When I stumbled across the etsy shop humorously called “bombz” aka seed bombz, it made me smile. So I’m sharing it with you as one of my Sunday Sustainability tips.
What seed bombz are, are packets of seeds and organic compost, shaped in little hearts in the most darling packages. You can order in multiple different quantities so they’d be perfect for gifts, shower favors, or to give as little random acts of kindness. Not only are you spreading small favors, but you’re giving the Earth a little hand too.
This week I don’t have a particular tip to share, other than to remind you that one of the best ways to take care of our environment is to buy recycled, repurposed and renewable items whenever possible.
What I DO want to share however is a shop I stumbled across on Etsy in my continual search for gorgeous organic, natural and recycled items.
Heather, the creator behind the scarves of Estelle Shop, uses entirely 100% repurposed material. They are eye-catching and comfy looking scarves, that really also could serve as necklaces as well. I love how they are so versatile and can be worn many ways, and additionally have a variety of colors in each, making them very easy to coordinate with different outfits.
I think my favorite is the scarf in shades of gray, maroon and white. Though if another color scheme strikes your fancy you are likely to find one to suit you in the shop as well.
It’s encouraging to see that many home product companies are finally hopping on the environmental bandwagon and making home cleaning products that are more friendly to the environment and less toxic. Perhaps this is because a larger majority of consumers have started to become very wary of the amount of chemicals in the products they are using. However, it really should be no secret that you can make your own cleaning products that are just as effective for far less money using some very basic ingredients.
All you really need to get you started is baking soda, white vinegar, and possibly some natural castile soap like Dr. Bronner’s, reusable cloths and spray bottles and you’ll have a major cleaning arsenal with numerous possibilities right at your fingertips.
Here you can download a handy little printable sheet of a few major natural cleaning recipesNatural Cleaning Tips
In addition to the printout here’s a few other tips to consider:
*To kill mold and mildew naturally try vinegar, grapefruit seed extract or tea tree oil.
*Sprinkle baking soda to freshen carpets.
*Simmer a few drops of essential oils in water on the stove for a natural air freshener.
*Use lemon and orange rinds to get rid of a stinky garbage disposal smell.
*Get rid of rust by using salt and lime juice(let it sit 1-2 hours) and a little elbow grease.
*Repel moths natural with a sachet of dried lavender or rosemary or cedar wood blocks.
*Use natural sponges and towels instead of synthetics and paper towels.
*To eliminate a large majority of dirt and dust in the home be sure to take those shoes off a the door!
*Remember baking soda and vinegar can be used in numerous ways to clean just about anything.
I just wanted to share a few videos produced by Graham Veysey related to the Sustainable Cleveland 2019 Summit created by
You can also visit a social networking ring dedicated to Cleveland Sustainability if you want to discover more information, join efforts or connect with green-minded individuals in the city.
While some of this may be wishful thinking, at least someone is THINKING and I’m glad to see that discussions were brought to the table, and an attempts to create awareness are being made. It will be nice to see how efforts are successful. I guess we’ll know in 9 years, won’t we?
There are many reasons to live greener lives, and there are countless sources telling us exactly how to do that.
Today I’d like to take a moment to ask you to sit back and think about when you were *really* inspired to live in a more sustainable manner. What inspired you the most? What is your core reason for doing so. Indeed, we live greener for a multitude of reasons, but what was your original impetus?
Did a desire for better health inspire you to eat more organic food, which in turn led you to a belief in farmers markets, organic gardening, and plant management?
Did a growing concern over our energy crises make you start turning off the lights, walk to work more frequently, and invest in alternative energy companies?
Perhaps your love of your children made you plant a tree with them, sponsor an animal protection program at the zoo, and make you clean up a playground.
One thing often leads to another, what was the first thing that made you step on the path?
If I did not include your original inspiration, by all means do share!
For today’s Sustainability Sunday I am pleased to introduce a guest writer to you!
Christine, from Windy Hill Fibers takes a good look at re-purposed clothing after the debacle of H&M’s wastefulness.
Here’s what Christine has to share:
You may have heard around the beginning of the month that an H&M store in New York had been slashing and throwing out unsold clothing. Bags and bags of clothes were not donated to charity, but rather were cut up and discarded to be sent off to a landfill. In response to this incident, H&M stated that it is company policy to donate the clothes, and that it would look into the situation in New York. So while H&M may not be dumping clothes into the landfills now, Americans are throwing out perfectly good clothing at a rate of 67.9 pounds per person per year. That totals nearly 2 quadrillion pounds per year, and most of it doesn’t have to end up there.
So why do people throw out clothing? Maybe it’s out of style, or it has a stain, or the cat or dog clawed a hole in it, but that doesn’t mean it has to go in the garbage. Any clothing you no longer want that is still in wearable condition could be donated to a charity, like Goodwill. You can also take those old clothes and refashion them into something new, and it’s easier than you may think.
Remember that reusing what you already have is an important part of a sustainable lifestyle, and your clothing is no exception. Repurposing clothing is actually a growing trend, and there are numerous books and websites offering information and tutorials. Popular sites like Wardrobe Refashion and Threadbanger offer videos, tips, and inspiration for taking those old clothes and turning them into something fun for yourself. Books like Alabama Stitch Book by Natalie Chanin, and Generation T, by Megan Nicolay, show you what to do with those old t-shirts, and how to make them into lovely skirts, blankets, and more. [Editor's note: Also check out the book AlterNation by my friend Shannon Okey] If your clothes are too worn out or stained to reuse, cut them up to use as rags, in place of paper towels, for doubly green savings. If you crochet or knit, you can even cut up those old clothes and turn them into yarn. Learn how with this tutorial on the ecokaren website.
Many Etsy artisans are applying their creativity to refashioning clothes.
Glamarita makes incredible gowns from old neckties.
Heidiandseek has a talent for combining colors and patterns,
So the next time you clean out your closet, look at everything with a critical and creative eye. Donate what you can and repurpose the rest. You’ll be saving yourself some money and helping out our planet at the same time.
Not too long ago I posted an article about Cleveland ranking #16 in a study of 50 cities for sustainability. Recently I came across an article on The Positively Cleveland Blog which compiled a great list of ways business, non-profits and other organizations throughout the city are trying to be greener and more sustainable. The post included not only information about the RTA Healthline’s hybrid vehicles, and the Cleveland Metropark Zoos extensive recycling efforts, but also fun facts about companies such as the Great Lakes Brewing Co. Fatty Wagon shuttle bus that runs on the restaurant’s grease. Definitely check out the post to discover many of the other ways Cleveland is going greener.
If you want to make your own small impact (or big impact if you create a habit) check out SustainLane’s local Action Challenge. You pick a sustainable activity from their list of ideas, take a photo of yourself completing the challenge activity and then upload it for the chance to win prizes. Are you photo shy? You can at least check it out
Take a moment to think about the last few toys you have bought your child (or neice, nephew, friend’s child etc..) What were those toys made of? Were they plastic? Did they require batteries? Did they come in tons of packaging? Could they break easily and would the child get bored with them after awhile.
We all know children frequently want whatever the latest toy craze is, and that stores are filled to the brim with enticing items, but what they really are filled to the brim with is future landfill material.
Many toys on the market today are not built to last the test of time, yet alone even last the child’s attention span.
*Look for well-made toys that will last through the years. Especially look for heirloom toys that may be passed from generation to generation.
*Encourage children to take care of their toys. Children have a lot of empathy for the condition of the earth, and when you present to them that they can help it by not wasting you are teaching them a lesson in responsibility.
*If children do get bored with or outgrow toys and you no longer wish to keep them, donate them to a school, charity or resell store instead of tossing them into the trash.
Here’s a few great toys that are much more environmentally friendly than plastic.
Natural Dinosaurs (set of 3), $30 by Happy Squash Toys
Pumpkin House Playset, $95.00 by Muddy Feet
Senet, and Ancient Egyptian Boardgame, $60 by Ancient Game Cupboard
Brown Corduroy Jacket for Blythe Doll, $15 by Pinkyjane