Friday, June 24, 2011

Green Cleaning

Have you heard of the website Pinterest? No?  You are missing out.  It is my #1 favorite new time-wasting website.  I spend more time there than Facebook now.  Shoot me an email or comment below and I'll send you an invite!

If you've never been there, it's like crafty girl porn: visual bookmarking.  Basically, you see something you like on the internet, pin the photo, link it to a "pinboard" on Pinterest and share it with everyone else on Pinterest.  You can "follow" other people/certain pinboards and have all their new pins show up in your newsfeed, like on Facebook.

I have gotten so many great home decor ideas, DIY tutorials, and delicious recipes from this website.  One recurring idea I've seen is various ways to make your home cleaning routine more sustainable and "green."  I decided to embrace this notion and throughout the month of June, I've been looking for ways to reduce the amount of waste and harmful chemicals in our house.

Pinterest came to my aid for the reduction of chemicals with these two tutorials:

Homemade Laundry Detergent: It really works!

This recipe only has 3 (really cheap and all-natural) ingredients and I still have a ton left over of two of them.  If you have a cheese grater, you can make laundry detergent.  I only use about a tablespoonful of detergent at a time and my laundry comes out smelling fresh and clean, naturally!

Household Cleaners:

Here are recipes for 4 different household cleaners: all purpose, antibacterial, grease cutter, and sink/tile cleaner made from all natural ingredients.  They use everyday cleaners like vinegar and baking soda with a couple of essential oils and Castille soap.  I haven't used the sink/tile cleaner yet, but the the other three, especially the all-purpose cleaner are working great!  No more yucky residues in my house!

Now for the knitting portion of this week's post:

I did not find Pinterest as helpful with the reduction of waste because, well, if it's not on Ravelry, it doesn't exist.  We're going to try to use fewer paper towels and clean with reusable, washable materials, like cotton dishcloths!

The following were all knit with Knit Picks new cotton line, Dishie: thick, absorbent cotton that is perfect for cleaning.  And for those who dread knitting with cotton, fear not!  While it's not quite as easy to knit as wool, it's spun super-tight for absorbancy and ease with knitting.  Plus the colors are bright and pretty.

Kitchen Towels by Patricia Lily:

Seed Stitch Dishcloth by Devin Joesting

I have been having great success with all of them.  It makes me feel so much better to toss dirty dishcloths in the washing machine, rather than the trash!  This led me to look for other disposables in our cleaning arsenal:

and Loop Stitch Reusable Duster by Sarah Burton

All of the above patterns are free, easy, and available through Ravelry for those so inclined.  However, this Swiffer Duster patten was the only one that gave me any trouble.  I'd never done loop stitch before (because where else would I use it?) and Ms. Burton's description of it was a little confusing to me.  It seemed like I was supposed to wrap the yarn back up and around my right thumb, which made no sense and nearly caused me to throw my knitting across the room.

It didn't help that she called it "Twised Loop Stitch" because when you Google Youtube tutorials for it, you get a different stitch entirely, one that looks more like this: 

rather than this:

If you search for tutorials on just Loop Stitch, you'll come up with something like this video, which helped me avoid a minor meltdown and figure out this pattern.  Ms. Burton's stitch is only twisted in that she knits into the back of the stitch, rather than twisting the loop around her finger, as in the first picture.

I have tried that duster out on our TV stand, which attracts dust like nothing I've ever seen, and it did a pretty good job.  I might just make another one some day :)

For next time, I'm working very hard on Mel's wedding shawl, but I'm getting up into 500+ stitch count, so I don't foresee finishing that too soon--unless I have a lot of downtime at my cousin's wedding this weekend!  Who knows, I may finally post those crafty pay-it-forward projects that are still sitting in my car (not my fault, I swear!).  

Hope you all are enjoying your first official week of summer!

Also, you should join Pinterest.  Seriously.


1 comment:

vonda said...

I love twisted loop double knit reusable duster, but i do not knot i crochet, i hope to change the pattern so i can use it. Thank you for the pattern.