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Guest Curator: Kelly Rand of Crafting a Green World

Mar 18, 2009

by craftingagreenworld handmade and vintage goods

Kelly Rand is a writer for and Crafting a Green World, as well as a compulsive knitter and avid maker. She spends most of her free time pursuing crafty endeavors and volunteering for numerous causes. Her latest upstart, Hello Craft, is pretty awesome (see our posts about it here and get involved!). Kelly believes that handmade will save the world.

Environmentalists can easily be labeled Chicken Little, always crying that the sky is falling. Indeed, there are very scary things that are happening in this world, from climate change to water scarcity to habitat loss. It is also very easy to get bogged down in the doom and gloom and not know how to help or where to start.

Ok, deep breath. So how do we get from big, crazy, scary, the sky is falling, to crafters? Easy. It’s all about inspiration and a positive attitude.

Since I started writing for Crafting a Green World, I have met some pretty amazing people. Each and every one of them realizes the big scary picture and wants to help in their own way. They realize that we share a planet with finite resources and we need to find a balance to ensure the health and well being of generations to come. The first step is as simple as taking a look at the supplies we use.


OLIVE Hemp Organic Cotton Hand Dyed Eco Friendly Fabric

NoondayTextiles offers a variety of hand dyed hemp/organic cotton fabric for sale by the yard. When you choose organic cotton fabrics you are helping to support the natural growth of cotton without the use of harmful pesticides. By NoondayTextiles, $14.50.

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Orchard hemp/cotton fabric in Red

Check out this gorgeous hand printed hemp/cotton blend fabric from pippijoe. Hemp is a very hardy plant and doesn’t require the same amount of water as conventional fiber plants. Just because the label screams “stereotypical environmentalist,” it doesn’t mean sacrificing design. By pippijoe, $15.

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SALE Martha’s Vineyard Fiber Farm Long Sleeve T SIZE LARGE

Running away to a farm is probably pretty high on the daydream list, but low on reality. With MVKnits, you can own a small piece of your dream, and help out a small farmer all at the same time. By MVKnits, $10. (Watch the Handmade Portrait video Etsy made.)

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Harvest Farm misshawklet handspun yarn

misshawklet hand spins and hand dyes wool from rescue farms. No harmful chemicals are used in processing these beautiful animal-friendly skeins. By misshawklet, $15.

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Smoke and Mirrors- handspun naturally plant dyed wool silk yarn

folktale is another shop that is conscious about material use. This beautiful skein is hand spun and hand dyed. I had the chance to meet Folktale’s owner this winter. Watching her spin is magical and mesmerizing. By folktale, $28.

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SK-8 short-sleeved toddler t-shirt

Approximately 7% of the waste found in our landfills is made up of clothes, bedding and shoes. Help reduce this strain and have your old t-shirts remade into cute kids clothes. By sweetpepita, $40.

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Orange Julius Cupcapron

This apron makes me smile. It’s made from reclaimed linens and eco-felt, which is made from recycled plastic bottles. glueandglitter (another writer with CAGW) is doing her part. By glueandglitter, $25.

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Recycled Bike Tube Belt ONLY

Who would have thought that a bike tube could be a belt? steeltoestudios, that’s who. By steeltoestudios, $38.

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Recycled Skateboard Necklace 2in1 Reversible – Large

Or that old skateboards could be art? 2ReVert is on it. By 2ReVert, $26.

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New Square Broken Plate Ring Atomic 50s

Or that broken plates could be jewelry? By TheBrokenPlate, $50.

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Fawn in the Forest Necklace

This little fawn has a big story to tell. Their woodland friends are made with recycled and reclaimed silver and gold. By FigsAndGinger, $70.

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Adeline Coin Purse–Eco Friendly

Vinyl is a horrible, horrible substance. But until its production is stopped, it’s good to see that it is being
diverted from the landfill. By birdversusbird, $8.

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Zine Issue No. 1 – DIY recycled envelopes

Feel like sharing your newfound eco-knowledge and ideas? Why not write to someone about how they can help? Catch a hold of these cute EcoMonsters and create your own envelopes to send off your stories and inspiration. By EcoMonster, $5.

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By taking a look at the processes and materials used in crafting, you can help drive a sustainable future. Every little bit helps and every small step counts. So encourage each other in making more eco-friendly choices, especially now that you know how easy it can be.

Further Resources:
Crafting a Green World
Near Sea Naturals
Feel Good Style
How Can I Recycle This? 

Looking for past Guest Curators? Check out our archive.

Environmentally Friendly Gift Guide | Earth Tones Series

Zine Issue No. 1 - DIY recycled envelopes
Zine Issue No. 1 - DIY recycled envelopes
Pond - handspun organic cotton bamboo vegan yarn - RESERVED
Pond - handspun organic cotton bamboo vegan yarn - RESERVED
Adeline Coin Purse--Eco Friendly
Adeline Coin Purse--Eco Friendly
OLIVE Hemp Organic Cotton Hand Dyed Eco Friendly Fabric
OLIVE Hemp Organic Cotton Hand Dyed Eco Friendly Fabric
New Square Broken Plate Ring - Blue and White Atomic 50s - Recycled China
New Square Broken Plate Ring - Blue and White Atomic 50s - Recycled China
Recycled Bike Tube Belt ONLY
Recycled Bike Tube Belt ONLY


  • IlluminatedPerfume

    IlluminatedPerfume said 9 years ago

    A subject near and dear to my green heart. AWESOME!!

  • PhineasandLou

    PhineasandLou said 9 years ago

    Really cool :)

  • 4TheSparrowsNest

    4TheSparrowsNest said 9 years ago

    The neat thing about upcycled art, is that it's often one-of-a-kind. I'm really liking the fawn and forest necklace made of recycled metals....

  • chinadoodle

    chinadoodle said 9 years ago

    I just bought a lamb t. shirt. Thank you Kelly for showing this great stuff.

  • FlanneryO

    FlanneryO said 9 years ago

    I can't bear to think of a book...or a book cover for that matter being buried in rubbish forever... Hurrah for repurposed book covers! Hurrah for Pilgrims and a Wishbone!

  • redyellowandblueink

    redyellowandblueink said 9 years ago

    Ditto illuminatedPerfume! Etsy has been a great outlet for me, in wanting to put my work out into the world but with a touch of green in one form or another as a part of every sale I make. Thank you for this article and for the powerful items and the makers behind them.

  • amysfunkyfibers

    amysfunkyfibers said 9 years ago

    Great article! I love to find stuff. We are making a table for the outside with tiles that I found in the trash!

  • PeppermintDaydreams

    PeppermintDaydreams said 9 years ago

    very cool article. i daydream about escaping to a farm someday too :)

  • BlueTerracotta

    BlueTerracotta said 9 years ago

    Great article! I believe handmade will save the world too, doesn't everyone here? I love the ring by The Broken Plate!

  • dragonhouseofyuen

    dragonhouseofyuen said 9 years ago

    So true Kelly - it all begins with ethical purchasing and a belief in your own good! - the world will change!

  • IcingOnTheCupcake

    IcingOnTheCupcake said 9 years ago

    Great apron!

  • SewnNatural

    SewnNatural said 9 years ago

    Excellent, important and timely article and curation. Consciousness about fabrics and fibers, dyes, and upcycling is growing all the time, and this sort of feature only serves to help. Thank you!

  • woolies

    woolies said 9 years ago

    Really glad to see more organic fabric for sale here on Etsy! I've been searching for more! Also - MVKnits yarns are the best - and her blog is amazing. I've always used natural fibers for my Woolies, and am thrilled that the world seems to be catching on - as more and more organic yarns are available. Great Article!

  • OffTheHooks

    OffTheHooks said 9 years ago

    thank you for connecting the dots to the larger picture. great pics too :)

  • craftgasm

    craftgasm said 9 years ago

    I thought I recognized that fountain -- somehow I never noticed you were from DC, too. As a fellow repurposer with my crafting, I am so happy that upcycling is getting the attention it deserves in this article! Thanks so much for sharing with us.

  • elisasherejewelry

    elisasherejewelry said 9 years ago

    Kelly - great feature! Thanks for featuring some of my favorite Baltimore talent. Like Figs and Ginger, I too have made the plunge and am using only reclaimed and recycled silver and metals. It's such a great feeling! Mining metals is yucky, to say the least :)

  • tomatedepingles

    tomatedepingles said 9 years ago

    2ReVert is the best! great selection

  • littlepancakes

    littlepancakes said 9 years ago

    Love it all, great to see so many people into this lifestyle.

  • yummyandcompany

    yummyandcompany said 9 years ago

    great article! thanks kelly!

  • MarcoLaGrenouille

    MarcoLaGrenouille said 9 years ago

    Recycled skateboard is such a Great idea!

  • odiliafu

    odiliafu said 9 years ago

    Cool! Thanks for sharing.

  • niTeBecOmEsdAy

    niTeBecOmEsdAy said 9 years ago

    thanks for the great article and wonderful picks! i have been trying to find some organic fabrics, so i'll be sure to check out NoonDayTextiles and Pippijoe.

  • thestapeliacompany

    thestapeliacompany said 9 years ago

    It's nice to see some of the wonderful green items on Etsy!

  • SeaFindDesigns

    SeaFindDesigns said 9 years ago

    Go green!!!!

  • kottageon5th

    kottageon5th said 9 years ago

    Very inspiring - my favorite thing is to recycling windows - turning them into anything and everything!! We've got an old window-turned-(you name it) in every room of our house! :)

  • PipocaHandmade

    PipocaHandmade said 9 years ago

    I heart Hello Craft! Wonderful article and picks!

  • Fortheloveofproducts

    Fortheloveofproducts said 9 years ago

    Kelly, thanks for the great picks! I'd love to know more about what's going on in DC as I have recently started a green bath and body product line here. Thanks! Kristina

  • CositasSeriasVintage

    CositasSeriasVintage said 9 years ago


  • uncharted

    uncharted said 9 years ago

    It's always helpful to find out about more sights that offer eco friendly choices. Thanks!

  • lsagar

    lsagar said 9 years ago

    Its inspiring to see an artisan converge the handmade, with a commitment to green, and a touch of social activism...Organic fabrics rule!!

  • sandali

    sandali said 9 years ago

    Going Green is the ONLY way to go !! Wish more people were aware - preserve & let live :)

  • baconsquarefarm

    baconsquarefarm said 9 years ago

    Oh my, what great finds~!

  • TheCottageCheese

    TheCottageCheese said 9 years ago

    I really appreciate the "eco-friendly" themed storque articles. Great picks!

  • Mattamorphis

    Mattamorphis said 9 years ago

    great items!

  • MyTheta

    MyTheta said 9 years ago

    Oh I love Crafting A Green World ~ they sent a link to my fingerless gloves through their article 'Five Felted Wool Weekend Projects' - I was so psyched! Thanks!!! I love this latest article and all the wisdom! ;)

  • bhangtiez

    bhangtiez said 9 years ago

    I luv re-using/save da world style...thanks 4 sharing da goodies of green-ism.

  • nat1489

    nat1489 said 9 years ago

    Cute cute cute! I too have a green shop- jewelry made out of old scrabble pieces!

  • breadandroses2

    breadandroses2 said 9 years ago

    Swell collection & love those luscious yarns! Don't forget using pristine, new 'old stock' vintage fabrics is eco-friendly, too. Plus the quality is usually so much better than mass produced modern fabrics.

  • pogoshop

    pogoshop said 9 years ago

    Love these finds! Etsy's such a great place to for shopping green.

  • ChiChiBean

    ChiChiBean said 9 years ago

    Hunting for fabric is a passion. Especially vintage fabric. I have neighbors and friends buying sewing machines and asking me to help them learn the sew. Handmade beats store bought "Hands Down"(or is it hands up?)

  • PierogiPicnic

    PierogiPicnic said 9 years ago

    Great article...but since when is using wool and other animal products eco-friendly?

  • DeborahVoizin

    DeborahVoizin said 9 years ago

    Cool Stuff!

  • sweetpepita

    sweetpepita said 9 years ago

    Thanks for featuring my tee! I love that printed hemp fabric! So beautiful. Off to check it out now...

  • picklevalentine

    picklevalentine said 9 years ago

    I love that fawn and forest necklace.

  • Iammie

    Iammie said 9 years ago

    Nice, love them all!

  • 2ReVert

    2ReVert said 9 years ago

    Great article, and super duper thanks for featuring our recycled skateboard necklace! :)

  • pouch

    pouch said 9 years ago

    gorgeous fabric from pippijoe :)

  • LazyTcrochet

    LazyTcrochet said 9 years ago

    Great article and fun selections!

  • BayMoonDesign

    BayMoonDesign said 9 years ago

    Thank you for the tips on applying to a juried show. I have never done it before and I am thinking about doing so. Now I know what is expected! I also can't wait to listen to your podcasts.

  • EpicBones

    EpicBones said 9 years ago

    oh wow, looks great!!

  • herselfsurprised

    herselfsurprised said 9 years ago

    wonderful feature with some great ideas and projects

  • deebeale

    deebeale said 9 years ago

    Great finds especially like the Pippajoe fabric and the broken plate ring.

  • leahmackindotcom

    leahmackindotcom said 9 years ago

    great post! love the items featured.

  • Corbaecreative

    Corbaecreative said 9 years ago

    Wonderful! Crafting a Green World is one of my favorite blogs to follow - great ideas and well written.

  • TheBrokenPlate

    TheBrokenPlate said 9 years ago

    Wow! Thanks so much Kelly!~ Awesome picks!

  • ManoCelebrates

    ManoCelebrates said 9 years ago

    Happy to know handmade is getting popular.

  • RastyaRecyclets

    RastyaRecyclets said 9 years ago


  • metrostation

    metrostation said 9 years ago

    wonderful love the recycled crafts!

  • YedOmi

    YedOmi said 9 years ago

    Right on! I love the great company that we are in!

  • MVKnits

    MVKnits said 9 years ago

    Thanks Kelly! I love Crafting a Greener World. Thanks for including me.

  • glueandglitter

    glueandglitter said 9 years ago

    Thanks for including my apron, Kelly! I'm honored to be featured with such amazing green crafters!

  • Shroompiloop

    Shroompiloop said 9 years ago

    Green is the way to go -- love the fact that more people are aware ;)

  • akane

    akane said 9 years ago

    Slowly, but surely, I'm trying to add more "green" products in my shop. I also feature green living items in my blog at

  • LOOKAjewelry

    LOOKAjewelry said 9 years ago

    Fabulous and article and finds Kelly! All the yarns are so beautiful! As a jeweler I totally believe in using reclaimed metals and reusing scrap metal... it's awesome to see other artists using old materials in fresh ways :)

  • ArtWhims

    ArtWhims said 9 years ago

    Love the yarn choices!

  • mythunderstood

    mythunderstood said 9 years ago

    recycling that's very well done!!!!

  • midnighttosix

    midnighttosix said 9 years ago

    I love the fact that there are so many people now reworking/upcycling fabrics, trash, skateboards and more things than I ever thought of. Amazing. I use leather scavenged from upholsters who just throw out amazing pieces of leather and then turn it into cool wallets and stuff. I hate seeing so many useable things going into landfill.

  • andrewsreclaimed

    andrewsreclaimed said 9 years ago

    Excellent choices from masters of recycling and re-using, bravo!

  • RegalCottage

    RegalCottage said 9 years ago

    Fantastic items! Can't wait to see more in the virtual labs. Being Eco-friendly has never been so easy and fun!

  • zemphira

    zemphira said 9 years ago

    Awesome stuff here! I LOVE it all!

  • autumncomfort

    autumncomfort said 9 years ago

    Thanks for showing mine and Bread and Badger's wine bottle candle in the chat! Made my day

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