Getting Crafty with Burlap
Reiko Piekarski, Director of Coffee Programs | Fortuna Enterprises, LLC
The cool fall air is not the only thing nipping at your nose. The jingly jangle of the holiday cheer will soon be upon us. For some, hitting the Black Friday sales is one of the most anticipated events of the year. But perhaps you are a craftier individual, looking to curate something special for your gift giving. If you are on the hunt for a gift for a budding barista or coffee enthusiast, look to these handmade inspirations to perk them up this holiday season.
Oh, the many ways to use coffee burlap!
Visit any local coffee roaster and one will see a pile of these jute bags stacked up in a corner of the warehouse. Here at Fortuna Coffee, we have no shortage of this versatile crafting material, as we go through roughly 150,000 lbs. of coffee annually. Personally, I’ve made bags out of some with coffee origin artwork painted or printed on the bags. They also make for great framed wall decor. In the wild, I’ve seen people use them to reupholster chairs or make accent pillows. At coffee shows, they have been used as table spreads or turned into table runners.
For a more festive approach, here at Fortuna we have made wreaths from these bags and have also filled them with presents and used them as decorations. You can even keep the family occupied over the holiday festivities by using them for sack races or other crafting ideas. During my personal crafting projects, I have discovered that furry family members enjoy napping on a stacks of the bags, so one can even consider making a pet bed out of them. Honestly, the creative possibilities are endless. A quick search on platforms like Pinterest are sure to inspire one to get crafty with the material.
For the Gardener
If you or someone you know is has a serious green thumb, introduce them to the wonderful uses of burlap bags and coffee chaff. Coffee chaff is the dried skin or husk that comes off the seeds during roasting. Chaff is loaded with nutrients like nitrogen which make for a great additive to a garden. Mushroom cultivation also thrives on spent coffee and coffee chaff. Additionally, burlap bags are biodegradable, as they are made from naturally organic fibers of the jute plant. You can use them to line garden beds and garden pathways to mitigate weeds.
If the weather turns and you need to quickly cover and protect young crops, coffee sacks can also be used to provide shade from blistering sun or from frost. Since burlap bags are large, they can be used to protect root balls of trees if you are working on some bigger landscaping projects in the yard. If you don't have the yard space for a full spread garden, then you can make some hanging basket planters to suspend off your deck or bring a natural element into a smaller living space indoors.
If you have some time and creative ambition percolating, then you can utilize coffee sacks to curate a special gift for all your family and friends. If you’re not so crafty, then you can certainly just use them as an eco-friendly gift wrap for those larger, more awkward gifts. We won’t judge your skill sets, but just know, we greatly appreciate anyone who wants to repurpose these piles of burlap.
Contact us directly if you are interested or visit the Fortuna Coffee for burlap coffee sacks.