March 19, 2014

{Make It!} Simple & Pretty Grocery Bag Saver

I am an organizing freak. That’s just one of those things about me that will never change. The hubs thinks I’m nuts because I literally have anxiety attacks when everything is a mess. You've heard of Bridezilla? Well I’m Cleanzilla. I can’t help it! I just hate clutter with a passion.

That’s not to say that my house is perfect, clean and organized. It’s not by a long shot.  

I mean, a. I have a one year old who literally wobbles around behind me pulling out everything I just meticulously cleaned and put away and b. We only moved in our new house about a month and a half ago and nothing really seems to have found a “home” yet
I finally decided I just couldn't take it anymore, so now I’m determined to slowly get my whole house organized! 

First up was our pantry. It was a hot mess, put nicely. I’ll share more on how I organized ours in a later post but working on this task brought a major issue to light. 

That issue would be the massive blob also known as grocery bags from shopping trips past. There were about a million of them and no amount of stuffing and shoving was making them take up less room or look prettier. If you save yours as well then I'm betting you understand my pain. 

So I put my thinking cap on, grabbed a few things I had around the house and this was the outcome...

 So here's what you'll need:


Double Sided Tape

An Empty Lysol Wipe Container

Pretty Wrapping Paper 
(I got mine 2 for 5.99 at Hallmark. That's still expensive for my taste but they were just so pretty!)

Clear Laminate Paper

Grocery Bags (Of course!)

First up, you'll want to strip the Lysol wipe container of the label (I didn't worry about stripping the container of the glue and that ended up helping me out later on). 

Next, spread out your wrapping paper and place your Lysol wipe container in one of the corners.

Roll the container over, along with one end of the wrapping paper, and place a small mark on the wrapping paper where the two ends meet. 

You'll also want to place a mark at the desired height. You can measure the height of the Lysol wipe container to get it perfect, I just estimated it. 

After that you can cut the paper in line with the marks you placed. The wrapping paper I used had printed lines on the back and that made it so much easier to get it cut straight!

I would also highly recommend that at this point you use the piece of wrapping paper you just cut as a guide to cut your piece of clear laminate as well. 

To attach the paper to the container, I used the line shown below as a guide to make sure it was positioned straight. 

Once it was in the position that I wanted I placed a couple of small pieces of double sided tape on the paper and container, wrapped the rest of the paper around, and pressed lightly to join the edges. 

At this point I slacked a little with the pictures, mainly because it's not easy trying to position clear laminate with just one hand! 

The laminate I used is here and you just follow the same steps that are outlined above. This step is important because you don't want your wrapping paper to tear in the future!

Now for stocking your new dispenser. 

I'd like to say that you can just stuff as many bags as you want in there and you're done, but nope! The lazy part of me tried. It didn't work. 

You'll want to lay about 13-15 grocery bags (for a small container, you can use more if you have a bigger one) on a flat surface with the handles overlapping.

Fold the handle of the first bag upwards, this will be your starting point once they are placed in the container

Then you just start rolling, making sure to tuck the handles of all the bags in as you go. You might have some issues with air in the bags. Don't worry I did too. Just continue to push down on the bags to get the majority of it out. 

As a side note here, don't roll them up too tight. I made that mistake the first time and had to redo this! 

When you are done it'll look like this. 

Then you just pop this in your container, pull the handle through the opening in the top, and you're done!

I absolutely love this little container! It only took about 10 minutes in all and it's so pretty I can just leave it out on the counter as eye candy. 

I plan on making another small one so that I can have one for each bathroom (I use grocery bags in my trash cans). So much more convenient than walking to the kitchen every time I need to change out the bag!

As soon as I can get my hands on one of the bigger containers I plan on making one for the kitchen as well to hold the majority of our bags. 

So much awesomeness in one little project. 

I'd love to hear about how yours works out for you if you decide to make one. Enjoy!

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