How can I reuse or recycle … plastic magazine baggies?

Magazine baggieConnie Deakins submitted this comment on the used envelopes post but I thought I’d bring it here to highlight it:

How can I recycle the plastic envelopes that the Radio Times is sent in, and other publications? I have heard there is a place that recycles these but cannot locate it.

I assume she means the plastic bags which are used to send magazines – or similarly sized thin catalogues – through the post. I’ve got one in front of me now which says “this plastic wrapping will degrade harmlessly under the right conditions with 12-18 months” but it doesn’t say what those right conditions are. And also “degrade” isn’t exactly the best thing, unless it’s compostable degrading as happens with corn-based “plastics”.

So any thoughts or suggestions?

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12 Responses to “How can I reuse or recycle … plastic magazine baggies?”

  1. Karlie says:

    You can use the plastic like you would to make a rag rug. Just cut the strips and crochet, weave, knit, braid etc. This page has a Q&A on “bread bag” rugs about 1/3 of the way down.

  2. Andy says:

    I use the larger clear sections as wrapping for my hand made greetings cards

  3. If they’re patterned I use them for storage. If they’re clear, as in the wrapping that some magazines come in on the newspaper stands these days, I use them mostly to protect books from the weather when I’m leaving them outdoors for Bookcrossing (

  4. It’s not just rugs you can make with plastic bags, you can make ‘plastic fabric’. If you strip up these smaller bags, they are perfect for weaving through fruit nets. The variations of colour and pattern are endless. Then you just need to get creative with the ‘fabric’. I made an urchin for my reef, highlighting the great Pacific Garbage Patch.

    you can also crochet the strips into mad shapes – an excellent AND FREE project to get kids thinking about creative re-use.

    Have fun!

  5. Liz says:

    How about sending them to this company who can recycle them?

  6. Adge says:

    Rightly or wrongly I take them along with old carrier bags to Tesco for recycling!

  7. Elouise says:

    I use clear magazine bags to protect recipes when I am cooking in the kitchen. I put them in front of the recipes/cookbooks. You can read through them, as they are transparent, but if you splash any ingredients, your recipe book will not be dirtied.

  8. VP says:

    If your local supermarket has a plastic bag recycle point, you can put them in there

  9. Anonymous says:

    boil,and put in a mould to make those crazy things you can think of, like an animal shaped mould,trophy etc. mix colours using the readily available dyes and voir la!

  10. Estelle says:

    I subscribe to the Guardian Weekly, which comes in a clear bag. I use the clear bags to cover books that I carry with me and read often, particularly those which are a bit tatty and will be damaged in my handbag. The plastic bag, sliced open on on side, is the perfect size for covering a book of about A5 size. It is also useful for covering travel books, which tend to get heavily used and the covers get battered. I also like to recover old, second-hand books.

  11. One of my next projects is going to be ironing plastic and making fabric. I think that it would work with these as well.

    Also if you cut them open you could use them to make plarn.

    Check out my plarn bag.

    I will post my fused plastic creations when completed.

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