Tying the Knot in a Meaningful and Memorable Way (Without Losing Our Savings or Sanity)

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Our American Addiction to Convenience

Unfortunately, there's a direct relationship between how good for the environment something is and how much it costs.

For example, if we bought disposable napkins, we would spend a couple of bucks for hundreds of them.

Instead, we're going with cloth napkins. Actually, we're splurging on cloth napkins. We didn't splurge on the photograph stamps I wanted for the invitations or my dress (only $15!) or anything else (except the compostable dinnerware).

But we decided to buy four yards of fabric (bird fabric, since we've got a "Birds of a Feather" theme going on). Our plan is to make 8"x8" napkins. If I've done the calculations correctly, we'll get nearly a hundred out of our four yards. But each yard was close to $10. With shipping, we spent around $50 total.

For napkins!

Oh well. It's worth it. Using cloth napkins (and cloth towels, rags, etc.) is a huge step in the right direction for the environment. Our American addiction to convenience wreaks havoc on the environment. In my mind, paper towels and napkins are completely unnecessary. At home, we use dish towels to dry our hands and old rags to clean up messes (even really gross doggie messes). I haven't had a paper towel or paper napkin in my house for years.

And I'm an extreme case. I don't use paper towels in public restrooms either. I've been letting my hands drip dry for seven years. It really isn't a big deal.

So maybe the cloth wedding napkins will inspire people to start using them at home? Maybe we should give them away at the end of the weekend? (We've already assigned one of our friends to laundry duty.)

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Anonymous said...

How did the napkins hold up in the wash afterwards? I'd be nervous that the edges would fray if they weren't finished/sewn but maybe the pinking shears took care of that?

Sara E. Cotner said...

The edges were okay, not fantastic. They looked beautiful right after I cut them, but then I wanted to wash them one more time before we used them. We had four different fabrics. Three of them held up nicely, but one of them (I'm not sure what the difference was) produced a lot of strings. I just cut them off. We used them for the Welcome Picnic on Friday and then for the reception on Saturday. A friend of ours washed them Saturday morning, and they looked fine for the reception. We still use them now. They are a little fuzzy and frayed, but it's not bad.

It would definitely be better to finish the edges; we just ran out of time and the thought of sewing so many napkins made me want to barf!

Future Mrs. Kot 2010 said...

oooh i love this idea... i WISH i knew how to sew!
We've been wanting to get some at home and this is absolutely amazing for a start (and change of pace!) :)

Unknown said...

I grew up using cloth napkins. My mom just buys them whenever. It was funny because when people came over, they would be really afraid to use the napkins.

Over the years, they probably cost a lot less than paper towels and paper napkins.

I am a fan.

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