Mr Green redeems himself

Filed in Blog by on August 26, 2009 4 Comments
FavoriteLoadingAdd article to favourites
Eight tiles from Focus which come wrapped in plastic

Eight tiles from Focus which come wrapped in plastic

After yesterday’s landfill disgrace, Mr Green pulled himself back from a confessional this week with a successful DIY shopping trip.

In our dining room we have three alcoves which currently have spotlights in them.

As you might be aware, Mr G is currently rewiring our lighting to run off solar panels and he’s building LED light bulbs because they use far less power than incandescents or CFLs.

He decided it would be a good idea to put a mirror tile into each of the alcoves to reflect as much light into the room as possible.

A simple idea, but getting hold of three mirror tiles proved more of a challenge.

First stop was a small independent family-run DIY store.

They didn’t sell mirror tiles.

So we called into Focus DIY. They would be sure to have them. Well, fortunately Focus did have them …

In packs of eight, shrink wrapped in plastic.

We didn’t want eight, we wanted three and they wanted £9.99 for  something we only wanted one third of.

Mr Green said unmentionable words about how this was the way supermarkets and DIY stores made their money – by selling packs of something to force you to buy more than you needed or wanted.

We asked a member of staff if they were available singly, but they just looked at us as if we had landed from Mars.

I thought he would buy them, because I know that without them, his project is on hold. And to be honest, after his terrible buy at the Co-Op yesterday I was beginning to think anything was possible.

But no, with a flourish of his gorgeous mane, Mr Green turned on his crocs and led me out of the shop and back to the car.

On the way home we passed a builders merchants. We called in there and found, hidden in the back of the store single mirror tiles


We bought just three of the beauties; which is exactly what we wanted and spent £2.95. They came unpackaged, we weren’t offered a bag and there won’t be any waste.

I do believe Mr Green has made up for his hasty decision yesterday, don’t you?

What about you – have you been forced to buy more than you need of anything by a large store?

Tags: ,

About the Author ()

I am a long time supporter of the Green and Sustainable lifestyle. After being caught in the Boscastle floods in 2004, our family begun a journey to respect and promote the importance of Earth's fragile ecosystem, that focussed on reducing waste. Inspired by the beauty and resourcefulness of this wonderful planet, I have published numerous magazine articles on green issues and the author of four books.

Comments (4)

Trackback URL | Comments RSS Feed

  1. John Costigane says:

    Hi Mrs Green,

    Zero Waste is important but other situations can intervene. Finding a local Zero Waste alternative for the mirror tiles is a good result for Mr Green, since others can also benefit from the experience. LEDs are developing and there is value in testing their impact since their light distribution is different. I have seen garden night lights using solar.

  2. Mrs Green says:

    @John Costigane: Hi John; LEDs certainly are very different from incandescents and CFLS; they are more for directional lighting, as you say, but Mr G is going great guns with his prototypes and I’m really pleased with the kitchen lighting at the moment 🙂

  3. Pal says:


    Can you provide more details as to how you are converting to solar powered LED lighting, as I have considered this too.

    Also, I have yet to read all your site, but have you considered rain water collection for use in flushing the toilets? Maybe an insulated 1000 litre oil tank converted to collect rain water which is pumped to the loo when it’s flushed would be a possible solution? The pump could be solar powered too. (panel, battery, invertor)

    Some good stuff here, thanks.


  4. Mrs Green says:

    @Pal: Hi Pal, welcome to the site and thanks for your queries. I’m going to write to your email address because the topic isn’t really within the remit of this site. We keep the focus solely on reducing landfill waste, but I’ll answer your questions off site 🙂

Leave a Reply