Friday, February 28, 2014

Sew for a change - revealing my February Scorecard

The theme for me this month, at least the end of it, has been s h o p p i n g! You didn't see that one coming, huh?! In a week I'm going back to work and I need formal (or at least well fitting) clothes and, despite all the sewing, this is/was a gaping hole in my closet.

I have lots of good clothes waiting for me in a box, I just need to shed the baby fat first. Just to be clear; I am actually not sitting around on my ass waiting for it to happen, no no no,  I have been working out pretty intensely for over 1,5 months. In fact, I've done it nearly every day, even during the holiday! Soooo, I got back from the holiday and happily jumped on the scale.... only to find out that I had GAINED 2 pounds!!!!!!! Darn. (And how is that even possible?!?! I eat well, mind you!) So there was nothing else to do than to get out there and try to fish out a new work wardrobe.

Now, since the points are precious (hear the Gollum voice), I needed to find as much as possible secondhand. I went off on a big thrift shop crawl and scored quite a good bunch of wearable, totally new-looking, items (see the list below). I bet most of these things haven't even been worn!

This is what I found secondhand:

1 crisp white cotton shirt, Boomerang
1 black rayon top with built in silk tank top, Esprit
1 black short sleeved wool cardigan, Sitcoknit (whatever that is...)
1 grey suit vest, Monki
1 flowery tunic, Rosebud
1 pair of black jeans, Replay
1 pair of blue/almost black jeans, Denimbirds

 This is what I didn't find and had to buy new - costing me 21 points (*gulp*):

1 nude rayon tank top, Å
1 black long sleeved wool cardigan, Å
2 pairs of organic stockings, Swedish Stockings
5 pairs of black bamboo socks, Greentex

This is what I've been sewing (I've had NO time this month!):

1 Colette Sorbetto tank top in cotton (haven't shown you yet but will do soon), cost me 0p since it used fabric I already had in stash.


Phew!!! Thank goodness that I managed this month's de-clutter challenge!!

Apart from the stuff already mentioned here and here I have sold a bunch more clothes and given away even more baby things and clothes. I stopped counting after passing the finishing line, but I suspect I have passed this challenge almost twice. Proud!!! Especially since I've been away from home more that half of the month. I really wasn't sure I'd make it until the last few days.

Lessons learned:

  • anything you don't need - give if forward straight away, it takes effort to handle big piles
  • even if you don't think you have anything you don't use - you have plenty, trust me
  • it is a tremendous joy to see that stuff you don't need is valued by someone else, totally worth the effort
  • you can find really good things secondhand. Give it a go if you aren't already convinced!

Now, tell us how you guys did! And if you aren't on board yet, it's not too late. Tomorrow the March challenge is presented and also adjustments in points for any newcomers. Be sure to check it out!!


Friday, February 21, 2014

The first purchases are made

First - I have gotten a new job!! Wohoo!!

I feel very excited as this is a real dream job for me. The job, however, requires smart clothes of which I don't have enough. I plan to make some plain but versatile tops in the next week but what I cannot make myself is stockings and socks.

Since 'Sew for a change' will only allow for very few purchases this year I need to make sure the quality is very high. I have googled a lot, and with a tip from Malin (my Sew for a change companion) I decided to try the Swedish Stockings since they are both organic and recycled and are meant to be very durable too. I got 2 pairs, one black and one nude. They are costing me 7 points in total.

Picture from

I also need new socks badly. I have sweaty feet, so after some research I've decided that bamboo will probably serve me better than wool, which was my other option. I use wool socks for running and that is great, but they can be a little warm sometimes. I bought 5 black pairs of bamboo socks (costing me 5 points) from Greentex. The only thing that bother me is that they were rather cheap, which makes me question the quality... We'll see. I 'only' bought 5 pairs, so I'll test them for a while before I go crazy.

Picture from

So, my spending is now up to 12 points, which will then set me back 2 points if I make this month's challenge and earn 10 points. That's not TOO bad.


Friday, February 14, 2014

"Plastic" cards out of wood!

At the hotel we are at, they have taken a sustainable approach. It shows in every detail, even down to the key cards for the door. 

I had no idea this was even possible, but now that I DO know it disturbes me that these aren't used more frequently! I love the look and feel, don't you?


Sunday, February 9, 2014

Visiting paradise

So we took a flight to a place far, far away. The environmentalist in me screams "bad!". It really is a mixed feelings situation. In some respect whatever I do to be kind to nature fades fades in comparison when the trip to get here is by far the worst thing we could have done. But at the same time - seeing all the beauty in the world is also motivating me to keep trying!

Just because we flew here doesn't mean we shouldn't give a rats ass when it comes to the little things, right? I am determined that I have done enough damage as it is and I don't want to leave this country a load of crap to remember me by. In practice that means we brought the cloth diapers for our baby and a portable potty (so that we don't need a lot of diaps anyway). Some earth friendly detergent to do the washing ourselves. We refill water bottles (the water quality here is great) instead of buying new ones and we choose food in restaurants that is produced locally. That means a diet of fruit, vege, fish and seafood mainly. 

I have dried cloth diapers in worse places... 

Friday, February 7, 2014

Progress on February De-clutter challenge

We actually don't have a lot of things we aren't using in our house, thankfully, but surely we can muster finding SOME things that are better off somewhere else.

Item #7-16: our kitesurfing gear

Sadly kitesurfing is an interest of the past. Since having another baby there is simply no time for this. And to be completely honest - we don't have the physique to handle it anymore either...

The following are now up for sale:
1 kite board
1 kite
1 kite bag
1 global bar
2 waist harnesses
2 watersport helmets (not in photo)
2 wetsuits (not in photo)

Item #17: our spare washing machine

We bought a new washing machine about a year ago because the one we had stopped working. Since then we managed to fix it (it was jammed with a bunch of screws! - always empty your pockets...) and it is now fully functioning again. We will give it to friends who need it.

Item #18: my Odd Molly parka

A couple of years old (2011) and in a size I will probably never be able to wear again. Maybe someone else would like it? I'll try to sell it or else give it to charity.

Item #19: baby car seat, Besafe izi sleep

Outgrown but in excellent condition and can serve a bunch more kids (but NOT in this house, just saying!). Selling.

Item #20: coffee machine, Tassimo

Will not come to use in our home since we already have a similar one that works perfectly fine. Selling.

Well, this is it for now. 71% done on the challenge if everything gets sold... how are you guys doing?


Sunday, February 2, 2014

De-cluttering away...

So, where do you begin?? I have had some big boxes of clothing sitting in the attic for a while now, just because I haven't gotten my lazy arse in gear to sell and/or give them away. "Soon..." is what I
tell my husband when he reminds me ever so often. He hates clutter and even though our house doesn't have a lot of it, he's the kind of person who would go nuts over the smallest thing not being where it's supposed to be. He has offered to take all the clothes to charity many times, but I wouldn't allow it because I wanted to look it through one more time... haha.

Now I am pleased to announce that the day has finally come!! Wohooo!!
I did take the time yesterday to sort it in "keep", "charity", "sell" and "throw" piles. Hardly anything went in the throw pile, thankfully.

6 bags of clothes went to charity yesterday, 2 bags of pregnancy clothes are waiting to get picked up by friends and 2 bags contain items that I think will be worth the effort of selling.

How I will do the counting of this? To count every garment would be too easy - then I would be done with the star challenge already, which would feel like cheating. So I've decided I'll count each bag as an item. That means I have now de-cluttered 6 out of 28 items for the month and have another 4 waiting to get counted.

22 items to go!


If you've missed the "sew for a change" initiative, it's certainly not too late to jump on the bandwagon with us. Reed more here for the general stuff, and here for this months star challenge!

Saturday, February 1, 2014

Star challenge #1 - The DE-CLUTTER month!!!

With consumerism often comes hoarding. Stuff you thought you wanted but really didn't, stuff you liked for 2 minutes before you got sick of 'em, stuff that are "nice to have" maybe sometime in the future  (just maybe) etc. You buy but you don't think, to put it simple.

All this stuff tend to clutter up a home. Don't we all have that nightmare cupboard where we're afraid to open the door because stuff may fall out on our heads? And we are too lazy or busy to be bothered and do something about it. Right? Right.

This year we will try to change our ways in all kinds of different areas. Why not start fresh by getting rid of stuff you no longer need (or ever needed)?
BUT, because there is a but; "getting rid of" doesn't mean throwing in the trash. It means selling, giving to charity, remaking into something usable, passing it on to a friend who's in need etc. If something absolutely must be disposed, it should be done responsibly.

This month's challenge is to de-clutter your home 

by 28 items that you no longer need/want. 

One item for each day of the month. An item can be as large or small as you wish, i wouldn't count the screws in a bookshelf as separate items though, but I leave the count to you ;-)

If you manage this, you'll receive a star and 10 points.

Good luck!

PS. We have started a Facebook group that you all can join were we can discuss and inspire each other ever if you aren't running a blog. Welcome!