The blog formerly known as   Fake Plastic Fish

Monthly Archives: October 2012

October 17, 2012

Want Plastic-Free Glue? Make Homemade Wheat Paste.

I felt like I was back in kindergarten yesterday… cutting and pasting with paste you could eat if you wanted to.   I’m taking my plastics information display to the ReUseConex in Portland tomorrow and wanted to make it sturdier. Taping paper pages directly to the wooden board was not working well.  The paper curled and the natural cellulose tape I was using wouldn’t stay stuck to the wood.

This is NOT attractive:

So I decided to mount the pages on recycled cardboard.  And to do that, I needed plastic-free glue.  Finally, a chance to test out the recipe for homemade wheat paste that I included in my book without actually trying first!

How to Make Homemade Wheat Paste, aka Plastic-Free Glue


1/2 cup flour (white or unbleached flour is best.  Apparently, you can do it with whole wheat, but it might not be as sticky.) 3/4 cup cold water 3 cups boiling water

That’s all.  According to this Instructable for making Read the rest

October 15, 2012

Our Petitions Make a Difference: Say No to Disney’s Toxic Lunchboxes & Yes to Safer Chemicals

Stop what you’re doing for a second.  I want you to start a petition.  Or at least sign one. Today is Blog Action Day, an annual event when bloggers all over the world band together to write posts on the same theme.  And this year’s theme is “The Power of We.”  It’s one thing for each of us to do our part in making changes in our personal lives to reduce our plastic consumption.  But if we want to truly protect the planet from the tons of toxic chemicals that are released into our air, water, and soil, we need to make our voices heard together, as a group.  And these days, it’s not really so hard to do.  With sites like that make it easy to create a petition and promote it virally via social media, anyone can take action for systemic change–flex our “citizen muscles,” as Annie Leonard puts it.

Tell Disney to get the Phthalates out of kids’ lunchboxes

When blogger Lori Alper of … Read the rest

October 9, 2012

Luxury Hotel Says No to Single-Sized Shampoo Bottles

Every time I stay in a hotel (and nowadays, with all the travel I’m doing to promote my book, I’m getting to visit more and more of them), I inevitably roll my eyes at the preponderance of single-sized, plastic-packaged amenities: little bottles of shampoo, conditioner, lotion, and single-sized soaps.  Sure, many guests love them and stuff them in their luggage to take home, but does that justify their wasteful existence?  I’ve blogged many times before about saying no to single sizes, which have a higher ratio of plastic packaging to product than larger sizes, and now an Albuquerque luxury hotel is promoting the same message by providing a better alternative: bulk amenities.

Not Like At the Gym

But let me back up a bit because offering personal care products to guests is not a new idea.  The showers at my gym have dispensers for body wash/shampoo afixed to the wall, as do all of the hostels I have stayed in during my travels. … Read the rest

October 4, 2012

Cardboard Costume Challenge for a Plastic-Free Halloween

Halloween Plastic can be scary!  But blogger Amber Dohrenwend has one solution to Halloween plastic.  She’s the author of The Cardboard Collective, a blog about using recycled cardboard (the kind you would fish out of the cardboard only recycling bin or dumpster) to create toys, crafts, and furniture. She lives in a small apartment in Tokyo, Japan with her husband and two children, where she says, they “strive to maintain a simple, cardboard affirming lifestyle.”  In an effort to reduce plastic consumption this Halloween and encourage fun and creativity, Amber has organized the Cardboard Costume Challenge.  I asked her to explain the challenge in her own words and also tell us a bit about herself and her own efforts at de-plasticking in Japan.  So, here’s Amber:


I’m so excited to be joining you here on My Plastic Free Life! I’m a huge fan of all the work Beth’s done. … Read the rest

October 2, 2012

The Reuse Alliance Wants You to Talk Like a Pirate

I realize  Talk Like a Pirate Day is over for 2012, but there’s a certain piraty expression that’s good all year round:  Arrr!  According to the official website, it means “variously, ‘yes,’ ‘I agree,’ ‘I’m happy,’ ‘I’m enjoying this beer,’ ‘My team is going to win it all,’ ‘I saw that television show, it sucked!’ and ‘That was a clever remark you or I just made.'”  But that definition fails to mention that Arrr! also sounds like “R,” the first letter of a string of very important words… words with which the Reuse Alliance would like us to become intimate and in particular, the “R” that comes before “Recycle”:  Reuse.

What is the Reuse Alliance?

“Reuse” encompasses a whole lot more “R”s, which I plan to have fun with in this post.  But… Read the rest