Mulching Clothes


I don’t like to waste.  Sometimes I get very overwhelmed with the sheer amount of stuff out there.  Hidden landfills, better left unthought of, filled to the brim and sealed with things that may never decompose!  Department stores and Walmarts full of disposable stuff.  Okay, I am getting depressed now so in order to not hit the liquor cabinet this early, I want to think of reusing.

Oh man, do we have stuff.  An entire garage of stuff, closets and basement and bedrooms of stuff.  Today, specifically I am thinking of clothes.  Yesterday I took five full bags of clothes out of my bedroom (and I still don’t know where I am going to put all the clothes currently drying on the line!).  FIVE!  I have friends that give me cute clothes that no longer fit, and I am good with that.  I have people in our life who are pretty certain we are struggling through poverty and give me bags of clothes (yes, I need to learn to say “no thanks”!), and we have a really nice second hand store here with the occasional sweet sun dress, skirts, or overalls that I must have.  I am attempting to get rid of this city girl vice.  The chickens and bugs in the garden really couldn’t care less how cute I am.

Many of the clothes just end right back up at the second hand store.  Renting clothes I guess we could say.  But, what do you do with the clothes that are not nice enough to be given to charity but you don’t really want to send them to sit for all eternity in the landfill?

  1. You could use cotton clothing to tear into strips and make a nice rag rug, charming in any farmhouse (even if it’s in town). I did hear that you can only use cotton for this purpose.  Someone correct me if I am wrong.
  2. Patchwork quilt….anyone have a year on their hands?
  3. Dusting rags

Here is my current problem, most clothing is a mixed blend, I already have twenty projects going right now, and I seriously don’t need any more dusting rags.  So, here is my crazy idea and you all make sure to sound out if this is the stupidest idea I have ever had.


Take this lovely teal skirt.  It was gently wafting in the breeze outside one of those India Imports shops.  It screamed of belly dancing and cool refreshing walks in the park, and a promise of a whoosh-whoosh every time I walked.  I bought it at a ridiculously high non-thrift store price.  It promptly started unraveling at the seams, then continued to snag on everything that I walked by.  It’s not a flattering cut and I am pretty much done humoring it!  What if I took my pile of clothes; discards, couch covers that Bumble ruined, stained beyond belief shirts of Doug’s, frayed skirts and placed them in the garden walkways and covered them with straw?  Would this work?  Would this keep the weeds down?  Would it provide lovely pathways?  No one would be the wiser with the packed down straw on top and weeds would have to work forever to get their pesky heads through.  Or, would I trip over a skirt, smack my face on a raised bed, and have a huge wet, moldy mess to clean up when it didn’t work?

I am counting on you people out there!  Sound off!

5 Comments Add yours

  1. L Allen says:

    Hmmmm….with the straw on top it might be alright…. I don’t think you’ll trip because you wouldn’t be shuffling your feet in the straw.
    When we cleaned out this shed and the area for the coop and run, they had big sections of CARPET semi buried in the ground both in the coop and in the run. In the run, they had plants growing on them. Had we wanted to de-weed the area, it probably would have been a great thing, because we just had to pick and pull up the carpet and everything growing came with it.
    Starting out, if it didn’t work despite the straw, you could just pull up the clothes and the shallow rooted plants would come with it. As the clothing begins to rot and get holes it would change though.

    1. Katie says:

      I think I am going to try it!

      1. L Allen says:

        Ummm…. someone might be sending you a message very soon. I hope you don’t mind that I directed them your way. I gave them your website so they’ll be getting ahold of you by email.

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