For the month of August the theme in Sew For A Change was recycling. We were to set ourselves three goals on how to improve our recycling. I must admit that it was difficult to find three challenges as we already have so much in order (we have organised a great system, the kiddo knows what to do (or asks if he’s unsure), our food waste is turned into biogas by the waste company). But I wanted those ten points… My challenges were:
- Recycle textile
I did not know that textiles could be recycled. So far for me they have only gone in the waste bin. Another lesson learnt during Sew For a Change! I have not investigated if our recycling station has textile recycling (since everything is picked up at home, we hardly ever go there) . However, I did learn that there’s a home décor store, Hemtex, who has textile refashion and gives a voucher to be used in the store on your next purchase for each bag you hand in (50 SEK on a 300 SEK purchase). As someone in the Facebook group mentioned, I don’t think they considered a bunch of sewers seeing this. I have now organized (not very well at the moment, two bags in my sewing room, one with scraps and small bits to go to textile recycling and one with bigger pieces to be donated to the kids’ pre-school (if they want it, otherwise it will be recycled the old fashioned way).
- Refashion usable textiles
You know those garments you’ve made that you for some reason don’t really like or have no more use of? We all have those, right? Even if I don’t want to wear them myself, there’s something difficult about throwing out the clothes I’ve made with my own two hands. However, I found no difficulties in chopping them up for clothing for the kids. It was quite liberating actually, making a new home for my discarded clothes. The nursing top, along with the remnants of the fabric, became the coolest leggings ever for Little E, she also got a new fall cap in the dress fabric. I have always taken out zips and buttons, now if I discard something I will see if I can make use of the fabric as well. Also, I cut off a torn pair of the kiddo’s jeans to make shorts. As for the back of the cut off jeans, I made patches for another pair of torn jeans. Recycling at its best!
- Reduce waste.
Even if we have a pretty good recycling system, it is always better to reduce waste altogether. In order to reduce glass waste and transport I have filled the freezer with blackberries, for my winter needs of berries and I have pickled beets (ecological and very locally produced (our backyard)). It was all put in jars and containers we already had, thus reducing waste. I have bought myself a moon cup, let’s I hope I’ll like it as much as many others! I held on to the plastic bags that the kiddo’s underwear came in, perfect for hanging on the desk while sewing and using for threads. Before throwing something out in the future I will see if I can find other use for it.
As for shopping: Nothing! To be honest I don’t miss browsing the chain stores anymore. I don’t want to look like everyone else. However, I find thrift stores extremely inspiring and it’s a good thing they’re quite inaccessible for me otherwise I’d shop till I dropped, which is not the point of a consumption challenge. Now I feel I’m at a point where I can dress fun and varying, while adding pieces one by one through sewing. Thrift shopping has allowed me to try new silhouettes and shapes and has given me a clearer view of what I want and wear. Win-win! I also gotten into buying household items at flea markets, especially things that I don’t have an urgent need for (on my fall list I have lemonade pitcher, a cake plate, pearl necklaces (for crafting pearls) and kitchen towels to make fabric napkins).
Ingoing points: 48 p
Star challenge: +10 p
Outgoing points: 58 p
One last confession before I leave you. In my teens I used to watch The Bold And The Beautiful. Yes. Therefore I cannot think about recycling without thinking of Sally.