Upcycling IKEA Bags Ideas
I see people using old IKEA bags at the laundromat and grocery store all the time. They’re capacious, tough as nails, lightweight, easily folded flat, inexpensive at a buck, and easy to carry because of their sturdy woven handles. “Frakta” means “to carry,” and since 1996, the iconic blue polypropylene Frakta bag has been doing an amazing job of carrying things for millions of shoppers.
But what other uses can we put them to?
Ever since luxury fashion house Balenciaga created a $2,145 Italian leather version of the bag, do-it-yourselfers have flooded the internet with Frakta hacks. And as you probably know, our zero waste family LOVE us our DIY and upcycling! Upcycling means that you take something no longer in use and giving it a second life and new function. A matter of fact that the finished product often becomes more practical, valuable and beautiful than what it previously was. Upcycling has become increasingly popular in the world of sustainability, and for good reason because this process means less material make its way to landfills and fewer natural resources are being used.
Let’s start with the obvious uses, some of which you may be implementing already:
Laundry Hamper: Keep three in your closet – one for whites, one for darks, and one for “To Be Donated.” When they’re empty, they can double as kitty forts.
Recycling Center: Keep several lined up in the garage for paper, glass, plastic and aluminum recycling. The handles make them so easy to tote to the recycling center or recycling bins! They’re also the perfect size and toughness for toting firewood.
Frakta Means “To Carry”: Of course, people repurpose the bags into, well, other types of bags, such as fanny packs, backpacks, messenger/computer bags, or wallets. They also make great tarpaulins – you can even incorporate a built-in carrying bag for it, which can double as a gear bag!
Clothing & Accessories: For the truly ambitious, there’s no end to the creative items people have made with IKEA bags: dog coats, dresses, corsets, utility vests, hats; and, for the Nipponophiles, there are even Japanese clogs and a stylish face mask / ponytail holder!
Gardening: Not only are the bags great for toting potted plants home between the nursery, your car and your garden, but once there, why not use them for gardening containers?
Kid Stuff: My absolute favorite category here — the adorable articles you can make for your little ones, like a painter’s smock, a wee raincoat, a kiddie pool, a mini ball pit; or just keep it simple with a baby hammock!
Using materials that otherwise would be wasted and end up in a landfill is a great idea and many companies are now using creative ways to use recycled materials in their products and here is a post about companies that make upcyled products.
And here is a guest post about fashion brands using upcycled materials as well.
How about starting to upcyle yourself by making crayons from well old crayons!