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Upcycling a cloth shopping bag into a firewood carrier.

Living with a wood stove is not too bad however, it does require one to carry wood fairly often.  Sure, you can load up one arm with the other but this is uncomfortable for carrying more than a few pieces at a time.   They sell these firewood carriers  for $22 at Lehman’s.  I needed one and I have big sheet of canvas that I was going to use to make one then I had an idea.  Why not make one out of a cloth shopping bag.  I have tons of them, for a while there everyone was giving them away and I have like 20 of them.  So here goes.

Upcycling is an important homesteader, hacker and maker skill.  It is basically taking something that is useless or less useful in its current form and modifying it.  The best part is that it usually does not cost much or anything at all.  In this case I already had the bags and thread.  For a small time investment I have a really nice firewood carrier.

Items Needed:

  • Cloth Shopping Bag

  • Scissors

  • Needle and thread

  • Sharp knife of seam ripper

Here is the bag that I started with.  Given to me as a set of 5 from Google when they visited my work.

 

 

I Ripped the seams of the side of the bag.  I chose this bag because of the 4 panel construction.  The piece that the handle is sewn to was one piece and the sides were sewn on to it.  Making it perfect for this project.

 

 

Here is the bad with the 4 seams ripped out.  You can see the shape of the bag.  I just trimmed the short sides with a scissors and cut off the material that was covering the seams.

 

 

On the panels that I trimmed I folded them under and pinned them for sewing.

 

 

 

Here you can see both sides pinned and ready to sew.

 

 

 

Please ignore my awful sewing job here.  I go for function not looks.  I could have fired up the sewing machine but it was so little sewing, I didn’t feel like setting it up since we moved and took it apart.

 

 

Immediately after sewing it, I had to try it out so here is the firewood carrier out at the wood shed waiting to be filled with wood.

 

 

The wife is filling the firewood carrier while I cheer her on and take photos.

 

 

 

Here is the wife modeling the finest in Northland Fall Fashions.  The upcycled, shopping bag firewood carrier.

 

 

 

The firewood carrier from another angle.

 

 

 

Closeup.

 

 

 

This carrier is nice because you can set down the logs and the pile does not roll around while you open the door.  It also keeps all the wood shavings, and bark chips inside it so you can just bring it outside and shake it out when you come get more wood.

This project took about 1 hour from start to finish and I am really happy with the outcome.  I think I might try making a few more of them once I get the sewing machine set up.  I do think that the handles are a bit long on this bag so I might trim them or take them off and sew on handles that wrap around the bottom so they are less likely to rip off from the weight of the wood.

Hack, Make, Repair and Upcycle.  Break the cycle of conspicuous consumption.
-TM

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