Plastic bags are cheap, they break down, they are convenient to get in bulk, they are light and they are lightweight – but there are a couple of issues with plastic bags. Plastic bags are made of a combination of fossil fuels, chemical process and corn starch which doesn’t make the environment any cleaner. Also, over time plastic bags are constantly being produced and removed from the ocean, then re-manufactured, and then dumped in our streets. All this in the name of convenience.

Of course, there are many bags that are environmentally friendly. A lot of shopping bags now include a woven fabric that has been produced using recycled materials. The materials can be reused and we are then using a renewable resource to make a reusable bag. So canvas bags can be recycled in their entirety. Also the bags are sturdy, quick to wash, soft to touch and breathable so they are a safe option for placing items in.

A few great tips

Pick up a canvas bag, find the style that is perfect for you and the items you need, remember to wash them before using them, this is the only way they will last for longer.

Instead of using the plastic bags, take canvas bags to the shops. Choose one that will fit all your items.

If your canvas bag gets torn at the bottom, stick a piece of cardboard inside to help you hold it up when carrying.

Be careful how you hang your bag in the closet. Instead of hanging it on the top or back, try to hang it towards the front of the closet.

Once your canvas bags are washed they will last for at least 5 years if you regularly clean them.

Print out the shopping list and shopping list ideas to get started. Make a bag for every person in your household, you can get creative with colours, prints, and fun accessories.

It is definitely time to rethink our choice to buy plastic bags, this is the place to start. A step further, look into these reusable bags and get out there and start hanging up canvas bags – don’t wait, start now!

What Canvas Bags Are Typically Made of

Canvas bags usually come in three types of materials, one is a fabric with a cotton/saffron type of thread woven through it. That is the one we normally associate with canvas bags – the fabric that comes in a rainbow of colours. Other types of canvas bags are the kind with a cotton type of thread or a kind that is stronger and heavier, with a thicker weave and stronger material. The fabric is then covered by a fabric made of fibres from corn starch which will allow it to be used multiple times.

As for the overall weight of the bag, canvas bags tend to be heavier – especially if they have a thicker plastic lining inside to keep the bag watertight. If a canvas bag is a thick, heavy material, it can be a bit heavier and heavier than the lightweight fabric bags – especially when the latter has a thinner layer inside. But, when used multiple times, the overall weight of a canvas bag won’t increase significantly.

Zoe Kickhefer