Plastic Free July: Week 1

Now that we’re (a bit more than) one week into July it’s time to take a step back and look at my single-use plastic waste so far.

Plastic Free July 2017 | HedgefairyKeeping a separate bag for my single-use plastics proves to be really useful for the analysis of my plastic use patterns. There are a few things that I simply can’t avoid and some that are so easily avoidable that it’s almost funny that I didn’t up until now.

Most plastic waste in this bag is stuff I shared with others, though, in proportion (which means that we simply cut the packaging in half for my bag). This is something I struggle with so far – you can’t make the people around you follow your goals. I can’t make my boyfriend – who does most of the cooking around here – quit using things packaged in plastic. He has to want this on his own, everything else would be toxic and stressful. I’m not a missionary, and there is nothing more annoying than someone who desperately wants you to change your ways through shaming you into submission, be it by words or passive-agressive silence.

106_2692Plastic Free July 2017 | Hedgefairy

The hard facts for Week 1:

Weight: 150g
Not avoidable: contact lens fluid bottle, medication blister packs
Definitely avoidable: yoghurt container, sweets packaging, bath additive pack
Probably avoidable: misc. food packaging

I’m out camping (read: LARPing) from Wednesday to Sunday this week and I’m sharing food with four others so I really don’t know yet how well this will go plastic-wise. We’ll see.

OOTD: Bramble Leaf Picking

OOTD: Bramble Leaf Picking | HedgefairyWhen I visited my Mum earlier this summer I thought it would be a good opportunity to harvest some bramble leaves and petals for tea. The petals don’t really do anything but they make the tea look so much prettier!
OOTD: Bramble Leaf Picking | HedgefairyI also tried a bramble leave dye but without a decent mordant it would only turn out a very pale (albeit not ugly) yellow.
OOTD: Bramble Leaf Picking | HedgefairyOutfit Rundown:
– shirt/tunic: thrifted
– tank top: thrifted (tag says H&M)
– pants: Levi’s
– shoes: thrifted

Sadly the star hair clip I wore, too, isn’t visible in the pictures. This is the kind of outfit I imagine a modern version of the edge-of-the-village-dwelling, rich-with-knowledge-about-herbs witch woman wearing, and it felt really, really nice to be out there, collecting ingredients. For me it’s also an attempt at very casual Mori – muted colours, sturdy fabric, but still somewhat playful.

Slow Living Aspects – Herbs

Slow LivingToday I sat down and just cut dried rosemary for an hour. We still had it hanging over the kitchen door from my old place, from before we moved here, or maybe I had brought it home from work sometime during winter. I had Rosemary written on my small grocery list for work, for things that I can get there, locally and plastic free and organically grown.
“We still have rosemary, did you know?”, I asked Scoundrel over breakfast and he got the sprigs down for me where I cut the yarn that held them together.

We keep our herbs in old jars with simple painter’s tape labels. I like it this way, it’s simple and it agrees with both of us, our tastes in interior design being quite different at times.
Cutting store-bought and hence plastic-packaged herbs from our grocery lists is something we just took on this week, as one of the first things for Plastic Free July (and hopefully many months to come). We won’t be able to substitute our spices but things like rosemary, basil and thyme are no problem. I get them from the farmer’s market I work at and they are fairly cheap during summer. One bundle goes a long way and makes for half an old pesto jar of dried and cut herbs. They also smell divine and look fantastic when hanging to dry in the kitchen.

106_2675This was so fascinating, by the way! On top is our own, air-dried rosemary and on the bottom is the freeze-dried stuff from the supermarket. It surely holds the colours better but I’m so happy with the rustic appeal of the home-spun version. It feels a bit like living in a cottage, but in the big city. A great combination for me, and sitting down, watching something calming or listening to calming music and cutting and storing my herbs is almost like meditation to me. I can’t wait for our sage plant to grow strong and big so we can harvest it, too.

Do you grow herbs or decorate your kitchen with bundled-up sprigs?


Up for a Challenge: Plastic Free July ’17

It’s almost July and for me (just like October and November) this is a challenge month for me.

Last year I tried to go plastic free in July, felt like I failed miserably came August and felt rather disheartened about attempting zero waste but still being myself too much to give up completely.

Because you know what?

Trying and not being as successful as you wanted to be is still better than not trying at all.

So where is this going this year?

I’m going to try.

I want to have a decent image of what amount of single use plastic I had to throw away over the month. I want to check my progress more thoroughly. I’m not quite sure yet of I’m going to have a waste jar or bag – my problem with this would be packaging of things like fish or dairy that leave residue that can (and probably will) go bad after a while. I could of course clean the packagings before putting them in the jar/bag but that’d strike me as somewhat obsessive for what I want from this challenge. My current idea is to document my single use plastic with pictures instead, maybe once a week? If you happen to have a great solution please let me know in the comments!

What I also want to do is share more of my ideas, tutorials and craft ideas for less waste (because let’s face it, I’ll never arrive at “zero”, and that’s okay). I’m experimenting with a plastic-free (or at least less-plastic) bathroom right now! I hope I’ll manage to write about streamlining your things, too, without sacrificing the things you love or will probably need. No promises, though, I know my scatterbrain.

I hope you’ll accompany me on this journey, either as fellow participants or as casual visitors in the temple of doom sustainability or just as an audience as I try to do my best and not succumb to the temptation of veggie jelly dinos every other day.

So, are you coming?

The Mori Guides (and how they re-kindled my love for the style, kind of)

My Mori Journal | HedgefairyIn my latest 10 Things post I listed a post series from tumblr called More Kei Guides (part 1|part 2|part 3). In part one the author, Tumblr user Baaikha, suggests writing a list full of reasons and inspirations for one’s personal foray into the fashion and lifestyle, and of course I obliged (who doesn’t love filling out questionnaires like this?).

My Mori Journal | HedgefairyThis is what my list looked like – the guide specifically asked for pen and paper instead of electronics. And while I read and thought and wrote I noticed how much I had missed Mori Kei in all it’s variations. I missed the tenderness, the inspiration it brought me, the focused life choices. It made me miss all the sources I drew inspiration from, too, for my coordinates and lifestyle ideas – Anne of Green Gables, the mice of Brambly Hedge, Sarah Kay, among many more.

I had never really fallen out of love with Mori Kei. There were just so many other things occupying my mind and the space where what I inaptly call my “mori senses” used to be. A community full of introverts (with me among them) and a retreat from online life for a while didn’t exactly help, either. My once-passionate love had been reduced to glowing embers, not yet gone, but on their way there.

My Mori Journal | HedgefairyThe Mori Guides managed to fan those embers back into flames. Not a big, roaring (forest, haha) fire but a comfy hearth fire, what would be the balefire of a Boggan freehold in my beloved Changeling: The Dreaming.

Speaking of dreaming, I’m back in reveries about picnics and crochet lace again, reenacting scenes from my favourite children’s classics. But at the same time I dream of untamed adventures, rugged edges and wild storms. All those things are part of nature, of my nature, too. I’m thinking about incorporating my love for punk into my longings for ruffles and plant dye. I’m pondering the accessory choices of mermaids that rob drowned sailors’ graves. There is also the thought of tomboy adventures while still wearing dreamy things. I don’t know yet where this picked-up-again journey will lead me, fashion- and lifestyle-wise. What I do know is that I want to be part of this beautiful community of forest – make that general wilderness, another thing that keeps my thoughts on this busy at the moment – dwellers again, be they satyrs, forest trolls or dryads.

Have you ever found yourself falling back in love with a style (or a lifestyle)? It surely happens to me every once in a while…