This month, our focus in the Sew For A Change challenge was home detox. I’m going to confess right away, I have lost a bit of momentum and am quite happy that I don’t miss retail shopping at all, I am pleased with sewing and second hand shopping. Our three focus areas were:
Plastic is not fantastic
Learn what the different plastic numbers 1-7 mean and go through your home and find+replace the worst ones. Eg plastic shower curtains, food containers, kids toys (throw away all plastic toys made before 2007 and all plastic toys made outside EU), vinyl prints on clothes etc.
Having small children we do have a lot of plastic toys at home. Soon the baby toys will go and I will make an effort to get new toys in other materials. Legos and Duplos will be excepted as they are awesome toys and it’s hard to get a valid substitute. But this is definitely something I will work on in the future, trying to reduce plastic. It won’t be zero tolerance but I will try and steer the kids and any potential gift-givers towards the non-plastic alternative. The kids have some vinyl prints, I avoid them but some have been gifted. They’re OK to use since they’re a small part of the kids’ wardrobes. Shower curtains – we have none.
Avoid poisoning your food
Make a kitchen inventory and replace teflon/non-stick coated pots, pans and trays. Replace cooking utensils out of plastic with wood or metal. Especially if they are made of black plastic or melamine. The old ones can be used for something else than cooking. Plant flowers in them, dig in the garden or whatever – but avoid mixing plastic+heat+food. Try to avoid using plastic bags for food storage; cotton bags, glas jars or bread bins go a long way. Avoid buying food in metal tins (they have a plastic coating with BPA on the inside). Maybe even try to avoid getting your fruit and vege in plastic bags? Buy reusable fabric “produce bags” or sew your own.
I usually bring lunch to work in plastic lunchboxes. Bad Helena! At least I move my food from the plastic container onto a plate before putting it in the microwave. I did look at metallic and glass containers but they are so heavy and expensive. Plus I don’t know how they will take to the freezer. Excuses, excuses. We use plastic utensils, I will look for new ones. I hardly use the Teflon pan, my husband does, I prefer the steel or cast iron ones. We use a lot of plastic bags for storage, although I must say I’m intrigued by Alexandra’s bees wraps. In the future I will look for alternatives to metal tins, but can’t gurantee anything, I don’t think my favourite tomatoes come in anything other than metal tins, but I will change where I can.
If you are buying new furniture, be a difficult customer and demand information regarding flame retardants (shall be avoided at any cost!). They are impossible to break down and they are everywhere in the environment now, in the fish in the deep sea and in newborn babies to name a few. Be suspicious of most soft furniture, even mattresses. This is actually an area where buying second hand/vintage is not always best. Many of the really scary flame retardants from back in the day are now banned.
We have no furniture purchases planned, but I will keep this in my mind for the future.
So, as you can see, I haven’t fully committed to the task this month, but I am taking my newfound knowledge with me to the future in hopes of reducing plastics more at home
Despite getting no bonus points this month, I have spent some. I went shopping for my fall plan, so I have no more plans to buy more fabric, what I have should last me a while and I now have all the fabrics I need to complete my fall plan. I will reserve some points for fabric shopping in Spain, where we’re going in December, and I probably need some new underwear. As I said before, I don’t miss shopping and I’m having a lot of fun looking for finds at second hand stores and flea markets that I doubt I will go on a shopping binge come January.
Ingoing points: 58p
Cotton twill (skirt), 1.6 m: -4p
Cotton (blouse), 1,6m: -3,2p
Cotton voile (blouse lining), 0,9m:-2,25p
Cotton college fabric (blazer), 2,3m: -5,75
Duchess satin (contrast for Michelle the Third), 0.4p: -1,4p
Total purchases: -16.6 p
Outgoing points: 41.4p