Why buy dish cloths and sponges? I recently had a ‘Doh’ moment when I ran out of chux wipes and improvised by cutting up an old tea towel to make 4 dishrags.


I overlocked around the edges to keep things from fraying in the wash. Now i use 2-3 a day and they just get put through the wash when they get soiled or otherwise manky.

On another note, but related given we are talking of reuse, reuse, reuse; We are going ‘old school’ with cloth nappies for Ada. I’m taking the economy route of terry squares, snappis and some modern style pilchers.


Contrary to some amazing claims, cloth nappies will not save me thousands of dollars. I calculate that I’m saving between $9-$11.50 per week and that is based on my preferred, premium brand of disposables. (Ada is in disposables at night)

This works out to be a saving of $500 worth of disposables per year. My set up cost was close to $180* and I choose to not think too hard about laundering costs! All that work for a saving of just over $300/year 🙁

So why am I bothering with cloth? Initially it was because I started to think about all my children’s festering disposables glugging away in the Hobart City Council’s landfill. I never thought about it until I had two kids in nappies – the amount of crap (literally) that I was throwing away became alarming to me.

Then I got excited about the squillions of dollars I could save hahaha.

Then I thought I’d just dip my toe in the water and see how I went with it. I’ve discovered that Ada’s bum is fresher and less rashy in cloth. I’ve discovered that a line full of white terry squares makes me happy and that I enjoy the rhythm of folding a pile of nappies. And I am saving $300 a year 🙂

However, I dislike disposing of poo in the toilet. Ada’s are pretty solid right now so they are fairly easy to deal with. If I was using cloth with Jasper I wonder if I’d have the stomach for it as his poo is soft and big and goes everywhere – not to mention the smell… I feel sick even thinking of it.

Overall, I do like the idea of using and reusing the same bit of cloth and I’m happy to reduce the amount of crap I’m chucking into our local landfill. And finally, in these austere times of one wage, two children and a fresh, large mortgage, $300 is a nice saving really 🙂

*set up costs
12 terry flats = $0 already had some
12 terry flats = $45 (you can get cheaper ones but watch for quality we returned some cheap ones to Target because they had holes(!) and were thin)
2m of bamboo and hemp fleece for some DIY nappies and boosters =$45
Pilchers = $60 (I have 4 at an average of $15 each)
Snappies= $5 (broken) $7.5(replacement from expensive baby shop)
Nappy bin = $20 (Chris bought it so I’m not sure of the cost, it’s a flip top kitchen bin from bunnings)

Total $182.5 or thereabouts

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3 Responses to Rags

  1. meg says:

    Hello. Im all for washing the dish clothes. Sometime I pick up a chucks at someone elses house and it stinks so much that I refuse to wipe with it. I just can’t believe that people out there ‘clean’ with something that has been hanging around wet for week and smells like rotten feet.
    PS eat you silverbeet! It don’t get much better than that lady. Maybe a spinach n feta pie… or use it as a wrap for meat balls… or just boil it for a hour or two until it turns to pond scum =D

    • Claire says:

      We do eat the silverbeet! Amazing I know :-O I even have it in smoothies if I feel the need for a bit of green hehehe

      • meg says:

        hey since your washing anyway, you could save even more money by making some home made bum wipes too =) An old sheet or thin towels work best, even old PJ’s

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