Thursday, January 26, 2012

Ditty Bags

Yesterday I was involved in a project that I felt very good about. A friend who is a DAR member invited me to participate with her and others in a service project that would benefit our local VA Hospital - the making of ditty bags. Strange name for a bag, but who am I to question it?

Every patient at the hospital - both those who are recovering there and those who come for appointments - is given a ditty bag that contains certain personal hygiene products (I don't know exactly what those are). The size of the bag is strictly 9" wide by 13" tall. We were given a direction sheet to follow.

We cut long 10" swaths of fabrics, then we cut those down into 33" segments. We folded at the bottom, sewed up 13" on each side. Then we were left with turning down a casing-style top. We did not have to insert a drawstring; we just made the bags.

The morning went pretty fast, and we established a bit of an assembly line of duties. We had stations for cutting, pinning, stitching, and pressing. The beauty of the endeavor - besides the fact that we were performing a service to veterans - was that it's a great way to use up old, out-dated fabric. I know I have a box or two of fabrics that are ancient, but still useful. The hospital had no requirement about the color or even the type of fabric! We were using all manner of fabrics, including t-shirt knit. Previous bags have been made using double-knit - remember that stuff?? So anything goes.

At the end of the day, 50 bags were completed. I did not stay for that entire time, but several ladies did and got a lot accomplished. As I said earlier, I really felt as though it was time well spent, and I am planning to make more bags on my own.

I asked if VA Hospitals nationwide use these ditty bags, but no one knew the answer. If you were so inclined to make ditty bags for the VA in your area, I would suggest first contacting VA offices to see if bags are needed or wanted.

1 comment:

  1. We design and hands build the seabag and ditty bags for the ship crew.


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