Tag Archives: Thrifty

Homemade Laundry Detergent

Empty Jars

Laundry Detergent Ingredients

Making Laundry Detergent

Homemade Laundry Detergent

A few years ago, if someone had told me that one day I would make my own laundry detergent I would have thought they were totally insane, but as you know, things change. I’ve changed. And last Sunday afternoon I found myself standing by the stove as the winter sunshine streamed though the kitchen window, stirring a pot full of lux flakes, borax, washing soda and water. Making laundry liquid.

I’d actually been considering this little project ever since I got my hands on Rhonda’s wonderful book last March, but had always managed to put it off. Even though the directions looked simple enough, making my own seemed so much more difficult than just grabbing some detergent at the supermarket. And to be very honest, I don’t think I was ready for that level of, well, hippyishness. I realise now that was silly and I needn’t have put it off. I used this recipe and the whole process was ridiculously quick and easy. I added some lavender oil and the finished liquid smells lovely. We’re still finishing off our last bottle of store bought detergent, so I’m yet to put my homemade stuff to the test, but I’m looking forward to giving it a go!

I didn’t do the sums but according to Rhonda’s math, it costs just $1.75 to make 10L of this laundry liquid, while 10L of a leading Australian laundry detergent would cost around $80. That’s a pretty incredible saving! It’s also really comforting to know we won’t be using anything nasty to wash our clothes. I shudder at the thought of all the chemicals most of us put on our skin and wash down the drain every day. Though there is some debate concerning the healthfulness of borax, in my mind it is a big step up from the string of unpronounceable ingredients in commercial products.

Do you have any great recipes, tips or secrets, for green, chemical free, cleaning? If so, I’d love to hear them!

Katie x

Comments { 40 }

Thrifty Finds

It’s been a little while since we posted about our op-shop finds, so I thought today I’d share some of our most recent treasures. We haven’t done a lot of thrifting lately, but have managed to squeeze in a few op-shop visits and garage sales here and there…

Vintage Tablecloths

I stumbled across a whole stack of vintage tablecloths at a garage sale last weekend. Naturally, I took the lot! I really can’t say no to pretty vintage linens.


I ummed and ahhed about this tea set, but in the end the fact it was complete and only $5 won me over. Because all of our plates and most of our mugs are vintage and have been gathered on our adventures, barely anything in our kitchen matches. Though I love our mismatched, scrappy collection, complete sets are so nice.

Vintage Apron

I rarely think to wear one when I’m actually cooking, but I love vintage aprons. This one with its cute floral print just might be my favourite ever.

Bedside Tables

We haven’t had bedside tables since we lived in Sydney, as our bedroom in Bendigo was too narrow to fit them in. These 70s tables were $25 for the set and they go with our old bed so perfectly. (Oh and look! We’re finally off the floor living room floor and in our bedroom!!)

Granny Blankets

Over the last couple of years we have acquired about eleventy million granny blankets, so I try to practice restraint and be selective about the ones I bring home these days, but I couldn’t resist these two. The colours are so good!

Vintage Serving Tray

Speaking of so good, this incredibly retro serving tray was $2! Yes!

Vintage Sheets

And last but not least, two more vintage sheets for my ever growing collection. The orange one matches the blue sheet from my last thrifty finds post! One day I hope to turn all my lovely old sheets into beautiful quilts… (and some more dresses!)

Have you had any great thrifty finds lately?

Katie x

Comments { 29 }

Valentines Day Thrifty Finds

Reuben had Valentines Day off this year, and rather than spending it working on the house, we treated ourselves to a little day out. We haven’t had much time for fun stuff lately so Valentines Day seemed like an excellent excuse. We drove to Bendigo, had a delicious lunch at Bendigo Corner Store Cafe (again) and spent the afternoon pottering about in our favourite op-shops. That’s pretty much my idea of the perfect day! And happily, our treasure hunting was quite fruitful. Here’s what we found:

Sheridan Pillowcases

I love all vintage linens but have a particular fondness for pillow cases. I love piles of mismatched retro florals on my bed. And these ones are still in the orginal packet! Hurrah!


Speaking of retro, would you look at these curtains!? I bought them to repurpose the fabric, but might even hang the blue ones in our kitchen.

Paper Recycling Kit

Reubs found this paper recycling kit and when he showed me I almost squealed. It’s the exact same kit I had (and loved) as a little girl, and in perfect condition, with all its bits and pieces intact. I’m quite looking forward to making some paper with it!

Vintage Tea Towel

This vintage tea towel is one of my favourite finds in a long, long time. It’s in brand new condition and obviously has never been used. I love those daisies and scallops! I’d like to find somewhere in our new house to hang it up.

Vintage Plates

I’ve been trying not to buy more vintage plates as we have accumulated so many, I actually had to donate quite a stack of them when we packed to come stay with my mum, but I couldn’t resist these! They are just so perfectly 70s.

Vintage Sheets

Of course, I couldn’t call it a successful trip without finding some vintage sheets for my collection. I can’t wait to get back into sewing once we’ve moved. I miss it!

Milk Jug

And finally, a little milk jug to match some of my vintage plates. I love when I find something old that matches another I already have at home.

Have you had any good op-shop/thrift store finds lately? I’d love to hear about them!

Katie x

Comments { 26 }

Road Trip Thrifty Finds

While we were away we took every opportunity we had to pop into as many op-shops as possible (of course!) Unfortunately we did a lot of driving in the evenings and on weekends when op-shops were closed, so we passed many we were unable to visit, but we did get to stop at a few and we found a nice collection of treasures. My very favourite find is the little vintage quilt pictured above. I found it in an op-shop in Dorrigo for $3 and could hardly believe my luck! The camera doesn’t really do the prettiness of the vintage fabrics in it justice. It is truly lovely. I am also very chuffed with the set of vintage canisters, the teapot, the vintage sheets, the serving platters and the old craft books we found. Very chuffed indeed!

Have you found any thrifty treasures lately? I so enjoy hearing about people’s finds!

Katie x

Comments { 27 }

A Little Striped Dress

You know when you have a million things to do but you don’t want to do any of them, so instead you do something else entirely? Yeah, last Friday I did that. (I told you I am the queen of procrastinating!) Reuben had a work function that evening and though I should have been packing for our move, I stayed up til 2am sewing myself a new dress. Logical, no?

Like the pink floral frock I made (and a couple of others I have made since) it’s loosely based on a pattern from this book but mostly just improvised. Unlike my previous dresses, this version is fully lined. It’s made from two thrifted sheets; a blue, white and lemon stripy one for the outside and a plain white one for the lining. The lace collar was also thrifted. I found a little bundle of these collars in an op-shop a while ago so you can expect to see them popping up on more dresses in the future!

So, now I have a new frock but we still have very few boxes packed. Reubs and I are moving this weekend so for the next little while we are going to be rather busy! This is approximately our 37 trillionth move but it never really gets any easier. Moving just isn’t much fun!

I hope everything is sunshiney in your world? Sending you lots of happy thoughts for the week ahead!

Katie x

PS Looking at these pictures I have realised I really should have ironed the dress before photographing it! Sorry about that…

Comments { 25 }