There is so much information floating around (a bit like all the plastic…) about the massive and complex problem of single plastic use and disposal… to be honest I got a bit overwhelmed and distressed. Watching Blue Planet I found myself so upset that it was immobilising, but then you feel as if nothing you do will help and consequently end up doing nothing.
Of course the reality is that we can ALL do SOMTHING that helps, but they will be small changes to our everyday living, and most of us with families and sleep deprivation and pasta to cook will have to slowly and carefully make our changes bit by bit. What I hope this site tries to show is that this is a totally ok way to go about things – making life long realistic steps in the right direction is great. You are also having an impact you may not even realise by role modelling to your children, neighbours, friends and family. When you make change, and are positive and happy that message gets sent out into the world, and the impact is like a ripple on the pond.
We have created this infographic this morning – to give just 4 quick fixes you can do TODAY to reduce your plastic consumption and use. There are lots more you can try, but let’s just start simple and move on up! I will add another 4 to try tomorrow, and then we all have the weekend to try things out.
I’ve just had the most inspiring meeting with Belle’s Sewing – to run some upcycling/recycling workshops at their beautiful new premises. We fit together in lots of ways, and their recycling and zero waste practices are truly wonderful helping so many organisations along the way – lots more about this to come but my brain is now buzzing with ideas so I had to get them out.
If you need ideas about recycling projects you can follow our pinterest board all about it!
Sort of on our cleaning theme, I was thinking about clearing out the shed (not my precious working shed obviously!), and all the odd pots of paint made me think about redecorating, and about how unlikely it was that we would ever get around to it… and then I randomly met Amy and her families project to recycle paint. Here’s what they do:
I would like to tell you a little about Newlife Paints Ltd (www.newlifepaints.com) you may not have heard of the company. It is a small family run business that has a mad scientist at the helm, he has developed a process that recycles emulsion paint from the excess that everyone has sat in their garage or under the stairs still in its pot waiting to cover up any marks on your painted walls – that is so never going to happen, because by the time you get round to doing that you have decided to change the colour- so take it down to your local recycling centre where they will collect it and send it on to us or one of our licensees. We re-process the old paint by whizzing it up in drums, each colour is done separately and the colours are carefully chosen from the waste to match our lovely colour chart. We test the batch and treat it as necessary to improve it, do a final colour check on it and filter it before filling it off into tins. Any old tins go to be recycled in turn and even the old plastic pots get recycled now.
We have several licensees spread through the country but between us we only recycle about 1000 tons of paint a year since it’s estimated that about 55 Million litres goes to waste each year we have a long way to go! So if anyone wants a business idea here is one – become a licensee. We teach you the (patent pending) process and support you in return for a license fee and royalties
Everyone can help by using recycled paint when you redecorate and by taking your old paint to the waste recycle site. Our reprocessed paint is not smelly and lumpy and brown like old Playdoh but pristine thick emulsion paint with a hard matt finish in a range of 28 beautiful colours. Reborn is priced at £29 for 2.5 litres, but if you order a sample pot from us we will send you £5 off a full sized tin, so you get to test it for free.
Next time you are redecorating, think of us!
Written by Amy from www.epsandamy.co.uk
After a very busy Half Term, this morning everyone was back in their respective learning locations – and I am back in the shed, enjoying planning out the next few weeks for The Frugal Family x
As it’s World Environment Day I thought I’d share this great infographic about how we can all begin to make changes that will have a positive impact on the world around us,
and most importantly for the world we’re leaving our children and grandchildren.
As we come to the end of our Transport theme I found this amazing video about paper cycling hats – it’s like someone has read my mind of eco/safety/recyclable/wonderfulness..
Following on the recycled theme, and seamlessly matching it to the Christmas theme, I came across these beautiful recycled coffee sack Christmas stockings from Fern Cottage Crafts.
Buying gifts that have a recycled element can be done in all sorts of ways. There are lots of homemade ideas for gifts from children, or you may have a piece of jewellery from a relative that would make a great heirloom piece for another family member. Christmas shouldn’t be about the money we spend, but the thought we put in.
We’ve tried a few ways to extend Christmas spirit for more than just one day of present frenzied chaos and eating ourselves into a stupor. We like to wrap all our Christmas books and DVD’s and have them as treats all through December (re-using last years wrapping paper of course, if you wrap them before they go back in the loft with all the odds and bits you have left, or saved from the big day it’s a doddle!). We also like to make Christmas Eve a special day… take a look at Jam Jar Craft Studio for some great recycled paper ideas. Just a thought 😉
Why I chose to use recycled paper? – C&E Designs – Emma Cottam
At C&E Designs we create bespoke paper craft items, ranging from flowers to buttonholes to framed gifts to cards and tags. As a staple we use recycled paper – that is paper that we collect second hand. We hunt through second hand stores, we receive lovely donations and through that we have developed a massive stock of books, maps and sheet music.
Up-cycling this paper and creating something new allows us to bring life back into something that has been used and quite often discarded. We chose to use paper as creating something from almost nothing is a passion and allows our creativity to flow and re-using and up-cycling is important to us as a brand.
In this modern age we quite often throw something away when we are finished with it or when it doesn’t fit a purpose anymore. Recycling and re-using paper can save trees and help to preserve our environment. Whilst I’m not qualified to talk about environmental issues, for us as a business and for me as a person I feel it is important to recycle and re-use.
Using something that once belonged to someone else I often wonder about the journey that that piece of paper, book or map has been on and whom it belonged to. Often the messages at the front of the book, the markings on the sheet music or the circles on the maps show the journey and we like to incorporate this into some of our designs.
One of our favourite types of paper to use is old maps, the older the better! Especially when they have been taped together, are rugged around the edges and have become discoloured with age. These maps show a life well lived and to be able to creatively re-create this into something for someone else makes this an amazing job!
We love having a scrap paper drawer at Frugal HQ. It’s made from all sorts of things – old letters and printer mistakes, a clear out of old paperwork, damaged book pages, unwanted order forms and catalogues… and when it runs out we just let people we know to save their unwanted printouts, especially people that work in colleges and offices.
I particularly love the weird and wonderful array of things the kids create, they are happy for hours at the table with scissors, gluesticks and staplers (under supervision :)) This week Daddy got a new hat, we made some snowflakes for the windows and a few paperchain experiments – however these became the army of zombies that the Tsum Tsum Avengers were fighting so didn’t last long…
Our interest in recycling and creativity means we often come across far more talented people at these things than we are – look out for a GUEST POST tomorrow from the amazing Emma at C & E Designs about why they love to recycle paper – and of course the beautiful and unique things they make.
Just this week we ‘met’ Ekra, another map recycler on Instagram – it’s what all the cool kids do!
Just to prove I’m not the only person banging on about reusing mugs, or using recycled products, here is The Guardian showcasing the argument for coffee shops (you know who I mean…) being more green. However, we can all make an individual difference too, but recycling our cups or taking our own – and yes, this is going to be another photo of my own re-using mug as I love it sooooo much.
Stamps! I was so thrilled to be in touch with these guys on Twitter- I remember sending off used stamps to Blue Peter as a child but had no idea they could still be recycled and raise vital funds.
I would encourage everyone to do this simple thing, I know we use traditional post much less and receive lots of post without stamps on at all but please save what you can ✉️💌📮📦