How to stop using paper towels

Chuck works on motorcycles, and I’m a kitchen clean freak. We used to go through a shameful amount of paper towels. Like, buy in bulk, hate-the-earth, bulldoze-Costa-Rica amounts.

librarian canvas bagThen my friend Skud gave me a great idea. I cut up a cheap jersey sheet I had kicking around (those things pill up in about 5 washes, FYI) and I sliced up a couple conference t-shirts. We now have a canvas bag full of washcloth-sized fabric squares hanging in the kitchen.

This provides an endless amount of cleaning rags for just about any job.
They are washable, bleachable, and nearly indestructible. You can run them through the wash and re-use them, or if they are gross, just toss them into the compost.

It’s a great way to re-use otherwise disposable fabrics, and they are cheaper and more sturdy than paper towels.

Take that, Brawny!

3 Replies to “How to stop using paper towels”

  1. We do the same with the giant packs of washcloths from Target for 2.99 … I love the T-shirt/sheet idea though!

  2. Probably worth noting that they are only municipally compostable, not home-compostable, and then only if they are 100% cotton or other natural fibre, not polyester.

    If you are squeamish about hygiene, wash them at the hottest possible setting and add (chlorine) bleach.

    The only things I use paper towels for now are oiling my cast iron cookware and draining fat from bacon.

    I picked up this habit from my family, and my dad used to cut up all dead knit fabric or towelling items in this way. Including his Y-front underwear, which he would cut into two rags, front and back. It’s a little disconcerting to get a Y-front rag from the bag!

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