Create a fashionable one-of-a-kind sling water bottle bag out one of the reusable shopping bags gathering dust in your closet!
Are you starting the new year off with a mission to hydrate more too? Well, if you’ve got an hour, this post is here to help with a cute sling water bottle bag made out of a reusable shopping bag!
Sure you can find reusable water bottles with a carabiner to carry them around. But I find those awkward and much prefer to carry water in a water bottle sling when we visit our favourite antique stomping grounds (see if it’s Spring, it must be antiquing time).
Funnily enough, there’s a weird paradox when it comes to the balance of stuff in our household. Even though we probably own over a dozen tape measures, it’s a sad fact that we can never find one when we need it. However, for every tape measure that disappears, we seem to gain another reusable shopping bag. Go figure.
The avalanche of non woven shopping bags that spill out when we open the hall door belies the fact that there’e only two people in our household. Two people can’t possible eat enough groceries to warrant the growing numbers.
Because our local organic store is actually using biodegradable plastic bags now, we take the lazy way out and use those. However, if they get phased out too, our collection of non-woven bags will be better put to use! Until then, here’s a useful idea if you’re overrun by those endlessly multiplying reusable grocery bags too!
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Creative Craft Hop
It’s time for another Creative Craft blog hop! So if you are visiting from Niki at Life as a LEO Wife welcome! At the very bottom of this post, I’ll be directing you to the next stop on this venture. But don’t forget to check out the other stops too because you’ll find plenty more ideas. Be sure to drop back in throughout the week to visit them all!
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Sling Water Bottle Bag Supplies
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- Grocery Bag
- Sewing machine
- Stainless steel water bottle
- Grid ruler
- Grommet + grommet pliers
- Nylon cord
- Carabiner (optional)
- Plastic cord lock
- Fabric sheers
- Pointed scissors
- Chalk pencil (our fave is Fons and Porter)
How Do you Make a Bottle Carrier?
How great is it to make a practically free bag to carry water bottles? There are five easy steps to making a sling water bottle bag, broken down as follows:
- Cut up a reusable grocery bag, leaving the handle intact
- Sew side seams and bottom
- Cut and stitch casing, adding a grommet
- Insert cord
- Add cord lock
Sling Water Bottle Bag
1. Cut Up Grocery Bag
If you’re using a black bag like us, and want to add an emblem on the front, be sure to hide any printing on the inside or use a piece without.
We’re using every single part of the bag we can. To start, use a stitch ripper to harvest the trim from the reusable grocery bag. Don’t cut off the handle; this will be the shoulder sling.
Measure the height of your reusable water bottle allowing for seam allowance and cut to length. I’m using the full width of the bag – handle and all.
I’m using upcycled cord from another bag, but use new cord if necessary!
Now cut two circles (to double up the bottom for strength). You’ll see on the video that I actually stitch the layers together before I cut around the circle.
Using a chalk pencil, trace around a circle. Also add on seam allowance (the cutting line) with a grid ruler. Cardboard from Duck tape happens to be perfect for this, or use a compass.
If you need to iron out wrinkles, be careful. Plastic melts easily so use a cloth and a low setting on your iron.
2. Sew sling water bottle bag
Place any kind of patch, or sports team emblem, onto the front of the bag you like.
Of course, we printed our own Birdz of a Feather logo to personalize it (see how to print on canvas). Finish the raw edges with the trim saved from the bag.
Pin the emblem onto the centre of one half of the bag and then stitch around. Actually, if you want, you can create a water bottle sling with pocket just by leavinge an opening at the top!
Fold the wrong sides of the bag together, emblem side out. Stitch a 1/4″ seam down the side.
Using more of the trim that was saved earlier, fold it around the raw edges of the bag and stitch it down using a 1/4″ seam allowance. Cut away the excess length of trim.
You’ll have a beautiful seam like this:
Pin the double layer circle onto the bottom of the bag, wrong sides together, and stitch around the perimeter using 1/4″ seam allowance. Again, cover the edges with trim. Cut away the excess length.
3. cut and stitch Casing
Now we’ll stitch a casing on the top of the bag to hold the drawstring closure.
Cut a piece 2″ wide; don’t worry about the length as that will be cut away at the sewing machine.
Fold one end of the casing about an inch or so to accommodate the grommet. Double fabric will be more durable to secure the grommet. Use your pointy scissors to make a starter hole in the centre of one end as shown.
Don’t be tempted to cut a hole or it will weaken the grommet; the goal is to stretch the fabric. Insert a pencil into the starter hole to stretch it wide enough to fit over the post of the grommet.
Sandwich the hole between the two halves of the connecting grommets.
Then use a grommet plier to squeeze the two pieces of metal together.
Fold in the ends under along the length. Finger press and pin.
Now stitch along both ends.
4. Insert Cord
Thread one end of the cord through the eye of a bodkin. Insert it into the grommet and thread it all the way around the casing and back out the other side.
5. Add Cord Lock
Squeeze the plastic cord lock to open it, thread the two ends of the cord through and release the lock. Notice that you can colour coordinate your cord lock to your emblem or go for black if that’s all you can find! Tie each end of the cord into the knot (if the ends are strayed, you can trim them or carefully pass a lighter over them to fuse and seal the edges together).
Your water holder bag is ready for a water bottle!
However, before you decide whether to use a reusable water bottle or a PET plastic one, consider this:
Are Water bottles Bad for the Environment?
Are Water Bottles Recyclable?
Not every community has a recycle program. For those that do in Canada, we have an ok recovery rate; about 79% for PET bottles (which water bottles are made of). As a matter of fact Canada sells much of our water bottle waste as ‘fibre’ to the U.S. to turn into cute rugs at stores like Walmart. For example, this textured area rug or this abstract rug or this beautiful bohemian style rug that looks like one of those high end over dyed rugs.
But Canada is just a fraction of the waste pie in North America. In 2017, only 29% of plastic bottles were recovered in the U.S. The rest ends up in landfill or, unfortunately, in our oceans (which we wrote about when we participated in the Crochet Coral Reef).
It’s a personal choice, but for us, we’ll stick with a reusable water bottle.
Use the shoulder strap to carry it when you’re on the go. You’ll notice that our bag is extra long to carry a large stainless steel water bottle. But it also doubles as a wine holder too!
Pin Sling Water Bottle Bag
If you want to make a sling water bottle bag, pin for later!
Creative Craft Hop
Now it’s time to check out the Easter DIY Riser from Terrie at Decorate & More with Tip. When you’re done, please remember to visit these other amazing talents below:
- Denim Hearts
- Valentines Day Gift Idea and Valentine Cards
- DIY Farmhouse Style Valentine Centerpiece
- Sling Water Bottle (that’s us)
- Easter DIY Riser (link in paragraph above)
- Valentine Gifts for the Cook or Chef
- DIY Woven Heart Shaped Box
- Framed Vintage Valentine Upcycle
- Winter White Grapevine Wreath
- DIY Dollar Tree Valentine Door Hanger