The idea of recycling empty feed sacks as crafts and household items has been around since the early 1800s. Feed sacks are still a viable source of inexpensive and durable material, although the material has changed. Many things that were once packaged in cloth bags are now being placed in heavy duty paper or plastic. But cotton and burlap sacks are still in use. Burlap is mainly used to hold potatoes, cotton and corn, while cotton bags are used for flour, beans and rice.
Manufacturers begin to realize that they could make their feed sacks out of attractive material with the hopes that they would sell more to the farmer whose wife wanted the pretty fabric to create a dress. Feed sacks can still be used to create clothing items. Use vintage or modern feed sack material to create blouses, dresses, aprons and men's shirts. Use a standard clothing pattern to create the clothing item using feed sack material. Cotton feed sacks are best for clothing projects, but burlap sacks can be used to create a particularly rustic look. Several sacks can be stitched together to make a large garment.
Totes and Bags
Create reusable shopping bags or travel totes. Cut and sew feed sacks into a sack and use a pretty ribbon as a handle. The sacks can be used to take groceries home from the grocery store or as a purse or travel tote to carry personal objects. Making totes and bags out of feed sacks is good for the environment because not only are you repurposing the feed sack, but by creating a bag or tote of it, you are not using environmentally harmful plastic sacks from the grocery store.
Home Decor Items
For a rustic look, use burlap to upholster furniture or as a wall hanging. For a wall hanging, use a rectangle piece of burlap and draw a simple shape with a piece of chalk, such as a car or flower. Use some colorful yarn and a needle with a large eye and sew yarn along the chalk line. You can also cut out a child's name from feed sack material. Mount the name on a piece of plywood or foam board and surround it with a picture frame.
Other Feed Sack Project Ideas
Feed sacks can be used to create trendy looking gift wrap. Use paper or fabric feed sacks to create natural looking gift wrap. Embellish wrapped packages with natural items such as dried flowers and satin ribbons. You can also use feed sacks to create small doll items such as doll clothes and rugs. Feed sacks also make good kitchen towels.
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