Photo by Salt Water New England

Thursday, December 12, 2019

Cleaning out the Closet: What to Do with the Old Bags?

Photo by Salt Water New England
Early post-holiday cleaning has surfaced a familiar quandary:  what to do with the old bags of Christmases past?


28 comments:

  1. Give them to a local charity that provides clothing or food assistance - they are always looking for bags for their recipients.

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  2. OMG! I thought I was the only one who struggled with this. I have become a bag lady! And not just Christmas bags. It's just that some are so pretty. Had not thought of giving them to a local charity. Thanks for that idea. (But I'm still keeping some . . . . )

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  3. New luggage for the homeless. Seriously. Our church collected plastic grocery bags for that very purpose, and they were appreciated. Everything is relative. We so often toss things that someone else would find very useful.

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  4. I take Bean Boat and Totes when I shop.

    David J Cooper

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  5. I reuse similar for lunches and small grocery store runs.

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  6. Depending on their provenance, there may be some money to be made selling the bags on the secondhand market.

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    1. One doesn't sell anything on the secondhand market. Period.

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    2. This one does! We have a local Facebook garage sale and I get rid of items that our local school thrift shop can't take. Keeps them out of the landfill and gets them into the hands of someone who needs them. Assigning a nominal price to them assures that they'll be bought. Win-win!

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  7. Anonymous at 7:39 p.m. has the right idea. Of course, if you are the sort of person who wants to advertise to the world that you just purchased something at ___[fill in the blank of a high-end store]___, that might not work for you. But of course there are no such people on SWNE, right?

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  8. They're good for corralling little things. Envelopes, packets, and little bags of pasta in the pantry. Candy stash. Temporary holding of stray items until they find their homes. Neat and tidy way of storing anything that isn't naturally square or doesn't stand on its own. I've even used them to create temporary drawer dividers.

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  9. The bags appear to be paper but I worked at the local food pantry this week with someone who told me about how she shops with her own cloth bags and that bit came almost every time we filled an order. On that cold rainy day, I kept thinking as we gave the bags of food to the clients about the advice in The Graduate - plastics. Some were using bags for rain hats and some as rain boots and we were delivering food in plastic. Repurpose when you can, recycle when you can’t.

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  10. (Holding my head in my hands) "We" have a similar issue here even though my professor wife normally has a marked penchant for recycling paper, glass, plastic, and cans. We still seem to be swimming in gift bags. They certainly tumble from the basement closet where we keep birthday and Christmas wrapping supplies each time we are foolish enough to open that particular literal and metaphoric door. Kidding aside, I'd suggest recycling them forthwith before they breed with even greater vehemence.

    Best Regards,

    Heinz-Ulrich

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  11. I use mine to hold recyclables.

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    Replies
    1. we also recycle and use them to hold paper and cut-down cardboard recycling.

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  12. Now, there is an idea! I'll suggest it to my wife.

    Best Regards,

    Heinz-Ulrich

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  13. I don't even know if we have any shopping bags from retail shops anymore. I carry a foldable nylon tote. We have some from the grocery store, since someone in my family doesn't always remember his grocery bags......

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  14. Reading the title, first thought was "when they have finished, give them some tea."

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  15. Put them in the best Assisted Living Home you and your wife can afford.

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  16. We just gave away a number of "gift Bags" to the American Friends Service Committee's rummage sale. I use Bean boat and tote bags for shopping. My wife still gets plastic store bags which we use for dog poop bags when we pet sit and for non-recyclable trash. All put to good use.

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    1. Definitely love those Bean totes for shopping. Sometimes I forget them in the car and just pile everything in the buggy then distribute into totes when I get to car. Avoid those plastic bags.

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  17. It's not a bad idea to say, "Thanks anyway." to stores that want you to walk around town (or where/whenever you sport their bag) preforming free advertising for them. There is today, an infatuation with logos, a need to tell the world where we shop because we can afford to do so. I remember the first time I saw a company name printed on a tiny tag attached to the outside of my favorite penny loafers. I bought the loafers but removed the label when I got home (with a razor blade) thinking that if the company wanted me to display their label (or logo) they could pay me. Ahhh well, that was back in the day...when we didn't brag about our purchases or the ability to make them.
    Suzanne in Boulder

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  18. Recycle. Recycle. Recycle.

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    Replies
    1. Much better to reuse or repurpose.

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  19. Cut off the front of the bag....name of company...place on mat and frame them.
    Put in your office and remember next year which ones were a success (gift wise) and which ones were a failure. More importantly, how much joy you brought to the respective recipients !

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  20. I reuse mine for stuff going to Goodwill, I keep one open in a closet and it's easy to deposit items. I use canvas tote bags for groceries etc, but I don't carry those into department or specialty stores.

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    1. I do the exact same! Plus, if the bag is bright or pretty, it’s cheerful sitting in the closet while it collects the Goodwill items!

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  21. I had to check the comments on this one out of pure intrigue. I knew there would be some interesting answers. I would donate them to farmer's market, library, Goodwill or thrift shop.If they are sturdy and still in good condition, take them back to the shop they came from.......provided they are still in business.

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