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DIY Wetbag From Those Useful Plastic Mattress Zipper Bags

upcycled zipper bag

Have you ever wondered what to do with those really neat plastic zipper bags you get with sheets and mattresses?  I have a whole stash of them because they are just too cool to throw away!

upcycled zipper bag

I decided I needed more wetbags for my reusable wipes that I carry around everywhere. These aren’t completely waterproof, but they work for things like wet wipes and toiletry items. I just love useful things!  The only issue is…. these aren’t the right size, and they are just clear.  I like things to be practical AND pretty!  This is also a great way to use up some scrap fabric too! The fabric I used has been in my scrap bag for YEARS just waiting to be used.

upcycled zipper bag

Okay, so this is what I did…..

Gather your supplies

  • Plastic bag
  • Scrap fabric fit to the size of your bag x2
  • Thread and Machine

Cut your plastic bag to the size you want.

upcycled zipper bag

Mine just happened to be the right width for what I wanted.  If your bag is too wide, this project will have to be tweaked a bit.  You’ll need to cut the zipper to the width you need.  Make sure you get the head of the zipper in with your cut, and you should just be able to snip the rest of the zipper off and sew the end and sides of plastic up.

Sew your fabric together

So, I made this bag where the pretty fabric shows from the front and the back, but is still on the outside of the plastic so it doesn’t ruin from whatever you put in the bag.

First you need to figure out how much fabric you need, I just set the bag on top of it and marked where to cut on the wrong sides of the fabric.  I then cut two pieces, for the front view and back.

upcycled zipper bag

Sew the pretty sides together, leaving the bottom open, then flip.

upcycled zipper bag

Set this aside for now

Sew your bag together

upcycled zipper bag

So, you cut your bag to the right size already.  Now you need to sew it up.  Flip the bag inside out, and sew the bottom and sides if needed.  I only needed to sew the bottom together since my width was already what I wanted.

Sew the fabric to your plastic.

upcycled zipper bag

This turned out a little more difficult then I expected.  It is do-able, though. You just need to manhandle that plastic!! Show it who is boss!

Don’t forget to turn everything right side out. Then just sew your plastic to your fabric.  I just put the finished ends of the fabric starting at the zipper end then sewed all the way around, following the seam that was already there.  Then snip off the excess fabric at the bottom!

upcycled zipper bag

Voilà!  (yes, I had to look up how to spell that word… Don’t judge me)

upcycled zipper bag

Hope you enjoy!! It’s not the prettiest thing I’ve ever made… but I love making practical things pretty.  I also love up-cycling things into something I can use every day!!

upcycled zipper bag

Here’s a pretty Pin for your Pinterest!

zipper bag

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Start your disposable free home with our DIY Homemade Reusable Cloth Wipes

face cleaning wipes, green animal print wipes, cloth wipes

Are you tired of spending money on disposable products?  Have you learned how many chemicals they can contain that aren’t so great for us or the environment? What about how much waste is put into our landfills that won’t degrade for another lifetime?trash, landfill, litter

So, let’s talk about cost.

The cheapest disposable wipes I can find, for the sake of this research, are about 1 cent each.  I wouldn’t personally recommend these, they are chalk full of chemicals and are poor quality, but, the cheapest option.  From birth to potty training (we are going to say three years old, which is sparing for some kids) I’ll estimate that you use two wipes per diaper change (ha! Any parent knows this is a VERY low estimate, perhaps not even realistic).  Say you only change 6 diapers a day (yeah, right).  At these very low estimates, we are looking at 12 wipes/day @ 360 days a year for three years.  Thats 12, 960 cents.  Divided by 100 to convert to dollars = $129.60.  That’s not a whole lot over the span of three years, I’ll admit. Keep in mind my low estimates and that you are using the cheapest/lowest quality wipes on the market.  Also, who uses wipes JUST for diaper changes?  I use them for EVERYTHING.  Plus, there were some diaper changes that I used at least 10 wipes (when I used disposable).  Plus, look at all those wipes you are throwing into the environment.  How many was that? Almost 13,000!! Yes, there are more eco-friendly wipes with less chemicals, but the cost goes up astronomically.

chemicals

I’m not going to talk about chemicals because I’m not qualified to say exactly what they put in wipes that are “toxic” or cause reactions.  I don’t like uneducated assumptions about certain things.  I have taken many, many chemistry classes and I can tell you now that chemistry has a bad rep.  I do know they have harsh chemicals, but this is not the reason we don’t use them. I don’t use them just for the fact they are a disposable product that puts more trash in our landfill. I’m just mentioning this aspect because it IS more leverage to switching to cloth!

My method to switching over to cloth wipes is possibly free for you, assuming you have a sewing machine and thread available (using materials you already have around the house)! It just takes a little time and practice!

pink wipes, pink face wipes, purple face wipes, girl wipes, cloth diapers, go green, reusable wipes

If you don’t want to make them, the cost of choosing wipes is pretty minimal.  The wipes I make are about 1.30/wipe.  If you use the same estimates I did earlier in the post, you’ll need 12/day.  If you do laundry every other day, you’ll need 24 wipes.  Remember, I’m using sparing numbers, but I have to say, cloth wipes are more durable and you don’t have to use as many per change.  So… 24 wipes.  That’s $31.20.  You’ll be using these SAME wipes over the next 3 years and BEYOND.  They don’t take any extra laundry either.  Just throw them in the wash with the cloths or towels.  I like that number way better than $130!  Plus, you aren’t throwing anything away!  Let’s not mention the cute prints and the versatility of these wipes either, that would just be way too much!!

So now that you have the main reasons, let’s look at how to make them!

Homemade wipes are a great, easy solution for getting started on your journey to less disposables!  If you are looking for an easy project to sew up in just a few minutes, then this is for you!  They literally take about 10 minutes, start to finish.  You can use them out of almost anything flannel or terry too!  I use these wipes for baby wipes, face wipes, and cleaning cloths.  They are really versatile and have endless possibilities.

So how do you get started?  Do you have any left over baby receiving blankets, flannel shirts or sheets, towels, or blankets?  Any of those make great upcycle materials for wipes.  Or if you don’t want to MAKE them, I make them and sell them in my store!  You can get all kinds of cute prints.

These are from cute receiving blankets I found at a thrift store for about a dollar for a set of three.

receiving blanket, upcycling, flannel, cloth wipes

Find your cute print, and cut 2 squares of about 7×7 fabric (but any size works, I have all different sizes). To make it easiest, I have a cardboard template that I cut around with my rotary cutter.

cloth wipes, sewing project

Put the pretty sides together and sew a straight stitch all the way around, leaving about an inch or so open.

Pull the right sides of the fabric out through that hole you left open.  You can iron everything down to make the edges pretty.

Sew around the edges and close the hole and you’re done!

cloth wipes, upcycled sewing project, baby wipes, green products

Here’s a pretty pin for Pinterest for you!

If you like this project, you would probably also love my farmhouse napkins and upcycled burp cloths!

 

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DIY Burp cloths from Receiving Blankets!

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As many of you know already, I am due with a baby any time now! We are exactly a month away from him making his grand arrival! I have recently picked up sewing baby items like wipes, burp cloths, clothes, etc.  It has been so much fun learning all the new techniques I didn’t know.  So I’m going to show you today how to make your own DIY burp cloths!

I love making old things into something new!  I made a set of burp cloths out of an old receiving blanket I picked up at the thrift store and left over flannel my MIL gave me.  They were a perfect match.  I will probably make a set of matching wipes to go with them. Flannel is the perfect absorbent material for this type of project, and it’s so easy to work with!

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This project is super easy!  All you need is two layers of flannel fabric from old materials. If you don’t have flannel, old towels and pillowcases would do the trick! There are all kinds of goodies already in your house if you look hard enough!

I didn’t use a pattern, I just cut out a shape from both fabrics.

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Put the pretty sides together, and sew! I just use a regular straight stitch for this.

Leave a little gap, and pull out the right sides of your fabric.

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I recommend you iron it to make everything pretty and even.  I didn’t, but for my purposes, I really didn’t need to.

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Sew on a top stitch and close the little hole you left open.  That’s it!

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The longest part of this is cutting everything out.

Go scour the thrift shops for something fun to upcycle! You would be surprised what you can find there. Little hidden treasures all over the place.

Have you also looked at my DIY farmhouse style napkins?  They are a really great project to start your journey in using less paper products!  And, like this project, they are SUPER easy!

Here’s a nice pin for your DIY pinterest board. 🙂