Eco Crafts!

{Eco-craft is the name of a company in the UK that sells recycled paper products. I love their products and use them regularly; but they are bogarting the perfect name for this post! If you want them:}

Handkerchiefs ? Handkerchieves? Hankies!

I received a wee book as a Christmas present, it’s full of tips to reduce your use of disposable plastic in day-to-day life. This is something I’ve been working on, over the last few years. Nonetheless, there was plenty in there that I hadn’t changed and some things I hadn’t even considered!

I made myself a list and found that lots of the changes required “products” and some of them I could certainly attempt making myself. So I did. I made some handkerchiefs from scraps of cotton; old pyjamas, pillow case, and some leftover unbleached cotton. I also had a plain silk handkerchief which I painted with silk paints that I already had. It makes sense to use what you already have, if your intention is to reduce waste! The silk hankie is very soft and dries really quickly, so I would recommend silk for when you have a runny nose!

Beeswax Wraps

Next I made some beeswax wraps (note the repeat use of pyjama fabric!) There are lots of different recipes & methods online; I used beeswax only, with the “iron method”, but some of the wraps are not waxy enough – I will try the “oven method” next time and maybe add some oil to the mix. (But they are fantastically useful already, even badly made)

I am lucky enough to have a zero-waste shop nearby, Meanwell Wholefoods in Ennis, but I needed convenient packaging to transport the goods home. I happened to have some unused unbleached-cotton bags, leftover from a children’s printing workshop, which are the perfect size. They worked fine with pegs to close them, but the zips I added mean you can throw them in your backpack without worrying about spills. And I like the idea of labeling the bags; no need for a shopping list – just bring the required bags!

Felted soaps
My eco-friendly, coordinated sink!

I also felted some soap for hand-washing in the family bathroom. I cut the bar of soap into thirds, and rounded the corners before felting. (We had previously been using a full-sized, felted bar but it was too big for small hands, as it swells up with use). Practically speaking, this works unbelievably well! The bar stays quite wet inside the felt which means it foams easily, the soap lasts much longer, and there’s less soap-scum to clean up. Needless to say, much better than liquid soap for waste, and for skin!

I rotate the bars every few days, to give them a chance to dry out but I’m not sure if there could be an issue with bacterial growth. I need to do some research on that, to be certain.

The wee, cursey book of ideas & some sanitary towels

Last, but never least, I tried making my own cloth sanitary towel! It’s not pretty (I’m a lazy sewer), but it’s very effective. I had some thick wool felt scraps (the stuff you can buy as a sheet to go under your ironing board cover) and I used this as the absorbent core. I had some pads and liners already from OtherMother, which are great – I just needed more! I also cut a “liner” shape out of beeswaxed fabric, to go under the pad to prevent leakage. Verdict is out on that, I’ll report back after more research.

I am very happy that I took the time to make these few bits and I even passed the book on, to spread the word! Clearly this is not a tutorial – I dipped in and out of different online tutorials to find my way – but I’m happy to share details if anyone has questions. Take care x

2 thoughts on “Eco Crafts!

  1. Class Bríanán!!

    You are deadly as they say in wee Monaghan x

    I have 4 weddings coming up this year. So 4 special cards needed.

    Love Olivia An Spidéal.

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