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Dish Drain Alternative

You know what’s gross? Those plastic drain pan things you put under your dish rack. I feel like every time I move I look at the thing and go “ewww” and toss it, only to buy a new one at the new place. (And yes, I do wipe them down occasionally, but obviously they aren’t actually directing water into the sink, instead they let it pool and form yucky looking substances.) So this time when we moved I tossed it, and said no more.

Instead I cut down some old towels destined for the trash and added a bias tape to the edges. These are the new drain pans. I can just throw them in the wash with my other stuff, and I made two so I can rotate them out if they need to hang to really dry.  Added bonus: they extend to fit my silverware drainer and whatever else doesn’t fit in the rack. Tea towels and thin dish cloths would work just as well (and probably dry quicker– that’s what my mom uses and where I got the idea) but I wanted to recycle something I had instead of buying something new. Last year I  tore all of the other old towels into rag sized pieces and use them instead of paper towels now and always wished I had taken the time to bind the edges so they wouldn’t fray in the wash. But binding these two towels was a pain in the butt, so I’m fine with some raggedy looking rags. 

And I’m happy to report that at this point, the only paper product we use daily is toilet paper (and kleenex. But I’m seriously thinking about making tissues, and wondering if that makes me crazy). Believe it or not, I actually find it easier to use reuseable rags, cloth napkins, cloth pads, etc. I was in Joann’s a few weeks ago buying an EZ hem tool (after some of y’all were raving about it) and this woman in line asked me what I would use it for. I explained to her that it was good for making narrow hems, like on a napkin or sleeve. She gave me this pathetic look and said “Oh, please don’t tell me you’re making your own napkins?” and I told her no, I had already made them, and then went on my way. Whatever floats your boat, I say, but what’s so weird about making your own napkins (ehm, and possibly kleenex?)? Giggle.

  • Nancy

    I'm having some hormone problems and am constantly sweating, so this summer, fed up with the pieces of tissue that attach themselves to my face, I found men's handkerchiefs - the cheaper the better. The one regret was the initialed ones of 100% cotton - pure vanity - but now I'm back to polyester - don't wrinkle as much in the dryer. I'm thinking of using some fabric to make my own - may hem them or may just use pinking shears and see if they unravel. I'm in the market for a folding dish rack and happened on this site through a google - thanks for the info - think I'll save some money and buy the one without a tray - use towels instead!

  • bon

    Great idea on how to remove one of the 'ick factors' from the kitchen. If you use old or white towels and binding you could throw everything in the washer with bleach & soap.

    I try to use old tee shirts for cleaning rags. I bleach them all, and still found hubby wearing one of my 'cleaning rags' once. His excuse? It had a pocket for his cigarettes, lol. I guess I didn't get the clean laundry put away quick enough that day!

    I thought of making matching towels, potholders, apron, etc. out of matching fabric, but first I have to learn how to sew terrycloth fabric, lol!

  • Thank you for such a good idea. I used this idea to make a placemat for our cats' water dish. http://chrisandlorena.blogspot...

  • This is wonderful. I'm trying really hard to cut down our paper and plastic product usage as well. Good for you I say! I've actually been thinking a lot about making tissues too/hankies. I say go for it!

  • This is such a fabulous & simple idea. I whipped one up for my kitchen in all of 10 minutes and am loving it. Thank you!

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