17 easy ways to upcycle worn out sweaters

January 7, 2019 by  
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Wardrobe upcycling is nothing new. After all, when you think about it, clothing is made from cloth. Lots of other things are made from cloth. So when your clothes have served their functional purpose as attire, why not use that material for other things? Sweaters are a great example of apparel that can be given new life in a variety of ways. From leg warmers to satchels, the pieces and parts of your old sweater will serve a new purpose. If you’re onboard with refusing to trash that old sweater but don’t know what to do with it, here are some ideas to get the juices flowing. Let us know what you come up with too! Doll clothing If you have a little person in your home, you’ve likely got baby dolls or Barbies around too. It’s always fun to mix up wardrobes, even for the toys, so drag out the sewing machine and make sweaters for your kid’s pals. Sweater boots Yes, you read that right and you know they sound cozy. Sweater boots are actually just a cover for your shoes. Cut off the sleeves of your less-than-favored sweater and attach them to the sides of your shoe for an existing sole and an entirely new style. Roll over the top and add a button for a trendy appeal. Pet clothing Just because your sweater started out as human attire doesn’t mean Fido will take offense. After all, dogs get cold too. So make a few adjustments and let your discarded sweater bring warmth to the four-legged members of your home. Wine bags and gift wrap Along with brown paper, fabric has long been an ideal choice for gift wrap. It adds depth and character, plus it can be reused endless times. Wrap a square box with fabric and hand sew it together at the seam or add a fabric bow to the top. Use the sleeve or other scrap fabric to make a wine or liquor bag for a unique and cozy look to your gift. Throw pillows The bed and couch can always benefit from a facelift. Considering the amount of time you spend in, on or near both, creating new throw pillows makes perfect sense. Simply recover an old pillow with your sweater material. If you want to design a throw pillow from scratch, lay out the pattern to accentuate hems, necklines, and buttons on your finished product. Related: HOW TO: Recycle a sweater into a cuddly pillow for your couch Throw rug Following the theme of a quilt, put together a patchwork area rug for the pets, the kids’ rooms or the kitchen. Stuffed animals Some of the most adorable stuffed animals are homemade, and old sweater material offers a lovely, cozy and rustic feel. You could create a patchwork design on larger animals or use one solid piece of sweater fabric for the body of your stuffed bear, dog or monkey. Kids pants While you’re decking out the dog and the dolls, you might as well give the kiddos some winter pants too. Imagine the adorableness of tiny legs wrapped in the warmth of sweater sleeves and your design is already half-way done. Gloves, hat and scarf Sweaters represent warmth so why not carry that theme through to its second life. Use the different sections of your sweater to create fingerless gloves that could be long or short. Then make a matching scarf in the traditional long rectangular design, turn it into an infinity scarf, or even braid sweater lengths for a unique spin. A beanie hat made from the same material will pull the entire look together. Drawstring bag When you purchased your sweater many moons ago, it was likely because you liked the pattern. Keep that happiness in your life by turning it into a multi-use drawstring bag. Turn your sweater upside down and create grommets holes throughout the bottom band. This becomes the top of your bag while the rest of the sweater body forms the bag portion. Quilt The tradition of quilting goes back hundreds of years as a way to turn discarded fabric scraps into something useful. Today, sweaters can serve that purpose well. Simply collect squares of sweater fabric and layout the design you want. After sewing all the squares together, add a backing and enjoy the warmth of those old sweaters for many additional years. Hand warmers and satchels Even the smallest scraps can be put to use when upcycling your old sweaters. Sew two squares together and stuff them with lavender and/or essential oils for a lovely drawer satchel. You can make useful hand warmers in a similar way and fill them with rice. These can be heated in the microwave time after useful time. Related: Everlane introduces long-lasting outerwear made from recycled water bottles Coffee, plant or teapot cosy Sweaters are cozy and that’s the reason they make a perfect cosy. You’re probably familiar with the mainstream foam cozies sold to keep your soda cold, but what about keeping things warm? Wrapping your coffee cup in wool is a sure way to keep the heat in longer. Use a sweater sleeve to make a coffee sleeve. Embellish however you please. You can use the same idea to make cozies for your flower pots or even your teapot. Let your imagination soar! Tissue box cover Yes, these are still a thing. After all, who wouldn’t rather look at a sweater print than the mass-printed cardboard boxes that your tissue comes in? Socks or leg warmers Socks from sweaters? Yes! Warm your cold feet this winter with your favorite old sweaters. Once again, recycling sweater sleeves makes it easy to add a button and turn them into leg warmers (they’re back in style you know) or those adorable boot socks that also protect your leggings from the rough top edges of your boots. Hot pads Your kitchen benefits from the color and print, while your hands benefit from the protection. Cut squares and finish the edges or make a handmit. Either way, make sure your fabric is thick enough to protect you from burns. Headband Turn your favorite old sweater into your new favorite headband or hair scrunchy with a little creativity and some elastic. Via Apartment Therapy , Treehugger Images via Shutterstock

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17 easy ways to upcycle worn out sweaters

Zoos May Be a Surprising Link to Species Preservation and Climate Stabilization

January 1, 2019 by  
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Please consider donating to Health In Harmony to support their … The post Zoos May Be a Surprising Link to Species Preservation and Climate Stabilization appeared first on Earth911.com.

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Zoos May Be a Surprising Link to Species Preservation and Climate Stabilization

Green Giving: 5 Nonprofits Clobbering Climate Change

December 14, 2018 by  
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Thinking about year-end donations to nonprofits focused on issues related … The post Green Giving: 5 Nonprofits Clobbering Climate Change appeared first on Earth911.com.

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Green Giving: 5 Nonprofits Clobbering Climate Change

Futuristic eco-city powered with renewable energy is unveiled for the Maldives

December 7, 2018 by  
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Beijing and New York-based design studio CAA Architects has placed first in the “Maldives Airport, Economic Zone Development” competition with their design of a futuristic, energy-producing eco-city on the east coast of the reclaimed island Hulhumalé, Maldives . Named Ocean’s Heaven after its nature-inspired design connecting the ocean with the city, the project features striking, sinuous buildings covered in green roofs and solar panels and will be capable of producing almost all of its own energy on-site. Commissioned by the Beijing Urban Construction Group Co. in partnership with the Maldives central government, the eco-city is yet another example of China’s increasing influence over the archipelago country. Global warming and rising sea levels are serious concerns for the Maldives, a tropical paradise famed for its pristine beaches and aquamarine waters. In response to the climate change threats and to celebrate the island country’s natural beauty, CAA Architects crafted Ocean’s Heaven with organically inspired buildings integrated with energy-producing systems to reduce reliance on fossil fuels. The mixed-use development will cover nearly two-thirds of the 100,000-square-meter site and include residences, an airport company service center, international trade center, convention center, island transport hub, shopping centers, a business hotel, dining, along with a centralized cultural center that will serve as the island’s “nervous system”. Ocean’s Heaven will promote high-density urban living and public transportation that includes both surface and water commuting. Ample green space, including sky gardens, will strengthen the community’s ties with nature. Related: This stunning underwater art museum is now open in the Maldives In addition to the solar photovoltaic arrays mounted on the buildings and the sculptural canopy elements along the boardwalk, Ocean’s Heaven will also draw power from tidal waves to generate over 70 percent of the electricity needed to power the development. Rainwater harvesting and passive cross ventilation are also woven into the design. The project, which will be carried out in two phases, is slated for completion in 2021. + CAA Architects Via ArchDaily Images via CAA Architects

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Futuristic eco-city powered with renewable energy is unveiled for the Maldives

A guide to the best eco-friendly holiday gifts for foodies

December 7, 2018 by  
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Food is an important aspect of our daily lives, but many of the treats we love are wrapped in single-use plastics or come from pesticide-ridden conventional farms . This year, show the foodies in your life how much you care with sustainable gifts that improve their cooking skills and make the planet a better place to live. Stainless steel straws After reviewing several types of reusable straws, we fell in love with the stainless steel variety. As the war on plastic straws wages on, give everyone you know a pack of stainless steel straws to keep on them anywhere they go. Related: Plastic straws are a thing of the past, but which reusable straw is the best for the future? Yogurt maker Many people love yogurt, but the individually packaged options on the market only contribute to the global waste crisis. Instead, create your own flavor combinations in reusable glass jars using this handy yogurt maker . Make yogurt-making part of your weekly routine, and you’ll see it is as easy as “set it and forget it.” Stasher bags Although quite wasteful, you have to admit that plastic, resealable baggies are incredibly handy for storing extra food and other miscellaneous items. Luckily, Stasher has taken this idea and made it even more useful and sustainable. These reusable , resealable bags are made with BPA-free silicone and can be boiled, frozen, baked in the oven, microwaved and more. They last much longer than their single-use counterparts, but when they reach the end of their life, Stasher will recycle them into playground pebbles. Beeswax food wrap Avid cooks and bakers can find many uses for plastic wrap, but unfortunately, it is a single-use item that goes straight to the landfill. Gift your favorite foodies these reusable food wraps made using beeswax. These are a natural, zero-waste alternative to plastic wrap, and they come in an adorable pattern for wrapping sandwiches, leftover produce, cheeses and more. Reusable water bottles If you’re friends or family still haven’t converted to carrying reusable water bottles over plastic, it’s time to make the change. With a wide variety of colors and patterns, these S’well bottles make a great gift for everyone on your list. CSA subscriptions For the most serious foodies, nothing is better than cooking with fresh, local produce . Get in touch with farmers in your gift recipient’s area to set up a CSA subscription, which will deliver fresh fruits and vegetables to your loved one’s door. Start your search here . Fair trade chocolate Chocolate always makes a great gift, but make sure your present is being harvested ethically and sustainably. Check out some of these brands to add to stockings this year. Metal tea strainer A hot cup of tea soothes the soul… or at least warms you up during these cold, chilly days. Put together a cute and functional gift for every foodie you know with a mug, some local and organic tea (packaged sustainably, of course!) and one of these metal tea strainers , which eliminate the need for single-use tea packets. Images via Amazon ,  Stasher , Abeego , S’well , Jill Wellington , Nawalescape , Drew Coffman , Pexels and Shutterstock

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A guide to the best eco-friendly holiday gifts for foodies

Patagonia donates its $10 million in tax cuts to save the planet

December 4, 2018 by  
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Last year, President Trump said that his tax bill would be an incredible Christmas gift for millions of hard-working Americans, but it also resulted in billions of dollars of tax savings for businesses — especially those in the oil and gas industry. But one outdoor retailer has opted to donate its tax savings to the planet instead of putting it back into the business. Patagonia announced last week that it would be giving away the $10 million the company made as a result of the Republican tax cut. “Based on last year’s irresponsible tax cut, Patagonia will owe less in taxes this year — $10 million less, in fact. Instead of putting the money back into our business, we’re responding by putting $10 million back into the planet,” CEO Rose Marcario wrote in a LinkedIn blog post . “Our home planet needs it more than we do.” Related: Patagonia strikes back at Trump over public lands policies Marcario also wrote that taxes protect the most vulnerable in our society as well as our public lands and other resources. In spite of this, President Trump still initiated a corporate tax cut that threatens those services at the expense of the planet. In addition to cutting taxes for individuals and businesses, the bill also lifted a 40-year ban on drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. Patagonia will donate the money from its tax cut to various conservation organizations. The money will also go toward the regenerative organic agriculture movement, which, according to the company, could help slow or reverse the climate crisis. Marcario cited the recent National Climate Assessment Report, compiled by 13 different federal agencies and 300 scientists. The report found that climate change is impacting people all over the globe and will cost the U.S. economy hundreds of billions of dollars. She wrote that far too many people have suffered from the consequences of global warming, and the political response has been “woefully inadequate.” Patagonia has been a long-time champion of grassroots environmental efforts, and the company has also been vocal in its criticisms of the Trump administration. + Patagonia Via EcoWatch Images via Yukiko Matsuoka and Monica Volpin  

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Patagonia donates its $10 million in tax cuts to save the planet

Striking home in Greece uses bioclimatic features to be energy-efficient year-round

December 4, 2018 by  
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Tucked into a sloping hillside looking out over the Aegean Sea, the TRIF House designed by Sergey Fedotov boasts a gorgeous, contemporary design with massive floor-to-ceiling windows to take in the breathtaking sea views. In addition to its striking aesthetic, the private residence also includes a number of passive features that insulate the home and reduce energy use throughout the year. Located in Porto Heli, Greece, the massive home, which spans over 3,800 square feet, sits on a naturally sloped landscape spotted with olive trees. To appreciate the gorgeous sea views, the front facade is a series of frameless, floor-to-ceiling windows that can slide open and shut at just the push of a button. The glazed exterior not only creates a seamless connection between indoors and out but also allows for natural sunlight to illuminate the interior. Related: A modern, energy-efficient home is built around a beloved madrone tree Alternatively, the home’s north facade was embedded into the natural slope of the hillside. Burying part of the house into the landscape was another passive feature that helps provide the structure with a strong thermal envelope. The main floor houses a kitchen, dining and living room, all of which open up to an expansive veranda with a swimming pool. The top floor, which is enclosed in a large white rectangular volume that cantilevers just slightly over the ground floor, is home to the master bedroom and two guest rooms, all of which enjoy stunning panoramic views. The interior boasts a minimalist design with custom-made furniture. Surrounding the home, the landscape was left in a natural state. Large olive trees and shrubs dot the sloping hillside, which has various walking paths that wind through the home’s beautiful surroundings. + Sergey Fedotov Via Archdaily Photography by Pygmalion Karatzas via Sergey Fedotov

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Striking home in Greece uses bioclimatic features to be energy-efficient year-round

3 Ways to Help Your City Recycle Better

November 27, 2018 by  
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Recent news about the climate and the state of the … The post 3 Ways to Help Your City Recycle Better appeared first on Earth911.com.

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3 Ways to Help Your City Recycle Better

Earth911 Quiz #38: Climate Change Quotes In The News

November 21, 2018 by  
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Five quotes from recent climate news coverage. Do you know … The post Earth911 Quiz #38: Climate Change Quotes In The News appeared first on Earth911.com.

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Earth911 Quiz #38: Climate Change Quotes In The News

Episode 149: ‘Thoughtful’ carbon policy, Home Depot thinks circular, Royal Caribbean floats new energy strategy

November 16, 2018 by  
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Plus, what’s the difference between energy efficiency and energy productivity? The Climate Group recharges its EP100 campaign.

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Episode 149: ‘Thoughtful’ carbon policy, Home Depot thinks circular, Royal Caribbean floats new energy strategy

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