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Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Broom Making!


I made a broom! Short introduction - my son likes to copy everything I do and sweeping is one of the favorite things for many toddlers. Most commercial brooms are too big, and some are even dangerous (http://www.cpsc.gov/cpscpub/prerel/prhtml07/07309.html - look here for children gardening toys recall due to lead content violations). In addition I am really sick to keep shopping every time I identify a need or desire! I found some "eco-friendly" brooms - those made with appealing materials by some appealing people, with high price tags and which need to be shipped (read - a large UPS truck in our driveway, driving who knows how many extra miles to get here). Or else I can drive to town and spend 3-4 hrs combing large box-stores in search of lead-free (ha!) child-friendly brooms.

So I decided to make a broom. I did not even read anything on the subject, I just looked at an old broom, then I looked out of my window and then I went to work. A lovely little plant called Snake's Broom (Gutierrezia spp.) makes great brooms and brushes (in addition to having many curative properties). HINT: any plant that has word Broom in its name is probably a good candidate for this project.
I harvested a large armful, found a straight stick for the handle, tied the brush following the pattern on my commercial house broom, trimmed the edge and got a lovely new broom. To my surprise, it is very comfortable, sweeps better than my store-bought broom and was ultimately carbon-free in every which way! My little guy lost interest in sweeping though, instantly, upon seeing the broom!

2 comments:

JenProsser said...

Gorgeous, Arina!

I used to use black birch twigs to make "besoms" when we lived in the Catskills.

Happy sweeping!

Eco Bags Al said...

Love to hear about you reusing materials to make an eco friendly broom......I understand what you mean by the price tag on eco friendly products. I find it is in the most commonly used things like shopping bags and plastic bottles when it is worth the extra price because of the extent of the pollution and harm caused by these items. I mean, we can all just reuse bags (and should) we have at home, but companies also need to be offering recycled bags (and hopefully giving incentives) in order to be responsible businesses. I just published a new post about a couple easy changes we can make to get the ball rolling on going green one choice at a time. Check it out if you like: recycled bags