Once I realized just how much I could create instead of purchase, the options were mind boggling to me. Instead of asking myself "what can I make?" I now ask "what can't I make?" Instead of turning the house into my own personal department store of randomly selected crafts, I narrowed my focus down to a few basics that I use on a daily basis: pitas, pickles and skirts.
Before starting on my baking on Labor Day, I needed to procure a rolling pin. Instead of heading to William Sonoma, I pointed Beau towards my old dress form stand, which has been sitting in the basement since it was ousted by my new one this past Christmas. Ten minutes later, he emerged wielding my upcycled rolling pin.
Baking looks much scarier than it actually is. I followed the directions prescribed by the very first pita recipe that popped up after I googled "how to make pitas" and was rewarded with fresh, pillowy success. Whole Foods is insane to charge something like $5.00 for a package of them. These cost me less than $0.50 and taste exponentially better.
My pickle budget was also an embarrassing $5.00 a week. Is there anything cheaper that tastes that good with falafel? I don't think so. I haven't progressed to canning yet, which made this item a little harder to replace. That was, until I found Red Fire Farms quickle recipe and promptly reused a few old Claussen jars that were loafing around. Quickles don't require actual canning, so I was able to do without those supplies. They just need to live in the fridge instead of the pantry. Not a huge sacrifice. Pickling cucumbers are at the top of my gardening list next year, which will reduce each batch to pennies a slice.
I wear skirts almost every day and most of them are either showing their ages or er, getting a little tight in the waist. This khaki one is the second skirt to date and by far my favorite. I used Buttericks 5421 again but the similarities end there since this time I had an inkling of what I was doing. Since it's grand unveiling a few weeks ago at my nephew's birthday party, it has already become a staple of my work wardrobe. And at under $10.00 for the entire bolt of cotton fabric at Ikea, it is also, an absolute steal.
I'm happy to think of how much plastic packaging will stay out of landfills from my new ability to make these three little items. I'm also avoiding an array of unseen chemicals, saving oodles of money and not fueling a garment industry that pays its workers an unlivable wage. This is a slippery slope I'm on. What's next? What can't I make?