Boomerang Bags : Making Eastbourne plastic-bag free!

July 2019

We are taking a break from regular Tuesday night sewing bees for a while. We are running some smaller home-based bees during the day though, so if you’re interested in attending any of these, or running your own, please contact Mary on or 0276647661.

We also have a bunch of kits ready if anyone is keen to do some in the privacy and comfort of their own homes. 10 bags to a kit with handles already sewn and no pockets needed. Please let me know number of kits and whether Rona House or Totara Street suits for pick up - can have ready tomorrow or over weekend.

We are close to 1400 bags - not bad!

May 2019

Back to doing roughly fortnightly sewing bees at St Ronan’s on Tuesdays. Contact us if you want to be involved.

Bags are going well. We’re almost at 1,200 bags now and are thinking of continuing until we hit 2,000 – and then calling it quits.

Hopefully by then there’ll be a regular bag return rate (it’s picking up) and people will be well into the habit of bringing their own bags to the shops – they’ll have to…!

Genevieve; Mary 027 664 7661 / 562 7554

September 2018 

Numbers? We now have 801 bags in circulation!  

Bees? Next working bee is Tuesday 4 September in St Ronan’s hall, 7-9pm. Working bees are roughly fortnightly – illness and other commitments willing.

Volunteers? More volunteers would be fab.

Problems? People remembering to bring them back to keep the crates stocked. There’re are still some people who think they can keep them… Hmmmmm!

Remembering? People are starting to remember their own cloth bags. This is happening much more in the village, which is awesome to see!

Enough? There’s a good number of our bags still in circulation but they seem to go out as soon as they come in. Lovely to see them roaming wild in the village nowadays!

Bought to Support? Yes “Bought to Support“ bags are available from the deli or direct from us (see below) at $15 each. All funds go directly back into the project.

Mary 027 664 7661 / 562 7554

Genevieve Packer & Mary Ryan

May 2018 : Boomerang Bags & their Future

We’re now at 621 Borrow and Bring Back, Boomerang Bags. We seem to have settled down now with a good ebb and flow of bags available in the crates – on average there are around 70 odd in the crates at any one time. Articles in the Dominion Post and in the Eastbourne Herald have helped explain the recycling of bags to people who might have thought they were to keep.

Lots of great conversations are starting around our plastic bag habits and a great response from the community to the initiative in general.

A hot tip for remembering to return your bag: put your wallet and keys in it – that way it’ll at least make it out the door with you!

We are taking a break from sewing bees this month as both Mary and I are away. We will be getting back into the swing of things again in June. Our next target is to make it to 1000 bags. People are welcome to come along and make their own bags from our fabric stash – with assistance if needed.

Genevieve; Mary 027 664 7661 / 562 7554

Genevieve Packer & Mary Ryan

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April 2018

As you read this the Boomerang Bag launch will have happened.  Genevieve has updated us:

We are at about 550 finished Borrow and Bring Back bags - an amazing effort from a small group of incredible women volunteers.

We also have a handful of Bought to Support bags that will be available for sale at $15 each from the Deli as well as directly through the Facebook page. All funds from the sale of  these bags goes directly back into the kitty to cover the cost of screens, ink, cutting blades, thread, signage and crates.

We are looking forward to launching and taking a break from weekly sewing bees. We hope the community gets behind the idea of the bags, and borrow, and BRING BACK! We hope it helps raise awareness and acts as a reminder for people to bring their own cloth bags. We would love to become obsolete!

Participating retailers: Four Square, Marmalade Deli, Fruit and Vege, Library, Eastbourne Meat, Ponders, Eastbourne Pharmacy. There will be crates in the Four Square Foyer, at the Fruit and Vege and between the pharmacy and butcher. The other retailers will have a small stash in their shops.

Thanks to the Menzshed for making the awesome crates and the Eastbourne Lions and Tommy’s for some financial support. And of course St Ronan’s for the hall usage!

March 2018

Progress: We’ve now finished 407 Boomerang Bags. It’s not so far to go now to make it up to 500!

Weekly sewing bees continue on Wednesday nights 7-9pm – all welcome. BYO machine if you’re a sewer or just come along for non-sewing tasks. Heaps of ironing, pinning, cutting and more ironing.

Launch: We’re looking at launching towards the end of March. We’ve got retail signage and displays underway.

Bought to support: Now for something slightly different. In the next few weeks, we will begin selling Bought to Support bags (see blue logo, right). These beautiful Bought to Support bags will allow people to have their very own, locally-made special Boomerang Bag, while also supporting the Boomerang Bag concept by helping cover some of the costs.

Save a sea creature: Save a dolphin (1 plastic bag), save an albatross or two (bits of plastic bags), save a million krill (the tiny plastic fragments remaining after 1 plastic bag has disintegrated).

Mary 027 664 7661 / 562 554 
Genevieve Packer & Mary Ryan

Update for February 2018

We are currently at 300 ‘boomerang bags’ with at least another 50 on the go. Weekly sewing bees on Wednesday nights 7-9pm – all welcome. BYO machine if you’re a sewer or just come along for non-sewing tasks. Heaps of ironing, pinning, cutting and more ironing. This is for anyone – old or young, lads or lassies.

We’re aiming for a launch sometime late February / early March – when we’ve hit 500 bags.

Once out there, bag numbers will have to be maintained, repairs made etc, so our Wednesday-night sessions will be ongoing for the foreseeable future.

November 2017 

Let’s make Eastbourne plastic-bag free!
How: Boomerang Bags are a sustainable alternative to plastic bags. Retailers will hold a supply of free Boomerang Bags. If you forget to bring your own reusable bag, just grab a Boomerang Bag and return it next time. Easy and plastic-free!

Wanted: Fabric and thread donations. Please drop these off at the library or at St Ronan’s (box in the hall).

Working bees at St Ronan’s: 

Come along and meet your community, have a laugh and contribute to an awesome cause. We hope you enjoy seeing your fabric turned into bags - there are some beauties! Come with a sewing machine if you can. There are also plenty of non-sewing jobs (ironing, pinning, cutting and more ironing). And we welcome any refreshment contributions - baking, sweet/savoury treats, wine etc…

Wed 22 November 7-9pm       Sun 26 November 2-4pm       

Sun 3 December 2-4pm          Wed 6 December 7-9pm        Wed 20 December 7-9pm     

Sun 14 January 2-4pm            Wed 17 January 7-9pm          Sun 21 January 2-4pm            Wed 31 January 7-9pm

Wed 7 February 7-9pm

Can’t make it to a bee? We have take-home bag kits available for collection (cut bags, straps, printed pockets and instructions). We aim to launch in Feb/March  with 500 bags. We already have several hundred on the go, so we’ll make this target OK.

More information:
Mary 027 664 7661; 562 7554 
Genevieve Packer & Mary Ryan