Category Archives: Storage

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!

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The Curious Curiosity Box – Strange Stuff Saturdays

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Altered Art Tall Taper Handmade Box
by Patricia Hecker, Tattoo Dreams on Etsy

 Everybody needs somewhere to put all those little bits and bobs that manage to accumulate throughout the days, weeks, and months. You know the things I mean; concert ticket stubs, interesting coins, pebbles, bits of beach glass, marbles, buttons, broken jewelry, little handwritten notes, and other tiny treasures. The fact is, tossing them into a kitchen drawer or a bedside table means they are out of our sight and eventually out of our thoughts. Some items are too special to seal up in a plastic bag or shoe box, and sometimes things just get shuffled into the wrong pile and thrown away.

Wooden Trinket Box With Skeletal Hand
by The Curi-Oddity Shop on Etsy.

 Today’s Strange Stuff is also practical, all these “Altered Art” Boxes are not only strange and wonderful to look at, but a special place to hold all your own strange and wonderful things. All created by different hands, they would definitely stand out on a coffee table, dresser top, or desk.  Not only will you have somewhere to put all those small things, but it might help you edit your existing stash down to just the most special things that will fit into your new box of curiosities.

Box Altered Art Handmade With Secret Compartment OOAK
by Petrina Case, Petrina Case Studio on Etsy.

 Some of these are way out there, it is the day for strange and odd items after all, but the idea still holds.  There are many wonderful storage boxes and Altered Art boxes on Etsy, and they range in size from tiny Altoids Tins to an entire chests of drawers. You can find something to fit every taste and style, from contemporary to shabby chic, but I particularly like the odd little boxes in today’s post.

Piano Keys That Hold Treasures
by Doug Sorenson, Traveling Inkwell on Etsy.

 Does everyone collect the little bits of things they come across? I know it’s not just me, but some people don’t have the sort of sentimental connection to objects that others do. I am by no means a hoarder of everything I find in my travels, but I do like to hold on to things that have special meaning. What do you hold onto and what are your most treasured objects? Do they have a fitting place to stay? If not then you need to start thinking about where they belong, and how you can keep them safe and still enjoy looking through them every now and again. As a girl I would visit with my grandmother, and we would sit at her amazing vintage wooden vanity with it’s huge mirror, and go through the one drawer in the middle where she kept her most wonderful things. The gloves she wore to my parent’s wedding, the beaded handbags she used in her younger days, some fabulous “paste” rhinestone jewelry, and a collection of linen hankies, some with embroidery accents made by herself or her sisters and friends. Such wonderful memories.

Tarot Box, Witch Witchcraft Wiccan Pagan “Dratxx
Pippenwycks Wildwyck Woods on Etsy.

 In my mother’s home, there is a vintage box that is covered in a opalescent blue mother of pearl mosaic, it has a hinged lid, and if you open that lid and peek inside, you will find the most astonishing things. All collected from her yard, there is a monarch butterfly that somehow lost it’s way, a real fuzzy bumble bee that met a similar fate, along with a dragon fly and some other specimens. It sounds a bit macabre perhaps, but when you look closely at these amazingly preserved found “bugs” you get a real appreciation for the awesome beauty of nature.

Decoupage Box Keepsake Trinket Jewelry Storage Box
by Briana Lee, Blissful Treasures – Blushing Peach on Etsy.

 What do I love best about this little box of curiosities? All these tiny corpses were found by my young nieces and nephew as they explored their grandmother’s backyard, and the box sits in my mothers somewhat formal living room, along with all her other prized possessions. Every time the grand-kids see it, they feel compelled to peek inside and revisit those amazing creatures, and remember who found which one. I can only imagine the surprised looks of her contemporaries as they come over to have a luncheon or card night, and open this lovely little box and find, well, dead insects. Only those with a true appreciation for the precious and delicate creatures of this world will understand why they belong exactly where they are.

Vintage Altered Cigar Box – Let The Games Begin
by Kelly B., Kelly Bee’s Place on Etsy.

 Treasure the little things and place them in a fitting home, it is a wonderful tribute to the memories they trigger. Your children or grandchildren will treasure them all the more if you spend a little time sharing your collection with them, telling them about the items and where they came from.  You will smile every time you see your box of curiosities, and seeing the box alone will begin to remind you of what is inside.  It will be even more fun if your box is one of these strange and wonderful finds from Etsy.

“Rare” Raw Meat Jewelry Box OOAK
by Amarynth, Dead and Undead Horror Couture on Etsy.

NOTE: All artwork, products, and images in this post are the intellectual property and copyright of their respective creators, and the Etsy store indicated in the links under the items.  No infringement is intended.