House of Straw

Image Source: www

Image Source:  www

Us RUDE Guys do not live in an eco-designed house.  It is an early 1970s glorified tent!  It has some features that are sort of ‘green’ like roofing insulation and energy efficient globes in our light fittings.  Some rooms have curtains that are lined, and we have outside awnings on the windows.

We do however strive to reduce our carbon footprint in other ways.  We reduce, reuse and repair.  We rarely travel preferring stay at home mending and making do.  We are wary of expensive products that are labelled/certified ‘green’, refusing to be green washed by The Man.

What we do admire is others who owner-build with sustainability in mind.  And we would not rule out buying an already built eco-house on a small parcel of land in some sleepy seaside town.  Time will tell when RUDE Boy retires later in 2018.

On the topic of sustainable housing, National Sustainable House Day 2017 is fast approaching.  We just had to share with you Peter and Natasha Miles’ straw bale house in Merrimu, Victoria just up the highway from where we live.

A few years back, we spent an informative hour with this lovely couple .  Us RUDE Guys went to their property to collect some items they had generously listed on Freecycle.  They invited us into their home after we expressed a great interest in their building method.  At the time RUDE Girl had just completed a carpentry course and my eyes were wide open to future possibilities.

We would highly recommend that if you are looking to visit a sustainable house on September 17th take a drive to Merrimu and visit the Mills.  We know for a fact that they will make you feel most welcome.  Refer newspaper cutting below.

Oh, and what did they generously offer on Freecycle that we collected from them.  A digital camera that we used until were handed up mobile phones with cameras.  A computer hard drive that is still operating in RUDE Boy”s desk top computer.  And a lovely electric throw rug that was used many a time, and one such time was when RUDE Girl was very ill and suffering from shock.

 

Straw Bale House Merrimu Aug 2017

Straw Bale House ~ Merrimu.  Image Source: http://www.starweekly.com.au/pub/melton_moorabool/

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Frugal Facebook Friends

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This may sound a little bit idealistic, but when I go to my blog, my Facebook page, my Twitter account, I talk to different people from all over the world, and you see how it’s easy to establish a dialogue.    Paulo Coelho

Think about what people are doing on Facebook today. They’re keeping up with their friends and family, but they’re also building an image and identity for themselves, which in a sense is their brand. They’re connecting with the audience that they want to connect to. It’s almost a disadvantage if you’re not on it now.    Mark Zuckerberg


Beat The Man by joining hands and minds with like-minded RUDIES!!
  Karen Ellis / RUDE Girl

RUDE Girl [reuser of unloved discarded excess] is a die-hard Facebook fan.  I love Facebook and I love my FFF’s or frugal Facebook ‘friends’.  I rarely use Facebook to keep in touch with family. In fact I prefer not to have family following me.

What is truly awesome for me about Facebook is that RUDE can build an image and identity for ourselves and more importantly by ourselves.  We are not paying a middle man to create this for us.  We have the ability, to be able to create what in a sense, is our brand.  When you are volunteering your time and effort on-line, the no cost of Facebook, is the icing on the cake that helps us to spread the RUDE philosophy.

RUDE strives to promote our ‘brand’ as a priority, and Facebook gives us the opportunity to spread the word about living a frugal life that incorporates reuse and repair. We believe our volunteer on-line and community ‘brand’ is unique, and worth shouting out about.  We do this most days on Facebook @ruderepair, and weekly on this blog.

This week RUDE were humbled that its philosophy was openly recognised by a Facebook friend.  She was introduced to Facebook via a group that I administrate, and from there found out about RUDE.  She has now created her first Facebook group titled Friends who like Rude Record here.

Over the past couple of years she had been inspired by what RUDE promotes, and is incorporating more reuse and repair into her daily life, as a result of following Rude Record on Facebook @ruderepair.  She has definitely been beating The Man, as she builds a new home, and furnishes it totally with pre-loved pieces, and her own handcrafts.  Her husband has been helping her to re-vamp these pieces, and to make them their own.

This is what she wrote as follows:

For all the Friends Who Like Rude Record, I need to stress that Rude Record is not a site with cheeky pictures of naked ladies. RUDE is:

Reuse Unloved Discarded Excess

Rude Record is a blog full of useful and inspirational ideas of how to share a lifestyle of frugal living and the Eco Warrior lifestyle. Friends Who Like Rude Record is for the benefit of the fans of Eco Warriors Karen and Danny Ellis, better known as RUDE Girl Karen and and RUDE Boy Danny from RUDE Record.

RUDE Girl Karen is the administrator of their blog RUDE Record. Karen jumped off the “working for the man” treadmill a few years back. RUDE Boy and Girl combine their shared abilities to immerse themselves in their passion for rescuing and reusing stuff dumped at the point of landfill. At the moment RUDE Boy Danny continues six weeks on and six weeks off “Working for the Man”. However, this will soon change.

These two radical Eco Warriors are passionate recyclers who maintain a very thrifty and modest lifestyle by making do, restoring, mending and more often than not choose not to buy new products. RUDE Girl and Boy have a frugal philosophy which they describe as Scavenger Style. It is a political statement against textile waste, a throw away society and planned obsolescence.

Friends Who Like Rude Record have the opportunity to share their own ideas here, to spread the word about the alternatives for our consumer society. This site is for all the Friends to post ideas, information about secret places where free or dirt cheap stuff is languishing away instead of being usefully recycled. Finally, it is to share your own ideas that highlight and help to share the knowledge of how to live a rich lifestyle without being a thoughtless consumer.

I invite all Friends to join hands and enrich your lives from the knowledge base that is Rude Record.

https://www.facebook.com/groups/109378302822919/

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Winners are Grinners

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RUDE Girl wears hat that was saved from landfill fate. Bought from her local TIP SHOP for 50 cents!

First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win.

Mahatma Gandhi

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RUDE’S weekly Friday blog post from 18 September is very late.  But better late than never, with some wonderful news.  RUDE Girl is a winner, yey!!

I entered a competition on Facebook to win a desk top computer.  Greenpower Recycling  [Facebook Page] was running the competition.  All I had to do was like the post and share it.

I must say that my current computer has been recycled over the past decade, from bits and pieces of e-waste from the local tip shop.  To win a recycled computer that is newer and faster is very much appreciated.  Thank you to Greenpower Recycling [website] for the opportunity to enter its competition.

Beat The Man by recycling your e-waste for reuse!

RUDE Reading

I do fear for the generations of people who came of age thinking that pop-punk is what punk is, and that all the rebellion you need is just to stick your tongue out in the mirror every once in a while.

Jello Biafra

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“A creative artist is rebellious by nature” Philippe Petit. This book is about somebody who refused to abide by the rules.


RUDE has requested the above book from the library.  It cannot arrive quick enough.  Asking permission is definitely not part of RUDE’S creative process.  Whilst we always endeavour to be polite and considerate, we refuse to succumb to re-creating in a traditional environment.  Below, is the above book’s abstract, if you are interested.

“In the vein of The Creative Habit and The Artist’s Way, a new manifesto on the creative process from a master of the impossible. Since well before his epic 1974 walk between the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center, Philippe Petit had become an artist who answered first and foremost to the demands of his craft-not only on the high wire, but also as a magician, street juggler, visual artist, builder, and writer. A born rebel like many creative people, he was from an early age a voracious learner who taught himself, cultivating the attitudes, resources, and techniques to tackle even seemingly impossible feats. His outlaw sensibility spawned a unique approach to the creative process-an approach he shares, with characteristic enthusiasm, irreverence, and originality in Creativity: The Perfect Crime. Making the reader his accomplice, Petit reveals new and unconventional ways of going about the artistic endeavor, from generating and shaping ideas to practicing and problem-solving to pulling off the “coup” itself-executing a finished work. The strategies and insights he shares will resonate with performers of every stripe (actors, musicians, dancers) and practitioners of the non-performing arts (painters, writers, sculptors), and also with ordinary mortals in search of fresh ways of tackling the challenges and possibilities of everyday existence”–

 And if you want to find out more about Philippe and his book take a listen to a radio interview here

The RUDE Rebel Factor, what is it?  What sets us apart creatively?  What’s our point of difference?  Why does it matter?  Are we that different to other rebellious creatives?  And on and on, these questions, and many more like them, get discussed most days in the RUDE residence.

One thing for sure, is that we are not creatively inclined to walk a tightrope between two high buildings.  But we do agree that we walk an imaginary tightrope strung across societal boundaries.  Boundaries that are governed by what’s acceptable, what’s not and what is tolerated.

Not everyone can handle stepping out of the ordinary, nor do they have the courage to do so.  RUDE is not concerned by societal expectations, especially around consumerism.  We want to step out of the mainstream because that very action fuels our creativity.  That’s where we come into our own, and get into our creative flow.

Shopping at landfill and not the mall is making a huge political and economic statement.  Re-creating with resources gleaned at landfill, like a fabric quilt, is a totally rebellious notion in traditional quilting circles.  Many traditional quilters today, may have used recycled fabric for quilts, but from landfill, RUDE bets not!!

RUDE girl has also been thinking about the blogs that we read to inspire us.  And the few we follow, all have one thing in common.  They are a bit naughty, some openly and some not so much, You can read the spunk between the lines, without the blog’s writer necessarily being exposed as rebel rousing.  And you know what’s the icing on the cake?  They have featured us and our Scavenger Style on their blogs.


Two awesome blogs that immediately come to mind are, Green Issues by Agy, a self-confessed fabric hacker and Confessions of a Refashionista, a quirky Berlin blogger and creator of awesome video content.

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This cushion is made from recycled men’s shirts and African inspired printed fabric. It has been donated for sale by RUDE to the Kontiki Cultural Women’s Empowerment Group.

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Back view of the same donated cushion, using the front of a men’s shirt.


Beat The Man and don’t ask permission to re-create.  Just do it!!  Oh, and let RUDE know if you read Creativity The Perfect Crime.

Scrap Woollen Quilt

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RUDE Girl was not well for a couple of days this week.  And when you do on-line volunteering you are snowed under when you get back to the computer.  That’s my excuse for this Friday’s late blog post.

A follower of Rude Record’s blog posted a lovely article this week from Linda Holliday in Missouri.  Linda writes poignantly about her mother’s quilting with scrap fabric and old clothes.  I related very much when Linda highlighted that she had made a quilt from new polyester fabric but somehow it did not quite have the homely feel and character as her mother’s quilts.  It’s a reason that I too left behind sewing with new fabric in the late 1980s.

You can read Linda’s article here.

Reading her beautiful story took me back to the middle of last year 2014, when I started planning a quilt for my daughter Rebecca and her partner Danny.  Of course, it goes without saying that recycled fabric was going to be used.  My choice of fabric was wool for warmth because this throw rug was going to be taken to winter football games.

However, the recycled wool fabric had to be sourced as it was discovered.  This took a couple of months but it was well worth the search.  It makes for an interesting story as presented in the video below.  This video is a shortened version that was made to accompany the gift.  I have made it especially for this blog post.

https://youtu.be/Mui1lXyGFWw

You can also read more about the making of this quilt in a previous blog post at this link below.
https://ruderecord.wordpress.com/2014/09/26/scavenger-saint/

Beat The Man and use up your scraps, be it food or fabric!

A Few Favourite Things

The best things in life are unexpected – because there were no expectations.

Eli Khamarov

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A favourite children’s book rescued from landfill. Was originally a library book.

This Friday’s blog post is going to arrive late, and a bit wanting.  It is 7.30 pm in Melbourne, Australia and RUDE has been unexpectedly distracted.  And like the quote above when there are no expectations wonderful things do happen.

Firstly before we share what we have been doing, I want to let you know that in last week’s blog post I was not really crying at the funeral of our old oven.  It was staged for the first owners of the house.  They had built the house, and were very kind to us when we bought it off them.  We send them details of what is happening to their old home once or twice a year.

Anyway back to what unexpectedly distracted us this afternoon.  RUDE went down to our recycling facility’s Tip Shop.  We go about once a week these days.  The place is overrun with market traders and on-line sellers who are ruthless.  We are only interested in things for our personal use.  We prefer to scavenge around when it is quiet, and today it was because it has been very cold in Melbourne.

We had a great score today with six contemporary style dining room chairs in very good condition.  I also managed to pick up a big bag of garments for refashion.  We scored a working toaster, a brand new kettle, a 1976 sewing book by Woman’s Day, a small bedside chest of drawers and some other bits and bobs.

Of course when we got all these things home there was work involved.  Clothes have to be soaked overnight.  The chairs had to be vacuumed and wiped down.  And the bedside table had to be cleaned and positioned for immediate service.

It was then dinner time and my blog post had not been given any thought, other than I must write it.  This week we will share just a few things that we have scored for next to nothing but have used over and over again.  It’s a good example of what people throw away.  And what other people, like us, make very good use of. 

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A compressor rescued from landfill. It was working but had a broken air gauge. RUDE boy repaired it and the gauge is working now.

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Water pressure unit for all sorts of cleaning jobs around the house. Rescued from landfill. It did not work. RUDE Boy replaced the power lead and it works now, yey!

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RUDE’S three favourite knives.

The knives come from various places.  The top knife is amazingly sharp and was made in Portugal.  it’s great for cutting and slicing meat.  It cost $1.00 at a little charity shop in rural Victoria.

The middle knife is serrated and is great for slicing tomatoes.  It cost $0.00 and was found in the rubbish bin at the Tip Shop.

The bottom knife is a gem, and we have never been able to find this brand of knife in the shops or online from memory.  It is made in Italy, and is an all-purpose knife that cuts a treat.  It probably cost 50 cents in a charity shop many years ago.  It has never needed to be sharpened.

There was absolutely every expectation these knives were blunt when they were taken home by us.  All three have exceeded expectation, and have bought such joy to the task of food preparation. 

I will be showing in a future blog post our new chairs but I will share the very dirty toaster we bought it for $1.00.  We only ever pay that much for this type of electrical item as again we expect it not to be working.

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Very dirty Ronson brand crumpets and bread toaster. RUDE Boy has it on the sink for testing and cleaning.

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Orange handbag bag with chocolate-brown handles. Brand unknown. Not leather but loved the colour and shape.

Beat The Man by not expecting too much.  Anything over and above can turn out to be the best thing!

RUDE on Recycling and Rhetoric

“The values we live by are worth more when we pass them on.”  Author of Foundations of a Better Life

Today RUDE Girl finally realised that what RUDE does is definitely frugal.  We re-use and re-purpose.  We make do and mend.  We are NOT modern-day upcyclers.  We were the children of menders and repairers.  There was no excess of stuff to be frivolous with, in order to satisfy creative desire.

This article on upcycling is definitely NOT what we do, and we do not aspire to do our recycling in this manner.  We hope if you are conflicted about what it is you do, in relation to the type of re-cycling you undertake, then this article will clarify it for you.

For this week’s frugal Friday blog post, we just want to share a few scrapbook moments.  It’s a little glimpse into what we have been doing.  It’s very cold in Melbourne, Australia so RUDE being homebodies tend to hibernate at home and potter around.

Yesterday we did venture out to visit RUDE boy’s father in hospital.  He’s 86 years of age and undergoing surgery.  On the way home we stopped in a rest area behind some shops, to have our BYO refreshments, and RUDE boy just could not help but look through a pile of rubbish [photo below].

And yes, he found a few bits and pieces that he salvaged for possible future projects.  You can see the blue vacuum cleaner in the foreground.  He cut the cord off and took the clips and base.  He found some handles that he unscrewed from a security screen door.

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RUDE Boy loves a good scavenge through a pile of rubbish.

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Struggling ratepayers dealing with rate increases above CPI, foot hefty cost for three council officials to attend a conference in Mexico.

Many of you will know that RUDE is an avid activist on many issues related to recycling but also on global and local issues that we feel passionate about.  We advocate by making commentary and/or opinion on many issues, and we post widely.  This weather keeps us indoors, and what better way to be ageing activists than to have our say from the comfort of our armchairs.

This week just passed,  this article [above] in our local newspaper was featured, and we had to get our frugal heads around it. We initially thought it was a joke not a junket.

RUDE lives a frugal lifestyle to help ensure we can pay our ever-increasing costs of living, including municipality rates.  Cost of living in Melbourne, Australia is one of the highest in the world.  We get disgusted by some of the wasteful ways of our local council. This is evidenced by, in our view, an ignorant and self entitled organisation sending not one, but three officials to Mexico to spin and spruik at the 2nd Global Network of Learning Cities Conference. 

Anyways, moving on from unfairness and an overseas junket, to lack of transparency in relation to donations to charities.  This week we posted about how we have been getting all these donation bags stuffed into our letter box.  Four in a week is telling us something is not quite right in charitable land. 

We suspect private recyclers are paying charities money to use their names on these bags, but that the donations are going anywhere but our local charity shops.  We believe from what we have read, and have been told, that private recyclers are making money on-selling the donations to merchants that ship textiles overseas.

We suspect, many people donating are thinking that their local charity shops are being stocked from their goodwill.  Our understanding is that a vast amount is being shipped to third world countries.  This can have devastating effects on local tailoring and textile manufacturing industries in these countries.

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Four plastic bags in a week shoved into RUDE’S letterbox. A bag for Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday.

To end on a lighter and more positive note, I thought I would share a photo of stuff we bought before our landfill scavenger days. The old wardrobe and trunk came from charity shops.  From memory we paid $25 for the robe and $20 for the trunk.  The mat covering the trunk was purchased for $5 from a garage sale. 

And like I said at the start of this blog we do not upcycle .  We immediately reuse what goes into our home.  The wardrobe is a storage cupboard for RUDE boys electrical bits and bobs, a step-ladder and vacuum cleaner.  The trunk stores winter curtains during summer and summer curtains during winter. Everything in the robe and trunk is from landfill.

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RUDE decor is secondhand, and all about immediate reuse and practical function.

Beat The Man and pass on your frugal tips and tricks for a better life.  Stick it to The Man when fairness is forgotten or ignored.  Refuse to vote for The Man who is self-indulgent.