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What is a Ditty Bag and What is it Used For?

Ditty Bags

Want to pack up your things quickly and be on your way? Then a ditty bag might be what you need. These little allrounders are made for those trips when you can't overpack but want to keep all your essentials in one place. Whether you go hiking, camping, or boating, they will be a handy addition to your next trip!

What is a ditty bag, and why do you need one? Find out from the article below.

Ditty Bag

What is a Ditty Bag?

A ditty bag is a small pouch used by travelers to store essentials such as gadgets, toiletries, and medicines. They are great for any trip as they allow you to keep similar items in one place rather than scattered around in the pockets of your larger bags. What's best, they force you to pack efficiently and not to take anything unnecessary with you on your travels.

Ditty bags come in different sizes and materials, usually with only one compartment and a drawstring or zip lock closure. A canvas ditty bag can be used for hiking and camping, but if you're adventuring on the water, you'll want something water-resistant. In this case, recycled sailcloth bags are the way to go to protect your most important belongings.

History of the Ditty Bag

The history of the ditty bag dates back to the 18th century. At the time, navy sailors used large canvas bags to store their clothing and other essentials. Sailors had to learn how to pack efficiently because a ditty bag only had one compartment! The better your packing skills, the more space you had for other things, like letters from your loved ones or souvenirs.

But why is it called a ditty bag? The origin of the term is unknown, but the most likely interpretation is that ditty comes from the word 'ditto,' meaning two of everything, such as spare clothing or supplies that sailors had to pack. Its function was similar to a ditty-box, used to store needles, threads, and scissors. As we know, sailors also had to be skilled in sewing to make their uniforms fit perfectly or repair them, as there was no room for extra clothes in the cramped living quarters. That's why these supplies were indispensable on their voyages.

But that's not the only explanation: some experts suggest that ditty derives from the Saxon word 'dite,' meaning tidy; however, the name may also refer to the canvas material these bags were made of. Whatever the case, the term is now widespread, and the ditty bag is still used for recruits to store their essential items, such as a sewing kit and toiletries. Of course, this inspired the backpacking ditty bag of today: a small pouch used to keep smaller items together in a larger bag for travel.

Ways to use Casco Totes' Ditty Bags

Now you know what a ditty bag is, but you might wonder why you need one. Well, these little bags are just so practical!

You can take them hiking, backpacking, or camping; they will come in handy when you need extra storage for your gadgets, toiletries, snacks, and anything important to you. Depending on your activity, you can opt for canvas ditty bags or go with a more durable, heavy-duty material, such as recycled sailcloth, especially if you plan to spend some time on the water. That's the use Casco Totes had in mind when we designed our Ditty bags

Casco Totes' Ditty Bags take inspiration from sailor ditty bags. They, too, have one compartment and a drawstring closure, but we have upgraded the fabric: they are made of 100% water-resistant nylon spinnaker cloth and come with a marine-grade water-resistant bottom. The advantage of this material over canvas is that you can use it for water-based activities such as boating, kayaking, and fishing trips without worrying that your stuff gets wet. (Of course, it helps if you store them in a larger sail cloth bag for double the protection!)

The Casco Totes Ditty Bag comes in four colors: red, blue, yellow, and green, so that you can get better organized during your longer trips: you can have one for your gadgets, another for your toiletries, another for snacks, and so on. Thanks to their small size, they don't take up too much space in your travel bag, and they also force you to pack efficiently—just like a sailor—and leave all the unnecessary stuff behind.

Stranded on land? A sailor ditty bag can come in handy even if you're not going on an adventure. You can keep them in your car or daytote for your daily essentials or use them for storing jigsaw puzzles, dog biscuits, or anything you don't want lying scattered around. Or why not get creative and use it as a gift bag instead of disposable wrapping? Your loved ones will surely appreciate the gesture and will be thrilled to have a practical accessory they can reuse over and over.

Whatever you use them for, you can be sure that this waterproof, durable little bag will provide good service for many years to come!

Get Your Recycled Sailcloth Bag from Casco Totes

Looking for a sturdy bag for your next trip? Casco Totes has got you covered with a large selection of recycled sailcloth totes, weekenders, duffel bags, and ditty bags for day trips, long weekends, or extended adventures.

All our recycled sailcloth bags and home decor items are handmade in Maine, in the same workshop where we make our sails. We strive to reduce waste by transforming old sails into practical accessories you can use on your daily adventures, whether on land or water.

Need some inspiration? Have a look at our bags online to find your favorite pieces, and start packing for your next big trip!

If you have questions about Casco Totes products and our manufacturing process, get in touch with our friendly customer service at 207.869.5282 or fill out our contact form

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