Got (more) rust? Think vinegar and lemon!

200369716-001Not long ago I shared my little trick for removing rust from metal (our daughter’s Razor scooter had taken the brunt of the cold and dampness in the garage over the winter)…

Now, more annoying rust came-a-callin’… on a piece of brand new clothing! (This is the part where I clenched my teeth and let a few “choice” words fly!)

Well, never fear.  When rust spots seem to pop up out of nowhere, you don’t need to add it to the batch of clothes that have been designated for ‘cleaning duty days’ and ‘yard work sessions’.  You can salvage it with a few simple items:  distilled white vinegar & salt or just a simple lemon.

Here’s how:vinegar

  • Saturate the rust stain with distilled white vinegar and pour on a generous amount of saltRub the salt into the stain…. OR….
  • Squeeze the juice from a lemon onto the stain (bottled juice works too).
  • For both options, the best ‘next step’ is to actually put the garment in the sun (Mother Nature will do her magic) until the garment has dried. If Mother Nature isn’t cooperating, no problem… just let it dry on its own.

lemonzYou might want to repeat the process for super stains but then just launder the garment as usual and VOILA!…

Guess what?… no more rust stains! And guess what else?  No chemicals needed! Fantastic…

… and the flip-flops lived on…

flp flpsI’m a “flip-flop girl”… I LOOOOVE my flip-flops! And most of my friends know about my obsession too.  If it’s above 50 degrees… FLIP-FLOP TIME!!!

It’s needless to say, however, that the lifespan of a flip-flop can be somewhat limited.  They wear out, they break and, well, sometimes they just start looking pathetic.

Want to help those tired, poor flip-flops live on? (Clearly, I also enjoy “saying” flip-flop!…) but sincerely… there is a fabulous use for them after they outlive their original purpose.

From now until May 21, Terracycle has teamed up with Old Navy stores to collect those flip-flops.  Deposit them in the collection bins at any Old Navy location in the U.S. and Terracycle will be turning them into playground materials.

The playgrounds will be given to a few schools and organizations that participate in the Terracycle Brigades too.  My children’s school participates in the Drink Pouch Brigade so hey, who knows… my old flip-flops may just end up being a part of my kids’ playground!ONTC flip

We’re all preparing for summer (anxiously!) and pulling out everything that has been put away for far too long. If your seasonal wardrobe includes some flip-flops that have seen better days, make your way to an Old Navy store before they make their way to the trash…

… beloved flip-flops can live on!

A great gift to give… that gives again!

minespireThe clock is ticking… tick, tick, tick. Yes, I know you can hear it too.

I am always a huge advocate of giving gifts that have a purpose, that don’t fall into that “huge pit” of things that just cause clutter, but actually do serve a cause.  Well, what if I told you there is a gift that is tangible AND serves a purpose?

Let me introduce you to Minespire.  These beautiful earth-inspired tees are truly the gift that give the tangible, but also the gift that gives again!  50% of the net profits from the sale of the tees are donated to organizations that support the environmminespire lgent, and human and animal rights.  Minespire has partnered with Friends of the Earth to offer tees that are made from 100% organic cotton and ethically produced in a fair-wage, non-sweatshop environment.  It’s the perfect combination of giving and giving AGAIN!

You must know someone left on “the list” that will be moved or inspired by the message.

It’s not really abfoe_logoout getting… it should be all about giving, and then giving some more… and with Minespire, you CAN do both!

Simple tip: You don’t need an electric iron… ever.

wtr spray bttlSome people find comfort in ironing… I happen not to be one of those people. But who hasn’t pulled something out of a closet or drawer and thought “okay, if I wear this ‘as is’, someone will think I slept in it!”

Well, electric irons happen to use an extraordinary amount of energy to power, but I have a simple way to never plug-in an electric iron again… all you need is a simple sprayer bottle filled with water.

Depending on the garment or item all you need to do is the following:

  • Place the item on top of a flat surface, mist each side with water, smooth with your hands and give it about 15 minutes to dry. You can also hang the item and do the exact same.  On the fly, I’ve actually done this while WEARING the item!
  • For really stubborn wrinkles, saturate the area with water a bit more than a simple mist, smooth with your hands and give a bit more time to dry… and voila, goodbye wrinkles!
  • (For items that must be dry cleaned, remember these tips, but this will safely work even for dry cleaned items that get some wrinkles!)

Sure, it won’t save the planet, but truly, give it a try… it WILL save energy and you, too, may never plug-in another electric iron again!

Recycling a wardrobe = purge + donate + swap + sell

wrdrobeNow that summer vacation for both of my kids has finally arrived, it’s time to compile that list of “to do’s” that has been taking a backseat to kid’s activities all school year long.

Top of that list?… purging closets and drawers of clothing, shoes and accessories that are causing said closets and drawers to have stress fractures!  Yea… you know the feeling… that moment after finishing all of the laundry when you “attempt” to put everything away and it simply doesn’t fit in the “space” any longer.  Mine have reached that point.

First comes the purge. What is the rule of thumb?… if it hasn’t been worn in two years, face it… you won’t wear it. And if your children have outgrown it, truly… it’s over!  But many times your clothing is in great condition and you know it isn’t yet destine for the rag bag (although if you know it truly isn’t worthy, turning it into a rag IS a great choice for upcycling!).

So what are your choices? More than ever, there are plenty of them:

  • Ebay – everyone knows this one as “the original”… it’s still around and does a great job of buying or selling what you want or only want to get rid of! (*Hint: it’s best to sell in a “lot” of clothes – i.e. six size 4T boy’s outfits)
  • Craig’s List – this is the best way to localize a sale or search of items because you list by community (again, a “lot” works wrdrobe pilebest)
  • Freecycle – this list also centralizes items to specific communities and all items are offered for free, so you know someone who really wants it gets it!
  • Bigwardrobe – this site is brand new to the U.S. (after huge success abroad) and lists many high-end designer items for sale and SWAP.
  • Soles4Souls – this organization accepts donated shoes to distribute to those who simply need shoes.  (Right now there are 14 children’s feet safely covered in Haiti thanks to the generous donation of my own children!)
  • Good ole’ American garage sale – you’ll nearly have to give them away, but if someone wants them, they’ll buy them!
  • DONATE! – there is always a long list of community organizations that serve those in need.  This one is obviously my favorite because I’m not so concerned about making money… I just want to help those who are less fortunate and I find this the most rewarding choice.

Whatever you choose, just make it a choice that keeps valuable clothing and shoes from being tossed away. I know you have plenty to give… so come’on!  Let’s purge!!!