Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Eco-Friendly "swiffer" Alternatives

Having 2 dogs, living in the desert and having saltillo tile means I clean my floors a lot. I vaccuum every other day and try to swiffer every other day too just to pick up the dog hair and random dust that always finds its way into my house. But the swiffer pads are terribly expensive and you just throw it away. Also, I always seem to have run out of them when I need them the most. I used the Method brand ones for a while but those are more expensive and you still throw away.  I am tired of just throwing my money away with the dog hair.

So how does EcoGothMom figure out a solution for this problem? Well, left over cotton flannel from making flannel baby wipes (we have just gone to using t-shirt wipes). You can use any kind of left over material but I tend to like the "pickup" ability of the cotton flannel. Just be creative in your endeavor. An old sock that doesn't have a match anymore, worn out yoga pants, pre-fold diapers that you don't use any more, a random and old pillow case or sheets or whatever else you can imagine using.

You can buy a yard of material for about $5 (even less if you find it on sale). This will make about 6 reusable "pads".  Get one of your Swiffer cloths and lay it on your fabric as a pattern. Cut the material about 1/2" to 1" bigger on each side than the Swiffer cloth. Now, fold over your edges and do a straight stitch. You can do a fancier stitch if you feel like it or even surge the edges if you are lucky enough to have a surger. Me? I am cheap and just have a very basic Singer so straight stitch or zig-zag works just fine for me.

Now, attach to your Swiffer and off you go. When it is dirtied up you can rinse all the dog fur off in the sink (i don't like have excessive dog fur in my washing machine) and put the "pad" in the wash. I like to wash all of my cleaning rags together without other clothes just to keep it seperate.

You can also wet these with a cleaning solution (I use water, white distilled vinegar and  a little bit of Method all purpose cleaner) and have a "wet pad" for quick clean ups if you need to when you don't feel like doing a whole deep mopping of the house.

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