Sunday, March 30, 2014

Scrap Management

Guys, I am SO excited about this post!

A few days ago, my good friend Alicia sent me a link she'd found on Facebook for an organization called ZeroLandfill.   Here's how they describe themselves:

"ZeroLandfill™ is an award winning upcycling program held seasonally that supports the supply needs of local artists and arts educators while reducing pressure on local landfill capacity."

The link Alicia sent me was about a collection drive put on by the Chicago branch, coming up in April.   We've both been working on de-cluttering, so she thought I'd be interested.

And was I ever!  Although I'm getting ready to leave town, I wanted to make sure I had things ready to take to the drive when I get back.  So I spent all of yesterday morning going through my two huge fabric scrap tubs and pulling out everything acceptable in the drive - pieces as small as 2" x 2" are taken, of all kinds of non-hazardous materials.  I filled four large shopping bags with fabric scraps and managed to totally free up one of my tubs!

With my shoes for scale!  These are the BIG bags!

The reason this is so exciting for me is that fabric scraps make up a large part of my fabric "stash."  That's because I only throw away the smallest, unusable pieces.  And that's because I don't want to clutter up landfills with this stuff.  I tried to find some recycling options for fabric scraps about a year ago, but came up empty-handed.  So I've just been holding on to this stuff, hoping that some day I'd figure out a way to use it, pass it on to someone who would or find an eco-friendly way of disposing of it. 

I know that there are a lot of scrap fabric project ideas out there, but honestly, I don't find it fun to make those things for the most part.  So this organization is a perfect solution for me - and so much the better that the materials are used by artists and in education.   When I was a teacher (back in the day) I used to take all my leftovers to my classroom for the kids to use.  But since moving here, I don't really have a relationship with any school so I haven't pursued that.

I spent a fair amount of time looking around on the website.  It looks like there are branches in many cities across the US, and even in Toronto!  This link has a map of chapters in existence already, and a contact for starting new chapters.  The link for the Chicago chapter I gave above goes to their Facebook page rather than to a website, so if you want to find the post about the upcoming drive, scroll down to the Feb. 26 post. 

Have any of you ever heard of this organization?  Do you have other resources for disposing of fabric or yarn scraps in a responsible way?  I was really excited to share this with all of you, because I think I may not be the only one with this problem!


15 comments:

  1. that is awesome! i'll check it out. my "stash" is much the same... full of scraps!

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  2. Sounds like a great idea! Which is unfortunately nowhere near me--I tried to look it up, and the closest one is in Pittsburgh. Which is at least an 8-hour drive. Hopefully one of these days...

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    1. I'm considering the possibility of accepting mail-in donations and then taking them to the site with mine in the future. I'm going to see what the deal is when I go there in a few weeks, so that might be an option in the future.

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  3. Such good info! I'm going to look at that link right now!

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  4. This is great! I have been in the same boat and have at least 3 bags full already :) Thanks for posting this!!!

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  5. Thanks so much for sharing! I face the same problem, as do we all, I think, and since we live in a small apartment I've just been trashing anything smaller than what I can get a facing or pockets out of. Which I feel terrible about, but ugh, what to do. Somehow it doesn't look like there's a branch in San Francisco (?) but hopefully there's something similar...

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    1. That's kind of ridiculous! SF always seems to be at the forefront of this kind of thing! I'm betting you will be able to find something similar - or get the SF sewers together to start a branch!

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  6. This organization reminds me of SCRAP. There are lots of materials to buy cheap. One of my knitting groups has found yarn there for unbelievable deals.

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    1. Thanks, Stef - that's a good place for Kelly to start!

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  7. That's awesome! I Freecycle.org, also! A nationwide organization.

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    1. I always forget about Freecycle! Thanks, Stacy!

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  8. What a great idea! It prompts me to be better about saving usable scraps and donating them, instead.

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  9. You've probably been nominated before but still, I nominated you for a Liebster award!

    http://sewcraftychemist.blogspot.com/2014/03/a-liebster-for-me.html

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    1. That's so sweet, Nakisha! Thank you!

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  10. Honestly, I'd just sent an email to Loopy's Place offering her another bag of scraps. It's a great way to clear space and support other artists. It's great to hear of an organisation that makes the whole thing easy for those who don't have a personal connection with a fibre artist. Anything she can't use goes straight in a bag for school...they collect the fabric/clothes and weigh them in for recycling and fundraising for school.

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