Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Folding plastic shopping bags - space saving hint

When I read a hint about folding the plastic bags from local stores, I had no idea how much it would help me while packing. What has to be my least favorite part of moving seems to take up the most time. I've lost count of the number of boxes I've stuffed full and taped shut in anticipation of the upcoming move. As we get our current home ready to sell, we want to get as much packing done as possible before it's listed, hoping to make the move easier after our current house sells. 

Several months ago, I noticed a hint that has helped me control the myriad of plastic shopping bags that we bring home from grocery and big-box stores. Before allowing carelessly tossed shopping bags to take over a cabinet or closet, there IS a way to keep them in a more manageable state. 



From a pile of bags stuffed inside each other (above) 
to a container of bags that take up much less space (below)

STEP 1: (below) 
Lay bag flat
 STEP 2:
Bring bottom of bag up to top, pressing air out as you fold
 STEP 3:
Fold 1/3 of the side over, keeping the bag as flat as possible 
 STEP 4: 
Bring the other 1/3 over
 STEP 5: 
Starting at the bottom, bring the bottom part over in a triangle shape
 STEP 6: 
Make a second triangle fold
 STEP 7: 
Make a third triangle fold
 STEP 8: 
The handles should be the only part left outside the folds
 STEP 9: 
Tuck the handles into the center of the folds, creating a tight triangle
The folded bag  takes less space than an unfolded bag

I had tossed these folded triangles of plastic into a large bowl sitting on a pantry shelf. One day, as I was searching for something to pad the corner of a box, I realized the nearby bags would be great padding. And bonus......they can be rescued after the move and recycled at a local store. Plus, if you live in a city/state where the bags are free, you might even save a little money on packing paper. 

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