Your Old Soda Bottle Is The Key To Organized Plastic Bag Storage. Here's How

Whenever you finish a bottle of soda, you'll probably want to throw it away. However, if you have a mountain of plastic bags piling up in a cupboard or on your sides, then utilizing a leftover soda bottle to organize and fix your mess could be precisely what you need. Rather than tossing it, you can craft a plastic bag dispenser with it, making it quick and easy to grab whenever you need while keeping them all in one place. It could even help you to maximize space in a small kitchen. Likewise, there are also benefits from upcycling.

First, re-using an old one will mean you save money compared to purchasing a professional product. Secondly, upcycling is much better for the planet, as you'll be reducing the amount of plastic waste you throw out. With around 36 million metric tons of plastic flooding out of the U.S. in 2018 alone, per the EPA, it's easy to see why upcycling is a much better option. So, if you have a bunch of spare, empty soda bottles lying around, then this will be the perfect opportunity to use them.

Find an old large soda bottle

To complete this hack, you'll only need a few items: some scissors or a knife, a large old soda bottle, a hook, and tape — that's it. First, empty your soda bottle and rinse it clean with some soap and water before allowing it to dry. Next, you can grab your knife or scissors and slice off the top section at the nape to create an opening, but not so big that your bags all tumble out or pull out too easily. This is the part which will act as the "dispenser." To create your opening to insert the bags, you'll want to flip it and slice off a small portion of the bottom section, the part of which will face upward.

Now, all you need to do is secure it in place, with the top where you'd drink from facing down, whether underneath a shelf, inside a cabinet door (if it fits), or a wall — the choice is all yours. You can do this using a hook from Home Depot for $3.93 and drill it on your wall. To hang the bottle on there, you'll have to insert a small hook-sized slit and slip it on. For the final steps, simply create a pile of your plastic bags and stuff them in there, pulling the bottom one out slightly. Now, you should be able to grab one whenever you need it at the snap of a finger.

Ways to customize your dispenser

While this dispenser does a fantastic job, there are some ways you can customize it to add some extra functionality. First, you have the option to add mini hooks to the outside if you have it on your wall to add extra storage for items like keys and keyrings or anything else you may need to hang up, providing it's not too heavy. In addition, instead of making just one, craft several and create a system for different-sized bags to match with smaller bottles. On each one, you can add labels so you know what types are where; for example, one for shopping and another for doggy bags. However, you could always just stick to labeling your original dispenser.

One caveat to remember with this hack is that when you're using it, just remember to pull gently on the bags rather than too hard. Otherwise, you may end up pulling all of them out. Likewise, the aesthetic may not be to everyone's taste, in which case, cover it with some material for a prettier look or lock it away in a laundry or utility room. If you want to wrap it in a material, then you could opt for something colorful, such as these patterns, for $12 off Etsy. Simply measure, snip what you need off, and glue it on. Overall, this must-try plastic bag hack should cost you no more than $12, and if you keep it simple, completely free!