We are all guilty of recycling plastic bottles and thinking we have done our part. In reality recycling is worthless if we don’t buy products made from recycled materials. One of my favorite recycled craft supplies is Eco-fi Felt from Kunin Group that I used to make a Domo-Kun plush doll for my son. One way you can help close the recycling loop is to use Eco-fi Felt in your next craft project.
Eco-fi Felt (formerly known as Eco-spun) is a polyester felt made from 100% post-consumer recycled plastic bottles. It takes 10 plastic bottles to make 1 pound of Eco-fi fiber. As a frame of reference it takes 17 bottles to make enough fiber for a sweatshirt. When you buy and use Eco-fi Felt you can feel relieved that you kept a bunch of plastic bottles out of the landfill and minimized depletion of natural resources.
Unlike many other eco-friendly fabric and craft items, you don’t have to sacrifice quality, color, or variety with Eco-fi Felt. Say good-bye to blah organic colors; Eco-fi Felt is available in more than 40 colors. The felt is also machine washable, fade-resistant, and will not fray. There is no excuse for using regular polyester felt. Although 100% wool felt is probably still the most eco-friendly choice, Eco-fi Felt is more affordable.
In the Fabulous Fabric series you have already been tipped off that
Hart’s Fabrics carries recycled felt as does Felt-o-rama. It is also widely available at Joanns, Hobby Lobby, and Walmart.
Start closing the loop today with these 3 easy starter projects:
Three Sneaky Bugs shows us how to turn an empty frame into a
Felt Story Board. Repurpose a frame you already have or find one at a thrift store.
Easy felt and cork coasters from Design Sponge. You can find thin cork rolls at most craft stores. Try experimenting with different size hole punches to make unique patterns. Make
Felt Flower Hairpins with Bugs and Fishes by Lupin. These would also be great brooches to adorn your purse, jacket, or to give as a gift.
Now if only you could take 10 plastic bottles into the fabric store and swap them for a pound of felt!
41 CommentsLeave a Reply
The felt I just got at JoAnn Fabrics was made with recycled plastic – not sure if it’s the same brand or not!
The recycled felt at Joann’s is Eco-fi Felt. They carry it by the yard and in smaller craft sizes.
just what I was looking for! i will have check it out. is the dye eco-friendly too?? i hope 😉
Fabulous tip! Thanks.
“Fabrics made from Eco-fi fiber are chemi-
cally and functionally nearly identical to
those made from non-recycled fabrics. The
difference is that Eco-fi fiber is made with-
out depleting the Earth’s natural resources.”
Unfortunately, the extent of the eco-friendliness here is limited to the recycling of plastic bottles into new material. It is still better than buying regular polyester felt.
To learn more about Eco-fi Fiber, here is the brochure:
Man, you’re getting off easy, Jackie. When I posted an ode to this same stuff a couple of months ago in “Wool Comes from Sheep, and I’m Cheap,” one of my commentors called me a Very. Bad. Word.
I’m of the opinion that recycled acrylic felt is way better even than 100% wool felt, unless you’re sure that wool felt did not come from factory farmed sheep.
See why I got called a bad word?
But it’s still plastic right? I personally just don’t like working with acrylic too see through and it fuzzes so easily. I get my 100% wool felt from american felt and craft and they are very picky about the people they buy from and it it’s eco friendly to boot!
Thank you so much for sharing this info! I JUST bought some eco-felt from Felt-O-Rama!!
Now that’s a scary pillow! Nice work.
It’s wonderful to see this recycled felt being promoted so well. Great article!
We had real trouble finding it in the UK when we wanted it, so we started a company selling it. If any other UK crafters are having similar trouble, hopefully we can help out! =)
Who in the world factory-farms sheep? That’s crazy. It’s easier to just let them graze, and probably better for the wool as well.
That said, if you’re really itchy (ha ha) about using wool for the “animal exploitation” angle (yawn–try being a sweatshop worker, *that* is exploitation), you could try sourcing used wool sweaters at thrift shops. There are instructions all over the Internet for felting wool sweaters, and then you can use it in any felt crafts you like.
FYI, wool and alpaca are still unsurpassed for keeping people warm in harsh climates–and remember, synthetic fibers come from petroleum. We’re better off getting more sheep out on the grass and drilling less in the Arctic. It is not like all that oil’s going into automobiles.
But yes, I like Eco-fi. And yep, JoAnn carries it. 🙂
There are a lot of social and environmental issues when it comes to producing pretty much anything, and being flip and condescending is not going to change anyone’s mind. This investigative report goes into the problems with sheep factory farming for the wool industry:
I’m sorry that you find animal cruelty and the environmental issues that surround factory farming such a “yawn.” I do not believe that one problem cancels out the other like you seem to be saying. You could also say “sweatshops? Yawn…try being a child slave in the chocolate industry.”
Great article thank you! Any advice on recycling felt projects *after* their life as a stuffed animal? Would love to keep closing the loop 🙂
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