Jul 102013

I have long used plastic grocery sacks in our tiny bathroom trash cans, but I’ve often wished that I could get away with using them in the kitchen too, because in spite of my best intentions, I never remember to take my canvas bags to the store, so I always have gazillions of them. Also, the last time I bought 13-gallon kitchen trash bags, I was sticker-shocked by the $14 price tag. It seems silly to pay money for something to throw your trash in…so you can then put your trash in the trash? I mean really, you may as well just throw away some money (for a small fee, of course, to have the money you want to throw away picked up on trash day).


Grocery sacks don’t actually fit in tiny bathroom trash cans (they’re too big), but I refuse to purchase trash bags in assorted shapes and sizes (this is, in my mind, in the same category as buying specialty cake pans), so I make do. Grocery sacks also don’t fit in most other trash cans (they’re too small), and it’s totally gross to just throw your trash in a can with no liner, so what to do? I did a Google search, and found all kinds of solutions to hold your grocery sacks until you decide what to do with them, but nothing that would actually allow you to utilize them as trash bags. Of course, you can buy a special trash can designed for grocery sacks, for 20-something dollars, but you know I would never do that. Also, we had one of these in the RV, and the narrow design made it basically useless. It held very little. So….

Enter Facebook. Someone (Angie??) shared this photo from….somewhere. I downloaded it to my computer because I was afraid I wouldn’t be able to find it again, and I wanted to show it to my husband. Only now I cannot locate where it came from (if anyone knows, please let me know so I can give proper credit where it’s due). ***Update! The original source is The Family Handyman Facebook page . Thanks, Angie!***

I loved this idea because the grocery sack is held wide open, which would make it easy to toss in messy things like veggie peels or coffee grounds, and you can easily take advantage of all the available space in the bag. Genius!

I presented this idea to my husband, and he said, “Sure. I can make that.”

Of course he can. He can make or fix anything.

It took him about 6 weeks (of me pestering him) to get to it, but last weekend he went out to his shop, rounded up some scrap lumber (this includes the shelf that used to be above my desk when it was in the kitchen, an old cabinet door, and a door from a laminate shelving system, pieces of which are currently being used in both girls’ rooms),

and turned them into this, for FREE!

He kept the dimensions of the bag holder the same, but built a much larger storage box for extra bags (16 x 6). He also improved on the original design by using laminate-coated wood for the bottom, so it won’t scratch the wood floor, and he gave the whole thing a coat of gloss white cabinet paint (leftover from our bathroom remodeling project), so it will be easy to clean up any spills.

When the bag is full, we just tie it up, toss it in our now-liner-free, 13-gallon kitchen trash can (which is now kept in the new laundry room) and put in a new (free) bag.

I love being married to a handyman. If there is ever a project I want to try, he can always figure out a way to accomplish it. I can say, in all honesty, that I’m most attracted to his brain!