Farm-inspired homemade holiday gifts

Ross County Farm Bureau member Ivory Harlow of Dickie Bird Farm said she started upcycling empty feed bags to make reusable shopping bags and other items out of necessity. Harlow had collected piles of the empty bags because the country scenes were too cute to throw away, so she needed to find a new use for them. According to Harlow, the bags make great stocking stuffers, unique gift bags and wonderful hostess gifts around the holidays (just insert a bottle of wine).

In addition to reusable shopping bags, Harlow creates coasters, placemats, coin purses and other projects out of feed bags. Complete instructions for making reusable shopping bags are below, and additional feed bag creations can be found on the Dickie Bird Farm Facebook page.

Upcycled feed bags


1 feed bag
2 yards belt material for straps
Marker, ruler, scissors, sewing machine


  1. Lay the feed bag flat. Cut 4 inches off the bottom.

2. Turn bag inside out. Stitch bottom seam shut (see image below).







3. To create square bottom, fold bag lengthwise at center (like you’re pressing a front seam in wranglers). Fold corners (see image below).3






4. Mark corners 3 inches up. Stitch shut (see image below).






5. Turn bag right side out (see image below).






6. Fold top over to desired height. Stitch.

7. Mark bag 4 inches in from each corner to station straps.

8. Cut 2 (3 ft) lengths of belt material.

9. Carefully apply heat (match or lighter) to each end of belt material to prevent unraveling.

10. Sew straps onto bag with a heavy duty stitch.

11. Your bag is ready to use!



About Ivory Harlow

Harlow moved to Ohio after serving in the military and began farming in 2012. Dickie Bird Farm is a small, family-owned farm in Chillicothe, Ohio. The farm raises meat goats (Boer) and operates a forage enterprise. Dickie Bird Farm practices holistic farm management, sustainability and natural production methods.

Do you have a unique homemade holiday gift idea? Send it with an image to [email protected] or share it on the Our Ohio Facebook page.