Everything you guys have done looks excellent; i've read (well, skimmed) the whole post.
I meant to join up in time to do June's craft, but July is more up my alley anyways. I make bottle cap belts and notebooks already.
Can't remember if anyone already posted this, but here's a tut for sewable plastic fabric out of old bags:http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=178442.0
I think I'm going to try making some of that fabric and then using it for a big square reusable shopping bag.