I’ve long been a fan of Cabbages & Roses’ swoon-worthy floral fabrics, so when I saw that founder Christina Strutt published a book called Green Housekeeping, I reserved it at my library. I figured it would at least be pretty to look at. And it is! But it comes through with some good information, too.
In Christina’s own words, “This book is a guide to keeping your house clean by making your own cleaning preparations, growing your own produce and making your own remedies for minor complaints, with the emphasis on doing all these things organically.”
Green Housekeeping is a terrific book for those new to the idea of a sustainable household, but it’s inspiring for those with more vinegar in their pantry as well. It’s not exhaustive, by any means, but it provides both general vision and specific how-tos covering a number of topics.
Chapters are “Keeping House” (cleaning without chemicals), “Energy for Life” (reducing energy with lifestyle changes and kitchen practices), “The Kitchen Garden” (composting, community gardens, green gardening, attracting beneficial bees and insects, watering, natural fertilizers, garden pests), “The Well Stocked Pantry” (making jams, jellies, and cordials), “The Usefulness of Herbs” (popular medicinal herbs, growing herbs), and “Inspired Gifts” (choosing vintage items for gift giving, caring for antiques).
My favorite parts of Green Housekeeping are the how-to directions for making things such as lemon dustcloths, sticky fly paper, rose petal sugar, oatmeal bath bags, cucumber lotion, bouquet garni, and lavender bags from baby socks. (What an adorable idea!) I also appreciate some of the simple tips I’d never run across or thought of myself, such as boiling only as much water as you need and chopping veggies smaller so they cook more quickly, using less power.
I especially enjoyed the chapter on gifting, which includes ideas specifically for men and teens — the two I most struggle thinking of meaningful gifts for!
Whether you’re just dipping into sustainable living at home or it’s a topic near and dear to you, I think you’ll enjoy Green Housekeeping. Take a look, and please let us know what you think!
You might also enjoy:
I Quit Plastics and you can too by Kate Nelson
Attainable Sustainable, the lost art of self-reliant living, by Kris Bordessa