Did you know that the UK sends around 350,000 tonnes of textile waste to landfills each year! An estimated £140 million worth! 

Bringing your own reusable bags when shopping reduces plastic waste. But cheap reusable bags are often not sustainably produced and more ethical options cost money. Not all reusable bags are washable and will end up in the bin all the same.

By using something that already exists (like a scarf or a t-shirt) to meet your needs (a shopping bag), instead of creating new material from raw resources for this purpose, you:

  • help keep shopping sustainable
  • reduce our demands on natural resources
  • keep clothing waste out of the landfill

Remember the Three R’s: Reduce – Reuse – Recycle

When your bag gets worn out, you can even recycle it to a fiber recycling facility!

Here Sunny Jar Eco Hub share how to make a Furoshiki bag out of a scarf and a shopping from a T-shirt.  We hope you enjoy making them.


How to Make a Furoshiki Bag from a Scarf

Follow this video (from a recent workshop) to see instructions on how to use the traditional Japanese method of furoshiki to make a knot bag out of a scarf.

How to Make a Shopping Bag from a T-Shirt (no sewing required!)

T-shirt bags are strong and durable and can frequently be washed. They are light so you can carry a few of them to put all your shopping in. And the great thing about these bags is that making them help reduce waste!

Old T-shirts make up a significant amount of that waste! Fight back by using your old T-shirts and giving them a new purpose once you are done wearing them.

The UK sends around 350,000 tonnes of textile waste to landfills each year! An estimated £140 million worth 


Follow these  instructions, to make a shopping bag out of scarf.  This bag has handles and is strong enough to carry shopping.



(1) Lay your t-shirt flat. Cut off the sleeves and the neckline.

T-shirt bag

(2) Cut a fringe along the bottom- mark where you want the bottom of your bag to be and cut slits up to this line. Turn your t-shirt inside out.

T-shirt bag

(3) Tie knots at the bottom of the bag- first tie the front and back tassels together and then tie the neighbouring tassels together, so there are no gaps.

(4) Turn your t-shirt back the right way. To strengthen the straps, cut strips from the sleeves and tie a strip around each of the handles. You’re done!


Tasselled on the bottom: Don’t turn your t-shirt inside out before you tie the knots, leave it the right way round. 

Shoulder bag (from large t-shirt): Make a bigger hole at the neckline and tie the handles together.


Sunny jar eco hub

Thank you to our Just FACT partner, Sunny Jar Eco Hub for sharing this eco-friendly shopping bag idea.

Sunny Jar Eco Hub is a not-for-profit social enterprise, based in Tower Hamlets, on a mission to reduce people’s waste! Follow them on Instagram and Facebook to find out more about events and upcoming workshops. 

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