I love using our big sturdy plastic yogurt buckets around the place. They’re endlessly useful for toting all sorts of things both solid and liquid. One in each hand, equally loaded, adds valuable equilibrium to any heavy carry. Sadly the cheap plastic handles get brittle and snap after a few years. A pity, when the buckets themselves still have years of life left.

So I have a hack for that. Putting together my 1970’s macrame skills (jute owl plant hanger anyone?), a broken-handled bucket and 15 pieces of baling twine, I can fit a new handle to an old bucket in about 20 minutes.


My earliest prototype is a few years old now, left out in all sorts of weather, and still going strong. The baling twine won’t rot and the knots tighten with each use.

I choose nine lengths of twine with their ties near one end and trim those off. Then I knot them at the end and slip the other end through a one inch hole I drilled in the top side of the bucket, knotting on the inside. I divide the nine into three groups of three and tie the same simple macrame knot over and over again. This creates a fat corkscrew that’s comfy in the hand. You could instead use sets of two, or even one, to make a thinner handle.  You could do a flat braid too but I think the corkscrew is prettier.

When the side strings get short I tie a new length on each and that is enough to create the handle you see here. You could go longer or shorter depending on your needs and your baling twine supply. When I am done knotting I push the ends through a second hole I drilled on the other side of my bucket and knot on the inside. I trim up any loose ends, and voila, a fully functional portable container.

Plus I guess I can cross “repurposing waste plastic into something useful” off my bucket list!


Yes I washed it before I put food in it lol!