Simply Resourceful

Simple ways to be more conscious about how we use our resources.

Reusable Lunch Bag & Waste-Free Lunch

A good friend of mine (who also sells homemade soap), is a budding seamstress and eager to begin some sewing projects.  In particular, she wants to make lunch bags.  I volunteered to help her even though I'm not an expert at the sewing machine; although I think I acquired through osmosis, some skills from my mother who is a professional seamstress.

I was inspired to use burlap when my friend and I stopped by a local boutique store and saw lunch bags made with burlap.  For the inside liner I used leftover fabric from a curtain project.  The burlap was taken from a coffee bean bag that a picked up from a local coffee store.  The button came from my button jar that I salvaged from some random worn-out shirt long ago; and for the latch I used an elastic band that broke from a pair of shorts I have owned since middle school.  This project cost $0.00.  I really enjoyed making this project because I acquired more skills at the sewing machine.  It is also a practical item I can use for work or wherever.  I recommend hand washing it.


Back/Flap: 6.5 by 14 inches
Front: 6.5 by 8.5 inches
Sides: 5.5 by 8.5 inches
Bottom: 6.5 by 5.5 inches

To make this entry complete, I want to add a few points about making a waste-free lunch.

  • Use durable containers such as Tupperware or Pyrex 
    • Ziploc bags are hard to clean, items are easily smashed and broken, and bags eventually get tossed because of holes and tears.
  • Purchase food items in bulk when possible
    • For example, purchase a large container of yogurt and divide it into small Tupperware containers rather than purchasing the single-serving containers.  You will also save $$.
  • Use durable silverware
    • Plastic silverware break easily and it's probably not safe to eat with plastic, especially with warm items such as soup. 
  • Bring your own cloth napkin and wash it with your towels---save a tree!
  • Use a reusable water bottle or coffee mug
    • Ditch those one-time use water bottles and get a quality, stainless steel, BPA-free water bottle. 


jenn merfee-t April 2, 2011 at 2:11 PM  

That's what our lunches look like, but with a much less attractive bag, of course. I love how it came out, and that you made it with things you had available at no cost. I'd love to get a link to your friend's site to preview soaps and bags.

About this blog

A weekly update on our adventures of trying to be more self-sufficient by using resources wisely. We explore a variety of topics that most broadly fit in the "Homesteading" category, i.e. beekeeping, organic gardening, edible landscaping/fruit forest, food preservation/canning, woodworking, soap-making, and environmental stewardship.

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