I Finally Figured Out What to Do with the 400 Canvas Tote Bags in My Closet
At this point I consider myself a professional when it comes to adding Marie Kondo to my wardrobe, my papers and even my Christmas decorations. But I recently came across a tricky item that I wasn't sure how to organize and dispose of: canvas bags.
It seems like every store has slowly replaced traditional shopping bags with these reusable alternatives, and almost every event I've attended through work in the past two years has left me with another simple bag. All in all, I counted 28 canvas tote bags packed in a mega shopping bag hanging on my front door (you know, so I could easily grab some on the way to the grocery store).
On the advice of the always wise Kondo, I realized that realistically no one needs more than four out of five of these carryalls, and set about determining which I would keep and which I would throw. That was not a problem at all. The problem was figuring out what to do with the 23 bags I had refused.
Although most reusable bags you pick up in stores are made from recyclable materials, they themselves are not recyclable. Charities that recycle pieces of cloth (such as sheets, t-shirts and the like) would not take them. No one on Poshmark wanted my used bag from a press event last August.
Then I found ChicoBag, a California-based charity that works to reduce the number of plastic bags that go to landfill sites by recycling the material to make new, durable, reusable bags. In addition, all of your reusable bags (canvas, plastic and whatever else you have) are needed to pass them on to fixed and low income families who are ready to start a reusable bag habit or to add new, useful products to them recycle partnerships with artists, artisans and nonprofits. Basically, it gives your new Kondo bags a second chance in life.
All you have to do is put your bags in a box, put a label with the address of the company (C / O Zero Waste program from ChicoBag, 747 Fortress Street, Chico, CA 95973) and off you go. (Note that you have to pay for shipping.)
Boo-bye, clutter. Hello, doorknob.
RELATED: 6 stores where you can donate old clothes for a sweet reward
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