Category Archives: Eco Friendly

Up [Cycled] With Kids – Motley Mode Mondays

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Children’s Clothing Summer Girls Dress – Upcycled 4-5YR by BlumenKinder on Etsy.

I love dressing little people. I love it so much that the minute I learned that my siblings were expectant parents, I was out in the mall looking for those special little onesies and booties for the new special people coming into my life. As an Obstetrics Nurse, I have handled with care a lot of itty bitty new born babes, and given lots of first baths, and helped with first diaper changes [men are hilarious when faced with their first sticky meconium coated tushie]. I rarely get a chance to choose the clothes that these little ones wear home, so when my siblings had their little bundles, I was adamant that I be in charge of their “I’m going home in this outfit ‘Outifts’.”

Cool Up-Cycled Jumpers for Autumn/Spring by SCRAPPY KIDS on Etsy.
The Kenna Coat – Green Velvet Cocktail Coat w/ Black Satin Lining [Various Sizes, From Drapes!] by gibsonsANCHOR on Etsy.

One of the most wonderful things about having little people is giving them comfortable clothes that have lots of personality, that are made for play or special occasions, that are completely unique and even one-of-a-kind [OOAK]. You have to move fast, before they get into grade school and start demanding specific colours and styles, and before they hit their teens and just want to look like everyone else. It is a very small but special window, that time when you can have fun with your kids wardrobes, and it doesn’t even have to cost a lot of money. You just need to think outside of the ‘brand name’ box, so to speak.

Friends 4 Ever – Archie Super Cool Upcycled Pieced Dress, Size 8 by OKEE DOKEE KIDS Boutique on Etsy.
Recycled T-Shirt Skirt, Shreddies – Size 7 by Tricycle Crafts on Etsy.

One fabulous way to be sure your kids are looking their one-of-a-kind best, is by nabbing some great handmade clothes, or better yet, handmade and Up-cycled clothing. What does that mean? Clothes made special just for your kiddo from what used to be other clothes, scraps of fabric and findings, and re-cycled or re-made into an entirely new and wonderful garment.  Not only are these clothes Eco-Friendly, they are also usually extremely comfortable made soft by previous use, and also unlikely to warp, shrink, or fade.  They can also be hella cute, and very funky, made to fit both personality and body type both.

Poor Pitiful Pearl “Do Not Conform To The Patterns of This World” Bib by Poor Pitiful Pearl on Etsy.
Girl’s Pink Dress, 2T Toddler Clothing, Green Floral Print – Eco Friendly Upcycled ‘KARA’ by My Fair Maiden on Etsy.

This amazing selection of Up-cycled Kids Clothing was all found with a quick search on Etsy, my favorite place to find amazing goodies for one-of-a-kind kids.  There are high-cost brands that try to make their clothing look like it is all mix-and-match Up-cycled gold, I am thinking of brands like Oilily, but they will end up costing you their weight in gold too. Better to buy something that is actually the real deal that you can get for a steal, and have a real person, the seller and creator, that you can speak to about your child’s actual measurements and needs. You can often request custom items, or specify colours that you are looking for, it is like having a personal stylist work with you to make your fashion dreams come true. Almost like a fairy g-d mother, if you will, taking those tattered rags and turning them into Cinderella’s ball gown.

Johnny Cash Upcycled/Recycled ShorTEEs Kung-Fu Pants, 4T by shorTEEs on Etsy.
Upcycled Girl’s Skirt Age 6, Size 6T Recycled Fabrics Patchwork Design by Martisanne Handmade on Etsy.

Make sure you check out these very special “Up-cyclers” on Etsy, many of them make adult clothing as well, and find something just as one-of-a-kind as your adorable, hilarious, and talented kids are.

Reef Spirit Boy T-Shirt, Boy’s Clothing – Australian Art Print Upcycled/Recycled Clothing OOAK, Size 3 Years by ALUMA for KIDS on Etsy.
Quirky Coat Girl’s Size 2-4, Must Like Hand-Me-Downs, Handmade 2nd Life Jacket – Ready To Ship by WiseSewcialTies on Etsy.

Cleaning Up With Kindness – Found On A Friday

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SewEco Reusable Snack Bags on Etsy

As a newly born “vegan”, I am looking for ways to reduce my carbon footprint, reduce my use of chemicals and natural resources, and still maintain that fabulous air of geek chic that I have cultivated for myself. Sometimes, there are challenges in the way of finding that perfect new time-saving and Eco-friendly object of desire for your home, but luckily, that is not always the case. Here are a few fabulous finds that you can easily put to work in your home and they will make you feel all green and fuzzy all over.

SNACKABY Eco Friendly Dishwasher Safe Reusable Sandwich Bags on Etsy.

The first area where you can make a quick and easy change is swapping out all those plastic sandwich and snack baggies you use in your own, or your children’s lunch kits.  Yes they are convenient, but they cost a fortune and end up in the trash.  There are heaps of options that you can make yourself, or take advantage of the many fabrications and expert touches that can be found on Etsy. Many of these bags can be cleaned in the dishwasher, and certainly in the washing machine, and have well “Serged” edge details that will stand the test of time. Unlike bulky plastic containers that are forever losing their lids, and take up room in a lunch bag or backpack, these collapse flat, and are perfect for smaller snacks like dry cereal or raisins, without offering a challenge to little hands.

Inspired Stitchery Unpaper Towels, Selection Of Colors on Etsy.

Paper Towel is another product many of us are forever buying, and once used, tossing out. Unlike a kitchen cloth, which may harbor bacteria after a single use, a paper towel offers the ease of a clean wipe for window cleaning, and can be used in a variety of ways. So how do you replace something so indispensable? You buy or make yourself some reusable toweling that does the same job but can be washed endlessly, maintaining it’s lint free surface, and absorbency.

Sew Happy Designs by Abby Custom Reusable Cloth Paper Towel Roll With Snaps on Etsy.

Personally, I wash all my lettuce and leafy veggies like kale as soon as I come home from market. I then place the leaves on toweling, and roll it up before placing it in the fridge crisper compartment or a storage bin. This is a huge waste of paper towels, but it makes perfect sense for a re-usable thin toweling that can be used week after week.

Kootsac Reusable Bulk Food and Produce Bags on Etsy.

We have all been a party to the movement to replace plastic and even paper grocery bags with cloth or canvas reusable bags, and many of us have embraced this change. But take it a step further and you can replace a few other shopping bags on your trip.  For instance, if you buy bulk foods, particularly dry goods, nuts, or candy, you are likely forever looking for that roll of plastic bags and twisty ties near the bins. How about using your  very own cute baggies that you can easily stash into those reusable grocery totes.  You can use them over and over, and they won’t add any weight to your scales or garbage to your bins at home.

The High Fiber Reusable Produce Bags on Etsy.

Similarly, you can get yourself some reusable vegetable bags that can go from market, right into the fridge when you are in a hurry. Made of linen or mesh, you can pop these directly into the fridge and not worry about things going mushy in an air-tight plastic bag, and they look really cute too.  Easy wash and stash for your next shopping trip, they are the perfect thing for veggie lovers.

Clean Sypria Wool Dryer Balls by Tara Fletcher-Gibbs on Etsy.

Want to replace your fabric softener and have some fun at the same time? Pick up a handful, a half dozen, or more of these fabulous all natural wool dryer balls. They average about the size of a tennis ball, and can be found in colored or natural tones.  They are safe for handling around the kids, and can be scented with natural oils to impart a yummy scent to your laundry loads.

Moss Creek Wool Works Wool Dryer Balls on Etsy.

They actually do more than just soften your clothes, they draw in moisture to speed your drying process, therefore reducing the amount of energy you use per load. Reducing static naturally, they contain no harsh chemicals, and are safe for your household pets to play with should one roll away. They are especially perfect for drying cloth diapers, and can even do double duty for play when teaching your toddler about colors.

Sew Much Style Reusable Eco Friendly Bowl Covers on Etsy.

My final kitchen miracle worker is one that is equally stylish and very smart, whether you are baking bread or storing leftovers.  Bowl covers have been around for a long time, they usually resembled mini-shower caps, but were still plastic which become greasy and aged poorly over time. When looking for a plastic wrap replacement, or even to foil the aluminum foil trap, using fabric covers is the perfect option. They breath a bit to let out excess gasses and prevent spoilage, but still keep things crisp and fresh.

chez-sucre-chez Bowl & Container Covers Set [Various Sizes & Colors Available] on Etsy.

These are just a few of the great Eco friendly and washable kitchen essentials, and a laundry essential that will save you time, money, and most importantly your conscious when it comes to reducing your environmental impact. They may seem like small things, and maybe they are, but they are just a small part of a bigger trend.  All of these items are produced by hand, made by crafty artisans that believe in their products and are more then happy to work with you to meet your needs. Many will create custom orders just for you, and you can often find very local products made in your own area to reduce your shipping costs too. There is no reason why your kitchen can’t be the center of your new Eco conscious self, just as it it the center of your home.  Fabulously kind and chic items like the ones featured above are not only great for your personal use, but make brilliant gifts for friends and family too. I love finding a reason to blog on Fridays!