I’m sure you’ve heard it before, EVERYDAY SHOULD BE EARTH DAY, but one is better than none to do your part or to adopt 1 new way of being earth friendly.
Before I share my one pattern 3 ways for Earth Day let me share one of my favourite quotes, not because she is a religious figure, but because these are the words I’d speak if I had but one statement to make about being environmental.
“I only feel angry when I see waste. When I see people throwing away things we could use.”
—Mother Teresa
Whether it be people bagging up recyclable things, not composting things, tossing things that can be easily upcycled, or using things which reusable options exist, but convenience trumps giving a shit.
I am not perfect! I am known from time to time to trump convenience over environment as well, and could up my recycling and composting game even more, but I for the most part work hard to love this earth that will one day be my grandchildren’s! If we all just do a little it HELPS!
use cloth bags for shopping I make my own and if you are new to sewing here is my tutorial on how to make your own, they last years, easily washable and save textiles from landfills when you upcylce old fabrics into unique bags.
use fabric gift and storage bags instead of plastic and paper Drawstring bags are perfect for this and here you will find a tutorial.
use reusable straws – I 100% support banning one time use straws, introducing paper ones or having to bring your own when dining out.
compost It is enforced in our city and I am glad because the stigma and fear of having this stinky pail collecting rotten food in my kitchen scared me. I’m here to tell you once you get past the fact that this little pail must sit on your counter, the stink is less than a regular garbage as it’s a small bag and is changed out more often than a large garbage bag that is left for days filling up.
use reusable cloths for cleaning If you crochet ( even if you are new to it) you can find a simple pattern here for them, These last years! Or simply cut up old t-shirts into rags, rewash and reuse.
Have leftover days once a week– I am not a huge meat-eater, but hubz is and by default I began eating more than I once did when I was younger, I am very aware of the strain on animal life to feed us all and so I use as little meat as I can and toss out only what we must, same with all other food items, stretch them as far as you can. drives me crazy that someone would buy a bag of carrots to use 3 for a recipe and toss the rest. ( we have a sweet, almost 6 years old, guniea pig who gladly eats up our veggie ends)
I have several meal plans that span the week and even month, it helps to buy only things that get used up in most of the meals
Recycle and upcycle for crafting and decorating I am not beneath dragging home a neighbours curb side trash to flip for my own use, although it is cool to do now I have my dad to thank for this joy.
I also have started more of old school, back to basics crafting, remember grade school when you’d come home and tell your parents to save kleenex boxes, milk cartons, and magazines? that we would then magically turn into art at school? Sure all those things can be recycled today but sometimes it isn’t about only using things that can not be recycled, it’s about refusing to buy new products when we can, reducing the strain on the environment to keep up with production.
I have decided on what I will adopt new
As part of this years birthday bucket list I wanted to find another way to be environmental, instead of always using paper plates while at the beach I will pack reusable plastic ones, after all its usually just sandwiches or burgers being served on them and they barley get dirty. I may even pack some of my flannel reusable napkins I made, or make some fun new ones.
Thanks for reading, here is my one pattern 3 ways for Earth Day, I chose fish because I wanted them for our corner shelf display as well as the yellow fish project. It may very well only be a Canadian thing, years back yellow fish were painted by storm grates, to educate, and influence society about our storm water pollution.
Yellow Fish Road™
Since 1991, Trout Unlimited Canada’s award-winning Yellow Fish Road™ program has been Canada’s premier water education program targeted to reduce water pollution. The Yellow Fish Road™ program educates Canadians that storm drains are the doorways to our rivers, lakes and streams and anything other than rainwater can harm life in and around the water, as well as us as Canadians who need clean water. Participants learn that together we can prevent pollutants such as soap, fertilizer, litter, dirt, oil, pet feces and construction materials from entering storm drains and protect Canada’s water.
more info herefish 2
This pattern was reused and not reprinted for these projects, as you can see from this free printable I scanned a well-loved pattern I had that I use to make cat toys from scraps of fabric.
These projects are great for kids and adults.
Scrap Fabric Fish ( for decor or cat toys)fish

Simply cut out 2 fish from your fabric, place them good sides facing each other and sew around, leaving a good-sized gap in the middle of the tail for flipping.
Flip it and use a pointy object ( I use knitting needles and an old drum stick) and push out your fish, then fill with stuffing ( I reuse old pillows, even buy cheap thrifted ones for projects like this)
I used a Q-tip dipped in white paint for the outer eye, then once dry I added a black dot with the tip of a paintbrush. (for toys I don’t add eyes)
Faux Wood ( or real wood scraps) Fish Artfish

It was still too cold in my neck of the woods to head out to the garage and dig through my wood pile ( hubz has since cleaned it but the garage is not user-friendly after winter lol) and I also wanted it makeable by anyone.
I purchased 4 8×10 canvases from The Dollar Tree, I know not very refuse friendly but I think it’s a small infraction, & these will be reused again,long before they are tossed. You could use a thick piece of cardboard as well, and definitely a scrap piece of wood as your base.
I cut the fish out of cereal boxes, again scrap wood would work great here too.
I painted the canvas to give them a distressed look, and the same for my fish, the eyes once again dipping a q-tip or tip of a paint brush in paint. I use sandpaper on painted cardboard with no issue.
I then hot glued the fish to the canvas.
Paper Mache Fishfish

For these I cut out 3 fish for each out of Amazon shipping boxes, we always seem to have some but any thick cardboard will do ( not cereal ,more like shipping type). One is actually on it’s third life, after our delivery it was made into a hut by our son & used by our cats for fun for a few months, I salvaged all the unscratched and torn sides, and recycled the rest
I then hot glued them stacked on top of each other and did one layer of paper mache over them.
I do 1 part flour to 2 parts warm water for my mix and newspaper. For 5 fish 1 cup of flour and 2 cups of water was used.
Once they dried ( a good 24 hours) I simply used craft paint on them.
If you missed the link above you can print the fish pattern here















  1. I enjoyed your post; I was raised (by necessity!) to be an upcycler LONG before it was popular My Polish (1st generation, grew up during the Depression) would buy a gathered skirt at a rummage sale for .10 and make 2 pillowcases from it! We had colored linens long before it was in style. Took me 30 years to wear out the floral flour sack pillowcases she made me! I haunt thrift stores and yard sales for craft supplies as well as clearance areas at my favorite craft stores. Menu planning is done by what’s on sale, what has a yellow markdown coupon on the short-dated meat, and what I have coupons for! I’ll splurge somewhere else!


    • My nana and dad (portuguese) taught me the art of upcycling, most of my doll accessories and clothes were upcycled from one thing or another. As a young girl i use to call my dad cheapo then mcguiver lol…now i wish he was alive so we could upcycle together!. My kids have caught the frugal and repurpose bug too!


  2. I feel the same way–I often say I upcycled and repurposed before there were words for the practices or it was trendy! Thanks for sharing your cute fish at Vintage Charm!

    Liked by 1 person

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