Alex DaBaugh on creating eco-friendly tote bags reusable plastic

by Alexander Dabagh

·1 min read

Alex DaBaugh is turning trash into totes and cleaning up New York one plastic bag at a time.

TheGrio collaborated with The Weather Channel and Pattrn to share their series Faces of Change – people of color doing the work to promote green solutions and sustainable communities.

Second generation leather-smith Alex Dabaugh uses repurposed plastic bags to create eco-friendly tote bags ‘aNYbag.’

Alex Dabaugh
(Photo Credit:

When I started this project, my father looked at me like I had two heads,” says DaBaugh.

He was like,’ What do you do with all this plastic? We are a leather company, we’re a leather factory. We been making leather goods for the last 35 years.

When DeBaugh mentioned the idea to his employees , they thought he was crazy as well.

“With each aNYbag, we use 95 single used plastic bags or two pounds of plastic to make one bag,” says DaBaugh.


Credit: Made by Alex NYC
Credit: Made by Alex NYC

He adds, “There’s no machine out there that was made specifically for what we’re doing. We’re rigging all our other machines to make this work. Each bag is individual to itself. Each bag is a different story. You know, it’s as authentic as you can get to New York City.