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Reusable waxed canvas lunch sack

I’ve been enjoying a bit of a joint crafty project with my sister, Leigh over the last couple of weeks and it’s finally finished so we can share it with you guys.

You know I have a million lunch boxes, we’ve discussed this little issue of mine, but sometimes even with my drawer full of lunch boxes, I need something different. Usually, it’s because I have lots of little things and they end up all over my bag and let’s be honest there is nothing worse than brusied apples and mashed banana at the bottom of your rucksack at 1pm in a warm office, am I right?

So when I saw a waxed canvas lunch sack on pinterest I thought – Yep I need one of those. I won’t lie, part of it was how cute and fabby and very Americana it was (for our American readers, the whole brown paper lunch bag thing doesn’t happen here, to us it’s VERY American). Now that’s fine, but these things were selling for about £30 each, for a lunch sack??? So I emailed my sister Leigh who can sew (and has no idea how I worship the ground she walks on for this skill) and asked if she could knock me up a lunch sack.

She was a bit hesitant about the whole waxing thing, so we split the project, Leigh made the bags and I waxed them.

So… wanna see how Leigh made the bags? Pop over to her blog


and hear her story. Go on, you can come back and read about how to wax them when you are done.

How to wax your canvas bag to make it water resistant / stain resistant/mashed banana resistant

If you have a quick search online there are a million blogs and video of how to do this, so don’t worry. However I will save you all that searching and say, it’s so simple. You just need a wee bit of patience.

So, I had a look at the wax options and most folk were choosing to melt a mix of parafin wax and bees wax and paint this on. It gives you a nice thick coat which makes the bags nice and stiff.

I wasn’t sure about adding this much of a coat all at once so opted to go with thinner layers to build it up to the thickness I wanted. It turned out, once layer was all I needed.

I also bought room temperature soft wax (meant for re-waxing jackets) and rubbed that into the sacks with a cloth.

Reducing the need to boil wax. It was really simple to do but you need to make sure you:

  • work it in well
  • really make sure you get right into the seams
  • and make sure you don’t forget places, like underneath folds.

Once you are certain you have covered every inch of the outside of the bag, you need to make sure the wax gets into all the gaps in the weave of the fabric. This is what makes it water/leaky container resistant. To do this, tie it up in an old pillow case and chuck it in your dryer for 45 minutes.

Yup in the dryer. The reason you tie it up in a pillow case is to protect your dryer as you are doing this to melt that wax and really let it soak in.

Now I decided one coat was enough for me, but if you aren’t happy after you’ve given it the drier treatment, you could do another coat but once you are happy, let it sit in a cool room over night to settle and you have yourself one water resistant lunch bag.

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