that doesn’t break down in the compost heap.  Every Christmas I wonder if someone has done the science experiment comparing how long foil wrapping paper takes to break down in landfill, especially with all the talk about removing single use plastics and foil from our kitchens and our lives.

So…. putting my money where my mouth is I started making these simple drawstring bags to put Christmas presents in.  A couple every year introducing them slowly, there may have been some resistance to them at first when Lil was younger and didn’t realise the environmental impact of wrapping paper, she loved the wrapping paper as much as the next child does!  If I am the bad cop when it comes to wrapping paper, tinsel and cheap taa daa Christmas ornaments, Michael is definitely the good cop, he and Lil love a cheap gaudy Christmas globe or decoration, they just seem to appear in our house, so do the rolls of wrapping paper.  I am going with the theory that none of us are perfect and we do the best we can on any given day, a bit like the person who swore she had a sugar free, vegan diet but guess who I saw in the supermarket with  c*k* cola and chicken nuggets in her trolley, we have all had double standards at some stage haven’t we!


Different size bags, some with & some without drawstrings.

The bags I make to put Christmas presents in are stored with the Christmas decorations and I wash them each year before they go into storage and then when they come out of storage. The red gingham bags are made from a near new table cloth that had a large coffee spill up one end, the red bags are made from a pair of cotton summer pants I made Lil one year when she was little and she quickly out grew them, all perfectly good fabric that would have gone to waste if I hadn’t found a new purpose for it.

When we first started making and collecting Christmas decorations we decided on a colour scheme predominantly using traditional dark green, red, white, silver and gold, then everything kind of matches.

A $2 tea towel made from 100% cotton minus the doily for the bloke in the house!

These drawstring bags made from a tea towel also make great bread bags to store your homemade loaf in or to take to the shop when you buy a loaf instead of using a paper or plastic bag.  Great for book bags, a small craft project or toys when you are out and about. I’ll be writing a separate tutorial this week if you are interested in making some. The bags made from a tea towel take approximately 20 minutes to make.


Made from an Ikea tea towel (cost less than $1) & a thrift shop doily. A bread bag at the health food shop last week was priced at $21.99.

Let me know if you make some, I would love to see them!

Jude x


Wrapping Paper vs. Reusable Bags.

December 3, 2018



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