Today I'm excited to share how to make my Ultimate Reusable Snack Bags. They have a design that works great for adults and kids, AND are made from fabric tested & deemed food safe.
Not only are they great for dry snacks like crackers, cookies and cereal:
They're also ideal for things like fruits & veggies:
The ribbon loop drawstring design makes it easy to open wide and shut nice & tight, so filling them is easy and little hands can grab their snacks without making a mess:
The looped drawstring won't ever slip out and makes them easy to carry or hang on things like strollers. And to clean them, just wipe out or pop them in the washing machine.
There are a lot of snack bag tutorials out there and many use a variety of materials to make them reusable, but I've discovered the ideal fabric to make them washable, waterproof and mostly importantly, confirmed food safe. What's this magic material? Eco-PUL™.
Eco-PUL™ is polyester knit fabric that's been coated on one side with a thin layer of thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU). It makes the fabric both waterproof and breathable. Traditionally PUL used for making cloth diapers & training pants, but can also be used to make bed pads, waterproof pet items and for lining bags.
What makes Eco-PUL™ different is that it's made with a "green" adhesive that is solvent-free and environmentally friendly. It's been tested and found free from lead, phthalates, and BPA, so it is safe to come into contact with food. It's the only waterproof fabric I've come across that has that distinction. It's even anti-microbial. And it can be machine washed in hot water (heck, it can even be auto-claved!), so I feel very safe letting my kids, or anyone else's, eat out of these handmade bags.
- Fat quarter Cotton fabric for outer
- Fat quarter Eco-PUL™ knit fabric for lining
- 2/3 yd of grosgrain ribbon (1 inch wide or narrower)
- Sewing Notions: ball point needle, rotary cutter/shears, pins, disappearing marker, iron, lighter or fray-check, hand sewing needle
Start by cutting a 6 inch diameter circle and a rectangle that is 8 inches high by 18 3/8 inches long from both the Eco-PUL™ and the outer fabric. I know a lot of people will ask about the Space Ghosts print I used. It's now retired from the manufacturer (being so cool, I can't imagine why), but it's still available here.
Take the PUL and fold widthwise with the coated side facing in and stitch along the side with a 1/4 inch seam allowance using ball point needle:
With coated sides facing, pin together the circle and the newly made cylinder. Carefully to pin close to the edge (so no pinholes will be outside the seam allowance).
Stitch together with a 1/4 inch seam allowance, going slowly to prevent any slippage or puckering.
Clip into the seam allowance, careful not to cut into stitching. This will add a little give to the curve. Set lining aside.
Now take the outer fabric and fold, but make markings 1 & 2 inches from top and 4 & 6 inches from top. Leave the gaps between them unstitched to create the drawstring casing opening and a gap for turning when outer & lining are sewn together later.
Press the seam open:
Stitch around the casing opening to hold the pressed edges open and create a nice finish:
With right sides of both cylinders facing, pin together close to the top edge, lining up the seams. Stitch together all the way around with another 1/4 inch seam allowance.
Find gap opening and turn fabrics right side out:
It should look like this when fully turned:
Push lining into outer of sack:
Top stitch around top edge and again about 1 3/4 inches inward to create the drawstring casing:
Cut a strip of grosgrain ribbon about 23 inches long and heat seal the edges with a lighter. Using a safety pin or bodkin, insert it into the casing and snake it all the way around. Overlap the edges and stitch together.
The ribbon is now a loop, so pull around so that the stitched together ends are hidden inside the sack. Hand sew the outside gap closed with a slipstitch. Spritz with water and dry on hot in the dryer to seal up the stitching holes (this makes the seams more watertight). Now it's time to fill them with snacks!
I've also used this fabric to make an even simpler version of my popular Super Simple Sandwich Bag tutorial. Instead of cutting a separate outer & liner, all that's needed is a single cut of the Eco-PUL™ and some FOE (fold over elastic) for the binding.
Plus, an extra scrap of PUL to help reinforce the snaps:
And now there's a handy, durable, completely food safe sandwich bag with just a single piece for fabric:
For more ideas of ways to use PUL, check out my PUL Projects Pinterest Board:
I'm also sharing this project with my FAVE LINK PARTIES.
Click HERE to check them out!
I was not financially compensated for this post and purchased all items shown myself. The opinions are completely my own, based on my experience. I thought this material was worth sharing with other sewing enthusiasts.