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newspaper bag

Image via: mommysavers.com

Another Monday, another craft predicament for Designer MacGyver. Two installments ago, I suggested some fun projects made with cardboard toilet paper rolls, but commenter Carolyn wanted to know what to do with “the colorful narrow plastic bags that my newspaper comes in on a rainy day.” So, now there’s a new mission: Keep plastic bags out of landfills and waterways (think of the sea turtles!) by turning them into adorable home decor. Carolyn, this one’s for you.

plastic bag coasters
Crocheted coasters from plastic bags? Who would have guessed that trips to the curb to pick up the paper or trips to the grocery store to pick up dinner could end up being so creative? Head to Country Woman‘s site to get all the instructions.

plastic bag flower

Even if you have a black thumb, you can make your own blooms with this Silly Simple Living flower tutorial. The white plastic petals look elegant, but for a little more flower power, use those rainbow-hued newspaper bags!

plastic bag placemats

Have extra plarn (that’s plastic yarn, MacGyvers) and extra time? If you’ve mastered the coasters above, try your hand at crocheting some placemats, as seen on Creative Jewish Mom. Teatime just got a lot more quirky and colorful.

plastic bag wall art

Plastic bag art might seem a little off the wall…until you see it on the wall, that is. If you have lots of varied bags, you can experiment with making mandalas. Check out Virginia Fleck’s pieces for more inspiration.

plastic bag flower pot

Finally, trade in a blah planter for a plastic bag flower pot, like the one Petra whipped up over on Mami Made It. Recycling plastic bags and growing plants? It doesn’t get any more “green” than that, folks.

So, which craft do you think saved the day? And do you have any requests for this Designer MacGyver? Let ‘em fly in the comments!



51 Responses

  1. AJsMIMI says:

    Great ideas better than fighting with with the cat when she drags the ploastic bags out of where I stash them

  2. Christopher Kandrat says:

    So awesome usually chuck the bags, but these are some awesome ideas, love it.

  3. granny2 says:

    We have a group in our area that crochet the plastic bags into sleeping mats for displaced people in Africa and other poor countries. They request that if you give them bags that you flatten them to aid in cutting them for crocheting.

    • Mdavidson says:

      Can you post a picture and instructions on how to do these mats?

      • vivandgarris says:

        shoppping bags. fold in haif. cut off handles and top edge of bag so that you have a flat working space. Measure 3 inches cut crosswise to end. throw away left over. this will give you loops. Now you will loop them together and pull until you have a neat knot. Continue until you can make a ball . this takes many loops to make a ball. You will crochet a chain with the largest crochet hook they make. it is plastic and blue. Crochet a chain of 40 stitches which will be the width. Turn sc in 4th chain from hook.and across to the end of ch. Ch 2 sc across row to end and sc in ch 2, turn and repeat until it measures approx.5 feet. Good luck . God allowed me to make 12 and send to Tenn. for homeless under bridges.Put out a fleece at church and friends to save bage for you. I was amzed at the response i recieved. Sorry I didn'tmake a picture. They were pretty because of all the different colors of each bag. Walmart is where i bought my needle

    • Patricia Monroe says:

      I acquire plastic bags that my daily newspaper comes in and want to donate them to your cause.
      Please let me know where to deliver or send them. what you are doing is wonderful.

  4. [...] Read the full article here: Designer MacGyver: 5 Clever Plastic Bag Crafts [...]

  5. christian says:

    my mother has a group in my country to treath and make some art with plastic paper. now they want to make it indistrual because it is not easy to make everything with hand. do somebody knows if it is possible to get some machine to treath and also realize some art product. thank u

  6. Debbie says:

    My mom used to do this as well. She even used old nylon stockings and cut them into strips and made rugs…. they never wore out. !!!

  7. Patricia says:

    I applaud and adore the creativity of this plastic art craft. They essentially have done the environment a favor by not contributing with the landfill. We can do more with plastic machining being converted into a work station.

  8. Juami Manaloto says:

    Here we have a perfect example of how good plastic can look. It doesn't have to be new plastic used. Some clever plastic machining can easily turn even the trashiest of plastic into nice little works of art.

  9. In 1971, Bill Chase and his jazz/rock fusion group Chase recorded a version as a single. It was included on their 1971 debut album Chase. It was sung by Ted Piercefield.

  10. Barry Rudd says:

    She often tells outlandish tales about the beings in her handbag and blames them for her overdue movies and library books. Things take a turn for the worse when Genevieve's boyfriend, Jake, snatches Zofia's handbag with the intent of finding out if the stories about it are true.

Briana MowreyBriana is a writer and senior editor for HGTV.com. Her self-described design style is "mid-century modern magpie." She lives in a Brooklyn apartment with her husband, their spoiled dachshund, Chauncey,...


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