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DIY

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Make Your Own DIY Cutlery Wraps

Cutlery Wraps
Pop this DIY cutlery wrap in your handbag to help you avoid using single use disposable cutlery when you eat take out.

This weekend I got my “craft on” and decided to make a couple of these pretty cutlery wraps; one for me and one for the present box.

They are so easy to make and all you need to be able to do is cut and sew straight lines on the sewing machine.

Armed with some bright coloured cotton fabrics, a ruler and pencil, some cotton tape for the tie and a sewing machine and away you go!

To make it easy for you and because I am a visual learner, I created a short video tutorial, but for those of you who prefer to read a step by step, here are the instructions:

INSTRUCTIONS:

  • Cut two rectangles of coordinating fabric 50 x 25cm and place them right sides together.
  • Cut 50cm of tape and fold it in half.  Measure up 25cm on the long side of the rectangle and pin the tape so that the bulk of it is inside the rectangle parcel but the fold peaks out just enough be caught when sewing the side seams.
  • Pin around the edges and then sew a 1cm seam around the two long sides and one of the short sides.
  • Trim corners and turn the whole thing right side out pushing out the corners with the end of your scissors so that they are pointed.
  • Iron it flat and tuck in 1cm on the open end in order for you to sew it closed.
  • Sew a half centimetre around all four sides of the rectangle.  Fold up one short side 11cm and pin.  Sew the 11cm along both sides of the same edge at the half centimetre mark to create one large pocket.
  • Mark 4 x 3cm pockets from the left side (the fifth large pocket will hold your napkin). Sew along the lines to create your pockets for cutlery etc.
  • Depending on your cotton tape you may need to fold up and sew a half centimetre hem to stop the ends from fraying.
  • Place your cutlery, drinking straw, and napkin in the pockets, roll up and go!

If you make one for yourself please give me a shout out, and be proud that you are helping to alleviate some of the load single use disposable plastics have on our environment.

Love

Julia

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Whip It Good! Body butter that is…

Bathrooms are a scary place, they seem to accumulate plastic packed lotions and potions, cellophane wrapped cosmetics and tubes and tubs of tinctures and treatments.  As you have probably heard me say before… “before I knew better” as a family we collected all those little single use guest giveaways, body products, plastic combs, toothbrushes and shower caps, mending kits, shoe wipes and even sanitary bags.  Ashamed I am.  So now I am on the band wagon of mitigating our waste I have accumulated recipes instead of freebies, replacing chemical laden creams with coconut, sweet almond, and essential oil bottles, boxes of bicarb, bamboo toothbrushes and home made cotton makeup remover pads.

You are probably wondering what the benefits are of creating your own DIY Cosmetics?  Apart from the cost saving, these homemade solutions contain no harmful chemicals and can be fragranced to suit the individual, I even dare to say that MY DIY natural deodorant is the BEST one I have ever come across.

Always on the look out for a new product to make that replaces it’s plastic packaged alternative, I stumbled across this recipe for Whipped Body Butter and thought I would give it a go.  If you are having trouble finding shae butter or cocoa butter check out your local health food store or go to Australian Wholesales Oils website.

WHIPPED BODY BUTTER

Only four ingredients go into making this rich body butter you can make right in your own kitchen.
Body butter ingredients

Ingredients – in equal quantities (I used half a cup)

  • Shae Butter
  • Cocoa Butter
  • Sweet Almond Oil
  • Coconut Oil

Melt over a double boiler.

Place in the refrigerator to harden for about 1 hour.

Beat with electric mixer, scraping down the sides as you go, until it resembles whipped cream.

Add five to 10 drops of your favourite essential oil and mix well.

Scoop into bottles and store.

Take a look at the video for instructions and explanation as to the benefits of the essential ingredients. Let me know what you think!

Five Ways to Celebrate Mother’s Day that won’t cost Mother Earth.

Being a Mum I am looking forward to Mother’s Day on the second Sunday in May.  I tend to think that the real Mother’s Day is actually the birthday of my one and only child as this is the day I truly became a mum, but then we can’t distract from the special day of the birthday boy to make it all about ME now, can we?

 

We tend to get caught up in the consumerism of Mother’s Day and I recognise that I have been known to rush off on the Saturday and buy the thing we think our Mums will love rather than thinking about the sentiment.  This year it is my intention not only to think about the sentiment behind Mother’s Day but also to consider Mother Earth and the impact of our purchases on the environment.

 

I’ve put together this little list of five things you can do to celebrate your Mum but that won’t cost Mother Earth and I hope it inspires you to follow suit and think twice before your purchase mass produced, over packaged goods with no sentiment attached.

 

  1. Zero Waste Gifts – Remember when you were little and at school there was a Mother’s Day stall.  Dad would give you a few dollars (or even cents in my day) and you would file past all the doily covered toilet rolls, some granny’s lovingly crocheted coat hangers, potted plants and handmade bookmarks and would select things that you were sure your mum would absolutely love.  Handmade gifts never go out of style and generally have no packaging associated with them.
    Weekend markets are particularly great places to go to source packaging free gifts but even better to use your own skills and make something with love.  How about this year you cook a batch of scones or one of my favourites – Banana Bread from the book “Sweet Treats” from the Sugar Free Teen (available on Amazon for $5.59 http://www.amazon.com.au/Sweet-Treats-Kalila-Purtle-ebook/dp/B0184REESE ), wrap up in a cotton tea towel and pop into a basket.  This will give Mum three presents in one and she will appreciate the effort that you have gone to by making the gift yourself.  IMG_8998
  2. My mum particularly likes lovely, fragrant soaps for the bathroom and so this year (spoiler alert Mum) I am going to buy her some Wash Rocks from www.aromabals.com.au.  These soap free alternatives to soap are made with a combination of Australian and French mineral clays, essential oils that smell divine and some other natural ingredients to form a washing bar that lathers perfectly and is gentle enough to use on your face, body and even your hair!  Leeanne in Western Australia handmakes the rocks and can send them to you anywhere in Australia or overseas.  They come in brown paper bags which can be reused or composted and you can always add a cotton washer, some linen napkins or a scarf to package the rocks and add to the present.
  3. Natural and organic skin care products are always welcome, especially when they are made from all natural ingredients and are organic.  Door of Youth (www.doorofyouth.com) has a great starter range that is on special at the moment for just $49 ($89 value) just for Mother’s Day!  Containing 100% natural and organic ingredients including glycolic made from sugar cane, they gently exfoliate and hydrate the skin without the use of those toxic time bombs – Microbeads.doorofyouth
  4. It’s a time of year when we get together as a family and the siblings come from far and wide to be with Mum.  This calls for a family lunch, usually al fresco amongst the trees and roaming chickens in our back yard.  This year, being that it is also MY mother’s day and I don’t want to do any dishes, I am going to set the table with the contents of my Eco Party Box (www.ecopartybox.com.au ).  I ordered a setting for twenty (we will have left overs for another occasion) and now I have compostable plates, serving trays, cups, serviettes and bamboo cutlery that won’t require me or my guests to spend the end of a relaxing day up to our armpits in dishes.  IMG_8834
  5. Adult colouring books are definitely the flavour of the month and you can either Zen Doodle your own (https://feltmagnet.com/drawing/How-to-Create-a-Great-Zendoodle)  or buy from the local newsagent fairly cheaply.  What better accompanying gift that a box of Sprout Colored Pencils!  Available from www.whodhavethought.com these pencils once they have been used and sharpened to a stub can be planted in a pot, given some water and sunshine and will grow a variety of herbs and flowering plants.  A unique gift that has multiple uses and keeps on giving!11863288_10153170556529611_5476026055136756071_n

 

Well I hope this has given you a couple of different ideas for Mother’s Day this year.  I’m sure your Mum will be delighted to receive any or all of them and you can feel great about putting in some effort, supporting Australian small businesses and leaving a lighter footprint on the Planet.

Love

 

Julia

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NB: All offers and links where  valid at time of posting.

How to make a foot stool, recycling paper and growing Oregano.

Mamma Mia, can’t have a pizza or pasta without this delicious little herb, oregano.  But are you aware that it also controls weeds and the pests that would attack your beans and broccoli and has some amazing health benefits as well.  It’s drought tolerant and a real all rounder so you really should consider growing oregano in your herb garden.

Have you been told to put your feet up recently?  Well, what better place to do that than on a foot stool you made yourself!  I show you how to make a snazzy footstool with left over timber and some offcuts of foam and fabric that will take pride of place in front of your thinking chair.

With Christmas time comes wrapping paper and cards so we look at why we should send all of it to the recycling bin, once the celebration is over.  Did you know in Australia we send 1.9 million tonnes of paper to landfill and only half of our paper used is recycled.  y recycling 1 kg of paper and card we can reduce our green house gas emissions by the equivalent amount!  Reduce, reuse and recycle your paper and cards this Christmas (and every day ending in a Y).

Welcome to Farewell My Manicure TV.  I hope you enjoy the show!

Julia

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It’s Beginning to Look a bit Like Christmas…

With the heat soaring to high 30’s this week, the frangipanis blooming and the little baby mangos starting to appear on the Mango tree, it is clearly looking at bit like Christmas here in South East Queensland.  So with the impending first of December just around the corner (the day we put up our Christmas Tree), I thought I should get started on making some “green” Christmas decorations in the shed.

We all know that the planet is suffering from a plastic environmental disaster, but did you consider that the microscopic pieces of plastic that you use in cleaning products and facial scrubs are contributing to this in an unprecedented way?  Let’s find out why there is a movement in many countries to Ban the Bead (micro-beads that is).

Christmas time is not always a happy time for everyone.  If you are feeling depressed or overwhelmed by the whole occasion find out why getting down and dirty in your garden could be just the tonic for your Summertime blues.

Welcome to Episode Seven of Farewell My Manicure TV.  Don’t forget to LIKE, COMMENT and SHARE if you enjoy the program.

Until next week

Julia

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Episode 7

 

 

 

Nasturtiums, Natural Cleaning, Muffin Wraps and Lemongrass. Episode Six.

EPISODE SIX
WATCH THIS WEEK’S EPISODE OF FAREWELL MY MANICURE TV

In this weeks episode of Farewell My Manicure TV, I point out you the benefits of growing and eating nasturtiums, give lemongrass a speedy haircut, we make some cafe style muffin wraps in the kitchen and clean up with toxin free cleaning products.

Did you know…

  • that just four simple everyday ingredients can clean pretty much everything in your home?
  • there is enough Vitamin C in Nasturtiums to prevent scurvy?
  • with a little ingenuity you can prevent having to wash your muffin tins?
  • lemongrass needs to be pruned back and divided regularly?

Watch this week’s episode of Farewell My Manicure TV and you may learn a thing or two that you didn’t know before.

Enjoy!

Julia

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