I buy clothing and household items at the local thrift shop. Yard sales are good too. I bought curtains which were recycled from hospital ER rooms (you know the ones that have the mesh up top?). Well, I recycled all of the curtains for my 10 windows in my living room ($5) and then took the mesh top and made reusable shopping bags. If I had gone to my local/national store, it would have cost me about $250 to cover my windows, plus the bags at $1 each would be $15. I saved $260!!!
Also I purchase from the above places wool and cotton blankets to pad the inside of quilts I make the quilt tops from old clothing (levis too) and line the backs with good flannel sheets (also purchased there). Many have become family heirlooms and are being fought over. Cost for one quilt? = $10.
I make my own laundry soap and dish washing liquid. Main ingredient=water.
My daughter has a farm and she gives me the old feed bags (would end up in the trash). I use them for my yard trash that can not be used in the compost, i.e. cactus, tree limbs, etc. Family give me plastic grocery bags (also saved from the trash) I use them to pick up dog pooh and line my small garbage cans with.
All my cut off ends of vegies, onion skins, potato peals and more are put into the freezer and finally compiled to make a wonderful homemade vegetable soup stock.
I only shop at the thrift stores on 1/2 price or $1 day.
My family and friends pass magazines and books around, thereby saving on trees, postage and $. Then we call each other to discuss what we liked or didn't like about the book. Happy Recycling