diy reusable cotton rounds.

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Back in December, I hosted a holiday party with a little zero waste white elephant gift exchange. For part of my gift, I made reusable cotton rounds that can be used in lieu of those disposable ones that come in a plastic bag. It was a pretty simple craft, and I made a few for myself and for other friends, too. Here's how you can make your own:

DIY REUSABLE COTTON ROUNDS

Step 1. Obtain fabric. You'll need about half a yard to make maybe twenty-five to thirty rounds. I chose a cotton flannel because it's a natural fiber and has a really soft feel. Pre-wash and dry your fabric so that it shrinks and softens before you begin working with it.

Step 2. Cut out your circles. As you can see in the photograph above, I used a glass to "stamp" circles onto my fabric so that I could cut out a perfect circle without having to fuss with a fabric pencil. I cut two layers of fabric at a time so that when I went on to the next step, sewing the two layers together, they matched perfectly.

Step 3. Sew two circles together with wrong sides facing each other, using a method that binds the edges as you sew so they won't unravel when you wash them. Because I have a serger (a type of sewing machine specifically designed to bind ends), I used that. You could also hand sew them together using a blanket stitch - here's a how-to. For me, here's what the finished product looked like:

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And, that's it! They can now be stacked up in your bathroom to replace your old disposables. Washed with your other cotton whites, they'll last for years (though I'm thinking of finding a small mesh bag to wash them in so they don't get lost). This is a simple project for accomplished sewers, but it's also doable for newbies and a good way to learn a new stitch or skill. If you're not up to making your own, you can also purchase these from places like Etsy. Godspeed, DIYers.