Just ten years ago, environmentalists and eco-warriors were brushed off and disregarded by mainstream media because our society felt like we had bigger issues than worrying about the health of our environment. Today, Mother Nature has come to our doorstep. There’s no more denying that we have to take care of our beautiful planet just as she does for us!
It’s hard to worry about something that seems so distant…so far-off. But with dwindling resources, microplastics polluting our oceans, and the quality of life decreasing for communities around the globe, it’s all time we do our part—no matter how big or small.
The crafting community is filled with some of the most inventive, imaginative, and resourceful people on this planet! And together, I think we can all make some minor lifestyle tweaks that will make a huge impact. Sure, these tips don’t involve picking up trash from a beach or planting trees in the forest, but imagine what kind of impact we could make if we started making more conscious choices within our home.
It only takes one drop to create a ripple effect. Which of these simple tips will you bring into your crafting space?
Ditch the Plastic
Plastic is a material that was designed to last forever, and that’s precisely what it does. It lives on in our oceans, our water systems, our landfills, and even our food. And while plastic storage bins and containers are excellent tools to help keep your craft space organized, they’re certainly not the most sustainable option!
Have you considered repurposing glass jars, cloth food sacks, metal tins, or silicone containers to help store your supplies? So much of being sustainable is being creative. Learn to use what you have! When it’s time to purchase something new, just give a little thought to how it will affect our environment.
Create A Crafting Crew
It’s always better when we’re together! If you’ve got a gang of friends who love needle felting as much as you do, make a craft night so you can get together to work on your current projects.
Not only will you have the opportunity to gab over your latest designs, but you’ll also be able to share materials! Got a drawer filled with neon wool that you won’t be using any time soon? Perhaps another crafter can use that leftover material. You could create an exchange system or have a free-for-all, but no matter what you decide, you’ll know that nothing will be left for the moths!
Learn to Upcycle
When you’ve needle felted for a couple of years, it’s quite easy for your crafts to consume entire rooms of your home! Of course, not every single design you create is going to be something you want to put out on display. So, what do you do with all of the crafts you no longer want?
Challenge yourself by upcycling old designs and turning them into new creations! Whether you want to take a plain teddy bear and turn him into a ‘grandpa’ teddy bear, fitted with a sweater, boots, and glasses or you want to have your bear dwelling underneath needle felted foliage, the possibilities are endless! Materials don’t go to waste (or end up in our landfills), and you’ll have to flex a new muscle by trying to figure out creative designs for old pieces.
As needle felters, we’re already a few steps ahead of the game because wool is renewable and biodegradable! But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be careful about where you buy your wool. Now more than ever, there is a push in the needle felting community to opt for materials that are locally sourced.
By shopping from a nearby farmer, you have the ability to see how the sheep are treated as well as get a better understanding of the pesticides and chemicals that are being used to process your wool. If we all hold each other accountable, we can help to create safer environments for the animals while supporting our local economy!
Ditch the Foam
Foam felting cushions are low in price and work well as a needle felting surface but consider how many you throw away. Foam needle felting cushions wear out fast causing depressions and weak areas in your work surface and may only last a couple weeks depending on how often you felt.
We have developed a more economical needle felting work surface that will last forever and works even better than foam. The Bear Creek Needle Felting Pillow is made with 100% wool that is locally sourced here in North Dakota.
Now that you have a few ‘green’ tips up your sleeve, are you ready to get to the good stuff? Whether you’re an advanced crafter or have never held a needle before, I’d love to invite you to join the Bear Creek Felting Academy! With a library of video courses, instruction plans, and personal feedback from me, you’ll have everything you need to create the needle felted crafts of your dreams!
Click here to join our growing community!