From bags to riches
Monday afternoon, Callahan shared the skills and knowledge she has picked up over the past 19 years with 11 women at the Lebanon Senior Center. Four card tables held examples of the more than 40 items for which she has designed patterns at first in her head and now compiled into a book.
The tools of her trade are minimal sharp scissors, a variety of plastic bags and crochet needles.
“There are definitely some no nos,” Callahan said, offering samples of the types of bags that don’t work well. “Some are too noisy, they’re scratchy, listen. Garbage bags are usually too thin and stretchy.”
Although many grocery bags are white or clear, Callahan showed off samples of colors including yellow,
teal, black, burgundy, gray and tan. Boutiques often provide the snazziest bags in the widest variety of colors, she said.
Callahan showed off a smartphone cover she made from produce bags from a local grocery store.
“The little spritzes of color are from the store’s logo,” Callahan said.
Callahan crafted her own large reusable grocery bags and she is often asked where they came from.
In Monday’s class, Callahan passed out a variety of colored bags to each of the women and taught them how to fold the bags to cut them into strips about a half inch wide. She said most bags produce about 18 to 21 strips, eight of which are then hooked together like rubber bands to form longer strands. Tying a slip knot into one end provides a notch for a crochet hook to grab.
Although 83 year old Pat Barth of Lebanon has been crocheting for more than 70 years,
she was having a hard time on Monday getting the hang of hooking the bags together.