Environmentally Friendly Butter: Swifter Sweeper Floor Mop Wipe Tutorial
Since Butter is on vacation this weekend I will try something new, a tutorial! She will be back next weekend for her Sunday walk.
I love using these reusable wipes and have found them to reduce my household costs, increase my ability to help the environment, clean my floors effectively, and they are easy to make. You don’t even need a dog to use these! Assuming you already have a sewing machine or serger and sewing supplies (needles, thread, pins, ruler, scissors) the cost of making both the cloth diaper and microfiber wipe is about $30.00. Even better, you might already have some of these supplies such as the floor mop or cloth diapers in your house, reducing the cost by about half! I found the most expensive item was the cloth diaper since they only come in packs of 3 or 5. I used most of these diapers to make mop wipes, but there are many other things you can do with cloth diapers if you look online. The following cost estimates were found online, but all of these items can be purchased at most local stores:
- Swifter Sweeper Floor Mop Starter Kit: $15.00
- Microfiber wipes: $1.00
- Cloth diaper: $12.00
- Elastic: $3.00 (for both large and small sizes)
When Butter was first brought home and learning to be potty trained she would go on our hard kitchen floor on top of wee-wee pads. Although she was typically pretty good, I did not want to have my house smell and so I would mop weekly (or as needed) to ensure nothing was left on the floor. Now, I am thankful I do not need to mop as often, but just having a dog in the house increases the frequency of necessary mopping and my costs.
To save money, I got a pack of microfiber towels and a pack of cloth baby diapers and made them into reusable mop wipes. I did not want to keep buying one time use wipes. These have worked out well.
When I need a quick clean up for Butters hair, a mop without chemicals or just a sweep, I use microfiber cloths to do this. I also use them instead of the dry swifter wipes to pick up the hair previous to moping. You can use these with water and it will make your floors look great, minus any chemicals. These are very inexpensive to make because the dollar tree has a pack of two for $1.00. After using these once, I place them into the washing machine and wash them before my next cleaning day.
I bought cloth diapers because I knew that they are good at absorbing and are durable. I use these for traditional mopping and have really enjoyed them. When I am ready to use them I get them wet and wring them out. Next, I use a natural cleaner that I put directly onto the floor in the area I am mopping. After that, I mop my floors adding more cleaner if needed and changing to a new wipe once the original is dirty. Once a wipe is dirty I place the wipe into the washing machine and wash it before my next cleaning day.
Now to the good stuff:
Microfiber cloth or cloth baby wipes: two 6″ x 12″ pieces
1/2 inch wide elastic*: two 5″ pieces
1/4 inch wide elastic*: two 8″ pieces
scissors or rotary cutter
Serger machine or sewing machine*
Swifter sweeper floor mop
Cut the diaper or microfiber cloth into two 6″ x 12″ pieces, placing them on top of each other. You will keep these two pieces layered the entire tutorial to make a double layer. Once cut, set aside. See the pictures below.
Cut two pieces of large elastic to 5″ lengths and the two pieces of small elastic to 8″ lengths. Set them aside. See the pictures below.
Gather the layers and the 5″ large elastic pieces. Pin the 5″ large elastic pieces with the edges lined up along the length of the wipe. Pin both pieces of elastic to one side of the wipe. Wait to pin the elastic to the other side until after the first length of the wipe has been sewn. Place one large elastic piece about 1″ from the top and the other about 1″ from the bottom of the wipe.
Using a 1/4 inch seam, sew from the top of the wipe along the entire length edge attaching the elastic to the layers. This will attach the two wipe layers together and the elastic.
Repeat on the other side. When sewing the elastic onto the other side allow the pad to bunch because the elastic will end up stretching when it is on the mop head. An example of the bunching can be viewed in last two pictures of this section. See the pictures below.
Pin the 8″ small elastic to the edge of the width of the wipes about 1″ from the sides. Pin and sew one side, before pinning the other side to reduce difficulty with bunching.
Sew a 1/4″ seam along the entire width edge to secure the two layers and the elastic.
Repeat on the other side. The pad will be bunched in almost half on the second side. This ensures the elastic will stretch when on the mop, holding it securely. Allow pad to bunch naturally. See the pictures below.
You did it! Trim any thread coming off and try it on your swifter mop.
*If you are using a sewing machine use a zig zag stitch going back and forth over the elastic and on the edges. You may consider sewing the entire edges a few times to ensure you do not have fraying when they are washed multiple times.
*Elastic: If you want to use left over elastic you can, just make sure they are the right length. It is best if one is thicker than the other.