Wednesday, April 23, 2008

It's Good to be GREEN

I know that I'm a day late! What else is new?? But in celebration of Earth Day, I wanted to take an opportunity to thank all of you quilters out there for being green! Yup, We are all recyclers even if we don't realize it. Think about all of those scraps that we cut and cut until there is nothing left to cut and add to your scrappy quilts! And all of the fabric swapping we do! And the prizes we offer for free when we don't want or need some quilt related item! And all the bags we make!

I want to give an extra special pat on the back to those Aussie and English gals who hit the op shops and use the shirts, skirts, blankets, and other items they find to use in their quilts. And we can't forget the art quilters who can take just about anything (tyvek envelopes, mesh onion bags, you name it!)and turn into art.

One of my New Year's Resolutions was to extend recycling into my quilting and into my life on this planet, I wanted to share a couple of things that I've been doing to be a greener consumer and quilter and general human being.

1. I've stopped buying paper napkins and gone to cloth. I had a couple of table cloths that were pretty but had some serious stains, so I just cut out the stained parts and used the rest to make cloth napkins. I've since started looking at yard sales and Goodwill ( or as I call it Awesome Williams) for table cloths to use for napkins. We've also cut back dramatically on using paper towels. I keep a bag of rags cut to paper towel size handy and use those instead.

2. Old hand towels and towels that aren't saved for rags are sent to the dog shelter in town. They can always use them and the dogs don't care if they are a little grungy!

3. My shop hop bags are now in my trunk to use in the grocery store. No more plastic or paper bags!

4. I've also been saving my dryer sheets and using them for the foundations for my string blocks. Although they are rectangles instead of squares, they will make a nice quilt and will smell great!

5. After working on my February TIF Challenge, "Blowin' in the Wind", I decided to put the old clothesline back up. I don't use it all the time and for everything but I definitely use it for my sheets and blouses and stuff that I would hang to air dry anyway. I know that some of you live in places where you are not "allowed" to have a clothesline. I don't know when a clothesline became an "eyesore" but that was a sad day. Recently, a gal in our area challenged the covenant about clotheslines and won! Now that it is "chic" to be green, you might want to think about challenging that stupid rule.

6. We also compost our scraps. It's not a lot of work and right now I have a bin full of the most beautiful black dirt to use in the garden this spring. Our town actually encourages composting and gives out free bins to hold your compost. We are greedy! We have three bins going right now!

So here's my Earth Day challenge. Post the ways you help save the planet in your comments here or on your blog! I'm sure there are other little things that we can all do to make this world a greener place!

P.S. Kermit and all the other critters on this planet thank you!


Debra said...

I take the little plastic meshbag from tomatoes and fill it with the leftover soap slivers to use for a personal loofah. The meshbag holds all those little pieces together just fine and I can lather up until they are completely gone.

I also save the grocery store ziplock bags from grapes and use them for items that don't mind the holey bags. I have my laptop cord and mouse in one right now.

Libby said...

I keep my canvas totes under the seat in my truck . . . I was having too much trouble remembering to take them along. As soon as I unload and put my purchases away, I fold up the bags and take them right back out - now I always have them, even when I don't set out to buy something *s*
I love the idea of cutting up the tablecloths. I still have my 'oblong' cloths even though we switched to a round table some time back. Guess what I'm going to do this afternoon? Thanks for the hint.

Shelina said...

I've been trying to work on all three parts of reduce, reuse and recycle. I am trying to reduce the amount of paper, purchases, etc., so that there will be less to trash overall. And I try to freecycle my "trash" or try to reuse it in another way so that it doesn't wind up in a landfill. And the recycling part is for the things I normally would throw away - but now I collect and make a trip to the recycling bin to dispose of.

Tracey @ozcountryquiltingmum said...

Yes, quilters were recycling before it was fashionable...and love the shams from the last post, great, tracey

tami said...

I have been trying very hard to be green this year. I have always tried to reduce, reuse and recycle. This year I am trying to go green in a bigger way. I am looking into geothermal heating and a wind turbine to make my own eco friendly heat and electricity. I have also been "encouraging" everyone at work to be more green. They all laugh at me because I bring my own cloth napkins and silverware for lunch.
They all have become more aware though and tell me they have started using grocery totes as well as other measures they are taking.

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