Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Composting on the Cheap

I have adapted this idea to fit the type of container I had on hand.  I would love to say I thought of it myself, but I must give credit to my friend who has the original, full trash can size.

I decided to use these handy totes that have been with me for years working very hard at storing or moving all my junk.  I have two sizes.  The large ones are perfect for the longer term compost, where the smaller one works great for compost immediately from the kitchen.

I drilled half inch size holes in the bottom so the worms would feel welcome.

These dark containers are great for heating things up too, while sitting in the sun.  As I add material to it, I also add a layer of dirt.

I've had the new compost bins in use for a couple of weeks now and have already gone out and turned one in to another, finding the material is breaking down quickly!

I have positioned the two large ones on top of an already rich soil base (so the worms won't have to go far).

While it's not exactly attractive, it really serves the purpose well and I haven't spent a dime!
The lids on these are perfect because they cover the top and remain water resistant.

I am also using these types of containers with holes for grass clipping and mulch material.  I leave the lids off and the water drains out.

What types of containers have you used for composting?

Monday, July 18, 2011

Patchwork Pants

This project took the whole day and was more involved than I originally thought it would be!  But, I was determined to see the creation through as I had visualized it.

I used 6 of my favorite t-shirts that were ready for the rag pile.  Coordinating the colors, I cut out the pieces that made the most use of the fabric.  The hard part was patching the pieces together within the lines of the pattern!  I sewed them first, then cut out the pattern.

In the end I had a pair of casual drawstring pants from my fave shirts!  Even the drawstring is from another pair of pants I wore out.

Upcycling is as much fun as it is environmentally friendly.

Scarf it Up!

My next project was to create a spin off of my favorite infinity scarf, I'm sure you've seen them, a long hoop of fabulous fabric you can wrap around your neck once, twice, or even three times.

My new scarf would be made using a recycled t-shirt from the local thrift store.  I started with an extra large, white, 100% cotton t-shirt.  The best use of the fabric was to cut it in to two pieces about 10 inches wide, by about 24 inches long.  Not as long as I had hoped, but it works out in the end.

I sewed the two ends together, forming a loop.  Washed and dried it to see if the sides would hold up without seams, and yes!  It worked.

Next I dyed it.  My favorite colors are earth tones, so I used the Khaki color Dharma Fiber Reactive dye.

Here is the finished product.  If you can zoom in on the scarf, note how the dye has a marbled effect.  I do this by pouring the dye over the item inside the zip-lock bag and soaking it in its crunched up form.

This scarf is not as long I had hoped, but it can still be folded twice, as in the photo below.  I like how the soft cotton folds nicely and isn't bulky.

You can easily make one of these yourself.  Stay tuned for more!!!

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