Greening Martha: Eco Chic Autumn Table Runner

DIY Eco-Friendly Leaf Table Runner for Thanksgiving

There are so many incredible DIY craft tutorials out there to try – but how do we scratch that creative itch without compromising our earth-loving-ethics? That’s what the “Greening Martha” series is all about! I take some of the most lusted after Martha Stewart tutorials and give them an eco-friendly makeover, making you feel better about indulging your crafty cravings!

With Thanksgiving just around the corner, I thought it was high-time to get some seasonal tutorials going. This month I’m bringing you a DIY twist for dressing up your holiday table: the Eco-Chic Autumn Table Runner.

Designed after Martha’s “Festive Fall Felt Trivets“, my rendition of this uber cute seasonal decor utilizes leftover fabric scraps from sweatshirts and t-shirts instead of virgin materials. By using textiles that you already have lying about your home you can spice up your Thanksgiving spread without purchasing new fabric, which wastes valuable resources and pollutes the environment.

For an in-depth account of the full effects of the textile industry, read this report from the Indian Textile Journal, which documents each step of the fabric creation process and its impact on the planet.

So in the true spirit of  the “Greening Martha” series, here’s a fun eco-friendly tutorial that will have you jumping for joy with your Thanksgiving table design, while feeling good about your conscious craft choices.

Greening Martha eco-friendly leaf table runner

Eco Chic Autumn Table Runner

Supplies Needed:

+ Various fabric scraps or used t-shirts, sweatshirt and other textiles
+ A sharp pair of fabric scissors
+ Fabric chalk, marker, pencil or crayon
+ A leaf (go get one from outside!)
+ A threaded sewing machine or old fashioned needle and thread

  1. Gather up your fabric, paying particular attention to the color scheme. Warm, earthy autumnal tones are best. Also try to find a variety of fabrics to create a more rustic look. Think cotton, knits, fleeces and other cozy textures.
  2. Grab your leaf and set it down on your first piece of fabric.
  3. Outline the leaf’s shape using fabric chalk, a marker, crayon, or anything else you may have lying around.
  4. Cutout your leaf outline – doubling the fabric if you want to be extra efficient.
  5. Trim up your leaf cutout to ensure it’s look even sharp.
  6. Repeat steps 2-5 with your other fabrics.
  7. Once all your leaf shaped are cut out, set your sewing machine to a zig zag stitch pattern. If you’re stitching by hand – skip this step.
  8. One leaf at a time, stitch across the surface of the shape, lining up your next leaf just after you hit the edge. Alternate the orientations of the leaves with each new shape addition to ensure a more natural pattern.

DIY Green Tutorial: Thanksgiving Leaf Table Runner

 
And that’s it! In fifteen minutes or less you can have an eco-savvy, super chic table runner with which to adorn your Thanksgiving spread. It’s an easy, affordable, and of course, earth-friendly way to liven up your space without compromising your ethics.

Is there a sustainable how-to that’s caught your eyes for the holidays? If so – share the link in the comments below!

greening martha diy eco table runner

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Greening Martha: Eco-Chic Mother’s Day Gift Wrap

Greening Martha: DIY Eco-Chic Printed Paper

No matter what you’ll be gifting to your mum this Mother’s Day, there’s one thing that’s certain: you’ll need gift wrap. Whether it’s a unique one-of-a-kind creation or a store bought token of affection, we’ll all be scurrying to package up our presents before handing them off to our moms. So rather than purchase yet another roll of paper from the store – why not make your very own!

That’s exactly what Martha Stewart’s team did in a recent tutorial they featured on her website. But as is true to the name of our series, Greening Martha, we wanted to take this fun how-to one eco step further. The easiest way to do that was give the supplies a sustainable spin.

Rather than purchase virgin paper for the shabby chic printing, we reached for some recently read newspaper. Not only is it a more earth-friendly way to DIY, it’s also a great way to save a few bucks! Beyond the papery base, there was also the question of buying stencils for the project. Rather than purchase an item for the one time craft, we decided to get creative by digging through the fridge to find some just-past-fresh produce to use for stamping. We grabbed a shady looking celery stalk and decided to give that a go for the print-making. And boy were we pleasantly surprised! The simple geometric shape of the stalk, combined with a vivid set of hues, made for the sweetest set of wrapping papers that we’ll use to get our presents ready for mom.

And you can give it a try too! Below are our step-by-step pictorial instructions on how to make a simple and eco-chic set of wrapping papers using everyday items. Give it a whirl and be sure to experiment with different shapes, sizes and colors to add even more personal touch to your presents.

Pierogi Picnic Greening Martha: Eco-Chic Printed Paper for gift wrapping