Most Sierra readers have been toting their own totes for years. Now that more than 100 U.S. cities, including Los Angeles and Seattle, forbid stores from doling out single-use plastic bags (and levy fees on paper ones), it's time for the slackers to sack up as well.
Evoke jet-setter nostalgia with this zipper-top Cargo Shoulder Tote from BLUE Q, which donates 1 percent of the proceeds from every purchase to the Nature Conservancy. Each piece Blue Q sells, including this travel-themed looker, is made from 95 percent postconsumer recycled materials--mostly melted-down grain sacks and water bottles. $15, blueq.com
The Essential Tote B by PELCOR is made of "cork leather" harvested from the Portuguese cork oak--a tree that's ideal because of its regenerative bark. This is a statement piece, but you can use it as a purse as well as a shopping bag. No two are exactly alike. [euro]158 (about $215), pelcor.pt
See-through produce sacks let checkers scan items without pawing through your pears. Leave the store's plastic on the roll by stocking up on FLIP AND TUMBLE produce bags, made from a polyester mesh that lets you wash veggies right in the bag. They're sold by Branch, which only sells vetted eco-wares. $12 for a set of 5, branchhome.com
From Jitesh Patel, a British designer who runs the Totebags blog, comes a book simply titled THE TOTE BAG (Laurence King, 2011). It's an ode to the satchel as art canvas that's actually packaged in its own whimsical cloth carryall. $25, laurenceking.com
When tucked and zipped into itself, the bunny tote bag from PICNICA doubles as a child's toy. Just make sure to wash it after your grocery trip and before handing it to your little one. $29, www.japanesemoderndesign.com