05 April 2008

Earth Day, Part 1: My first canvas bag

Alisa had no idea what she was starting when, for Christmas two years ago, she wrapped up life changes in the form of canvas shopping bags and put them under the tree for her siblings. When the time came to open them, she had us all do it at the same time, I'm sure with some disclaimer that she hoped we understood the greater meaning of this gift (she probably didn't say that).

We were excited, but not exactly sure what to do with them--although we had all seen her religiously carry them in and out of stores, always telling cashiers, "I don't need a bag--I brought my own". She has often been spotted practicing and sharing eco-friendly ideas long before these ideas become mainstream. It just so happened that this one in particular, carrying your own bags into grocery stores, drug stores, ALL stores, was an idea that for me at that time seemed very doable.

It took some time, as all "life changes", if you will, do, but all of the recipients of that Christmas bag are now more conscious of bringing their own bags when shopping. After some months of introducing this habit into my own routine, I realized that one bag was certainly not enough. After inspecting the construction of said bag, I realized I could sew them and limabeanhome was born, first via eBay and now via Etsy. The canvas bags, though now joined by other purses and totes, have remained my top sellers--last year alone I made and sold over 150 bags. (Thanks everyone!).

The patterns for the bags have not changed. They are still simple, sturdy bags made of unbleached cotton canvas begging to be filled with groceries, library books, and snacks for road trips. They love to join you on trips to Target for toiletries and anywhere else you might leave with a plastic bag.

Earth Day is April 22nd. I'm not saying you have to buy my bags. If you've noticed, you can pretty much find reusable shopping bags at every store these days. I'm just saying buy some from somewhere and make that life change that I was encouraged to make over two years ago with this awesome gift. It's actually easier than you think.

Thanks Alisa. You really had no idea.


mindi said...

hooray for reusable shopping bags. soooo much better than those crappy plastic ones!
btw, the medium g diap was way too small for mr. chubbs... luckily my mom was in jersey when i realized that so she brought me back two packs of large. in az now, but gonna strap them on him when we get home!

dogey said...

really? diet pepsi? wow. i'm a little surprised, but i'm okay with it :) i just always remember when i stayed at your house the week before emy and trav's (i think?) wedding, and we drank diet cherry pepsi. that, to me, is the only acceptable form of pepsi :)

ps - the present still hasn't come...i'm losing any remaining faith in the postal service.

Lis said...

Yay! What a nice complimentary post. Really too much credit to me, but nonetheless: hear hear!

Donnie Barnes said...

Few people are doing "more" to save the planet than Al Gore, but Alisa is doing it better. :)

joonbeam said...

Lima, what a great post. Thank you for directing us here! I am glad to find your blog. I just visited your wonderful etsy shop and see you live in Springfield. I lived in Eugene from 1995-99. Thank you for your kind words about my recycling bin diving post, too. I will add your blog to my google reader. Have a great weekend. joon