DIY: Waterproof drawstring bag out of laminated cotton fabric

With the wonderful (no sarcasm here) advent of NO PLASTIC BAGS hitting most of Los Angeles stores and spreading throughout California (and eventually the world, I hope!), I didn't realize how much I needed a plastic bag until I opened the cubby all my plastic bags used to be in and there were none there! What was I going to do for all those dirty athletic shoes I had to carry in my gym bag? or my sweaty gym clothes I peel off post-workout? or my synchronized swimming suits drenched in chlorine?! I thought it would be silly and ironic of me to go out and purchase plastic bags to solve these damp problems and on top of it all, I am a supporter of this anti-plastic bag initiative, so I need to make moves to make a change and why not make it fun in the process. I started sewing last year and have a sewing machine too (I even know how to thread it - the hardest part next to pinning). I have pretty good advanced beginning skills so I thought crafting a waterproof drawstring bag should not be that hard.

This video was extremely helpful in constructing a simple drawstring bag - remember I am just looking for a bag to store all my smelly wet items, I was not really trying to get fancy with it.

In terms of fabric, I remember being downtown and finding this 'placematty,' plasticy material and I was like ooO that would be a good Project Runway challenge but then again I was like I can use this as my waterproof fabric for my drawstring bag! So I picked up a half a yard of laminated cotton fabric (that had some bend/gathering to it, other fabrics like oilcloths are really stiff!) which ran for about $10 (yes that is about $20/yard - so not cheap! I am going to check other 'cash only' stores next time).

The only drawback to using this fabric is how difficult it is to keep down while sewing - especially when I folded the top over. It was so bad I didn't bother doing another stitch on top (to keep the string from moving) because it was such a nightmare. The plasticness of the fabric doesn't move as smoothly over the teeth on your sewing machine. The simple solution would be to press on the fold but since this is a derivative of plastic we are dealing with, it will most likely melt - you don't press your rain coat do you? I found this great article from Sew4home on tips and tricks to use when sewing with laminated cottons - will definitely use the wax paper trick or roller foot for my next bag.