If you’ve popped into the Otago Farmers Market recently, you may have spotted a new addition. They have a brand new market kitchen and site office!
Beside all this bright shiny goodness, you’ll see the market cup library, to help the on-site vendors reduce the phenomenal number of disposable cups they give out each market, and our awesome bag library!
One-month on from the launch of the library, the bags are going (and coming back) well! We’ve had fantastic response from stall holders, who now don’t have to struggle to independently source shopping bags that match their ethos, or miss out when people come to them late in their shop with already-full bags.
Shoppers too love the practicality of our bags, with the size, strap length and strength being ‘just right’. Plus, they don't need to add to their already sizable stash of bags, they can use them when they need them and bring them back!
If you find yourself needing one, please take photos of your bags adventures and share them on our facebook or instagram pages!
About a month ago I received a call from one of the staff at Alsco linen service, asking if could possibly help them avoid throwing 400 bedspreads into a skip.
Hospital staff, patients and visitors at Dunedin hospital in the mid 1990’s - 2000’s may remember these pastel abstract geometric design bedspreads. They were replaced some years ago, and have since been sitting in a store room at the linen service, lost and forgotten. Time had come for these to be cleared, and the only option they could see was to hire a skip and add to the 9% of Dunedin landfill taken up by textiles.
Thankfully, another option was sought and the staff member took the time to contact us.
At first I was very nervous about how much space 400 bedspreads would take up while we slowly converted them into bags, not to mention how to get them to the studio in the first place (my small car might be tardis-like, but that would have pushed the limits). My parents came to the rescue, and with their trusty trailer we were able to collect and re-home the bedspreads.
Each bedspread, once the hems have been unpicked, neatly divides into 6 bags, and co-ordinates with a fantastic range of the coloured pockets we have, made from old sheets, remnants and off-cuts. Once we’ve made a potential 1,600 bags from them, the excitement might have dimmed a little, but we shall see!
P.S. if anyone has another use for these, please sing out, as we would love to share this resource! The sturdy twill weave cotton/polyester blend would make great oven-mitts, aprons, childrens jeans/overalls, play matts, laundry bags...endless possibilities!
Bags For Good bag library now open at the Otago Farmers Market!
Thanks to support from all our busy volunteers, and the Farmers Market, we now have a permanent bag library operating at the weekend market every Saturday.
These bags are for all market-goers who have forgotten their bag, or who have ended up purchasing extras that they cannot fit in the bags they brought with them (been there many times!). Now, rather than missing out or having to purchase an extra bag for the occasion, you can just pick one up from beside the site office, take your purchases home, and bring it back next week (along with your own bags for that week's shop!).
Feel free to post photos of using these bags to our facebook or instagram pages, or to the Farmers Market pages. You can also let the Farmers' Market know how handy you find this service to encourage them to keep the stand well stocked!
See the article in the Star
Bags for Good co-ordinator, Fiona Jenkin, recording bag adventures on the mission to reduce textile waste, reduce plastic, and build friendships.