Long-Lasting Cleaning Supplies

February 24, 2012

This post is sponsored by Glad. We’re taking small steps to do our part and want to help you waste less too. Visit GLAD.com for more information.
Marjorie, a Design Mom reader, sent me a link to the garbage bin her husband designed. You have to check it out. It’s gorgeous! The lid becomes the dustpan, and the brush stores right on the side so it’s less likely to get lost. The whole thing is designed to do it’s job for a lifetime.

Marjorie told me the dustbin is entirely made in Los Angeles. The steel base is folded and powder coated for durability by Angell and Giroux, who have been folding metal since 1946. The tampico brush is custom made by Gordon Brush, who make the brushes NASA uses on the Moon! And Mars! Find it for sale here. I would love to see one in person — I don’t remember being this excited about a trash bin before. : )

Over the past few years I’ve been making a mental wishlist of gorgeous, well-made cleaning supplies. But it’s been especially fun since we moved to France. The French make beautiful cleaning products. Milky cubes of hard-working soaps. Specialized wooden brushes for every task. And feather dusters that look too sexy to use!

Tell me. Do you pay any attention to the brooms and trashbins and scrubbers you keep around the house? Or do pick up whatever you see first on a mad dash through the grocery store? (I’m afraid I do some of both!) What’s the best-looking cleaning product you currently own? Do you find that better-designed tools make you more willing to tackle a task?

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{ 15 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Verena Beckstrand February 24, 2012 at 5:49 am

I never used to pay attention to my broom. Then we moved to China where every broom I’ve seen in the stores are about as long as putter. Thankfully the kids do most of the sweeping around here.


2 Design Mom February 24, 2012 at 6:32 am

That’s so funny, Verena! One of the brooms here in the farmhouse is also quite short. I think it might be intended for cobwebs, but I’m not sure. Baby June LOVES to use it while I’m sweeping. : )


3 Colleen February 24, 2012 at 6:08 am

I don’t own anything that looks stunning, particularly, but I did just buy these gloves at Whole Foods http://www.ifyoucare.com/product/fsc-certified-household-gloves-fsc-c005046 . I like the bright green color and the fair trade ethos of the company.

I am finding that I like taking time and money to buy cleaning supplies that are environmentally friendly and smell good. My teenage son, who barely cares if he showers some days, asks me to make sure and get Mrs. Meyers lavender laundry detergent, because he likes how our clothes smell.

Is the garbage bin for sale anywhere? I love that some people are still designing things to last, rather than for planned obsolescence.


4 Design Mom February 24, 2012 at 6:31 am

I love that your teen has an opinion on laundry detergent! So great.

And yes, you can purchase the garbage bin. Here’s the shop link: http://brendanravenhill.com/index.php?/shop/get-your-dustbin/ (I’ll update the post with it too.


5 carole February 24, 2012 at 6:10 am

The Europeans seem to have an innate design sense for form+function that America just seems to be missing. We do occasionally have a ‘hit’ here but for the most part utilitarian rules the day; if something is also beautiful it is just a bonus.


6 Tabitha (From Single to Married) February 24, 2012 at 7:05 am

I just purchased one of those squirt mops the other day (not the swifter jet though, I wanted one that I could add my own liquid too). It was awesome and made mopping super easy which is good because otherwise, I wouldn’t have mopped! ;)


7 Design Mom February 24, 2012 at 7:18 am

So nice that you can add your own liquid. Do you have a favorite kind?


8 Colleen February 24, 2012 at 12:22 pm

I got one of those too and really like it. I just use diluted Mrs. Meyer’s all purpose cleaner in it. When I first got it I liked it so much I thought it would make me want to mop every day, but it hasn’t turned out to be that much of a miracle!


9 Organic Cents February 24, 2012 at 8:34 am

I love the trash can, especially the white with the baby blue dustpan. It would be great in different colors! I think beautiful cleaning tools and supplies make a tough job a little nicer. My favorite right now is J.R. Watkins All Purpose cleaner in Lemon scent. The smell is so great I am constantly tempted to clean something! I would love to see a post about the cleaning supplies in France..


10 Sandra Gonzales February 24, 2012 at 1:12 pm

I do love preeety cleaning tools. I especially favor the Michael Graves line from Target.


11 Kristen E February 24, 2012 at 7:37 pm

Yeah, I bought one of the Michael Graves toilet brushes from Target once (it was on clearance) and I LOVE it. I want to buy another one for our other bathroom. The handle is perfect, it’s easy to hold, and it’s angled so you can get better leverage under the rim, where I get rust stains from our hard water. Love it! I also have the Method brand O-Mop, which is pretty fabulous too. It uses washable microfiber cloths (one for wood floors, one for tile or linoleum) that do a great job of picking up the grime. I do wish I had a heavier-duty scrubber mop for the kitchen floor so I didn’t have to do it on my hands and knees, but it’s GREAT for all the other floors in the house!


12 caddy March 1, 2012 at 11:18 am

Have you heard of Norwex?
Check them out – I have their mop and I LOVE it – no cleaners needed – it is amazing. http://www.norwexproducts.com/
I also have some of their dusters and they are fabulous.


13 Carol F. March 2, 2012 at 11:17 am

I love the Norwex mop, too! And the polishing cloths. The polishing cloths may have sold my last house. I love my jumbo Rubbermaid loop broom from Home Depot for sweeping the kitchen floor–looks like something a janitor at a school would have but the loop-y thing goes in the wash. I also love a very strong scent for cleaning the bathroom, like a Mrs. Meyer’s. And yes, I love a pleasing looking trashcan. I have a butterfly lid stainless steel can from simplehuman. I think I would have liked Marjorie’s husband’s bin just as well. Nice! And clever.


14 Kate Macnaughton April 23, 2012 at 10:52 am

LOVE that garbage can. Sadly my 2 boys (3 years and 9 months) explore EVERYTHING so our garbage can is tucked safely away in a cabinet.

We started making our own soap several years ago and I simply can’t go back to store-bought now. It takes about an hour but I get enough to last a year (and give lots away). It’s definitely my favourite long-lasting cleaning supply.

I’m also a big fan of microfiber. When the boys were born I got rid of all our traditional cleaning supplies because they put everything in their mouths (and I’ve found them licking the floor. YUK!). I started with Norwex but found it too expensive so I’ve switched to e-cloth. They last for years (and would be really good for cleaning the outside of you white garbage can!)


15 Julie May 17, 2012 at 10:49 am

Love the garbage can lid idea. I wonder if Kate would share her laundry soap recipe, I’ve been planning to switch over to save more money although I love the laundry soap from Norwex as all I need is 1 tsp per load.
I too am a big fan of microfiber, love knowing I get a real clean using only water and the Norwex antibacterial cloth. I know it is expensive but it is made better than any other cloth, with medical studies done, and it also lasts for years.


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