joining the squares
Individual squares woven from coffee bags can be used, for example, as pan coasters, but are often used to make bags or baskets. A small basket can already be made from five squares and a medium-sized bag from 14 squares. You can use a regular plastic gift wrapping ribbon or other durable plastic cord to join the squares. The ribbon/cord should be soft enough not to damage the coffee bag material.
Polypropylene webbing strap can be used as the carrying handles of the coffee bag bags. The ends of the webbing strap can be carefully melted with a lighter, for example, so that they do not start to unravel in use. The strap is threaded either along the outside or inside of the bag and the ends of the strap are joined by sewing (either with a sewing machine or by hand with a needle and thread).
You can decide the order in which to attach the squares, but at the corner points it is a good idea to pay attention to the joining of the corners of all three squares. Here is one example of the order in which the squares of a small basket can be attached, but you can do it in even smaller sections if you feel like it. An example of the order in which to put a bag together can be found on the blog. The squares are placed side by side and the string is threaded through the hinges with a large needle. A long (short one works fine if you don´t have a long one) blunt-tipped needle is best suited for this so that the sharp tip of the needle does not pass through the coffee bag material. A Prym mattress needle has been used here, the tip of which has been sanded round with sandpaper. The gift string can also be attached by taping to a stick/knitting needle used as an aid in weaving and used like a needle to thread the ribbon.
The basket or bag is assembled by first threading the string through the hinges, after which the seams can be finished by threading the string under every other strip (strips that do not form a hinge on that edge of the square), pulling the strips over the hinges. The seams of the basket/bag can remain holey if they are joined only by the hinges, so when choosing how to join the squares, it is worth considering the future use of the bag/basket. The squares are also more resistant to hard use when the strips are attached to the adjacent squares at both ends. So in small baskets, this doesn’t matter as much. Finally, the ends of the strings are tied and threaded either into the hinges or inside the squares.
The upper edge of the coffee bag or basket is finished by threading a string or ribbon through the hinges so that the edge does not unravel in use. In these two baskets, the top edges are finished with the same gift string that connects the squares. In the basket on the left, the hinges are covered, and on the right the hinges appear at the joints of the squares. In the basket on the left, the squares are woven from a combination of Juhla Mokka and Presidentti coffee bags, which have also been cut to different widths to create a unique pattern.