Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Cheap and Easy Homemade Swiffer Pads

Before I started my own blog, I was an avid reader of many blogs. When someone would go more than a day or two without posting, I wondered “ Is something wrong? Have they given up blogging? has there been an emergency?” Since I have started my own blog, I have found that there are many reasons that someone might not blog for a while. So, If any of you are like me and might have wondered “Where’d she go?” Here’s a short version:
Spending time with family, working in the garden, canning and all the while I think I’ll post tonight which then becomes in in the morning. Then I’ve started having some heart rhythm and blood pressure issues which have kept me feeling kind of yucky. The medicine made it worse, so I’m starting over and may have the pleasure of wearing a heart monitor to help figure out what’s going on. Meanwhile, life goes on…
…and things still need to be done around the house…like mopping. I have cheap inexpensive press and stick vinyl tile in most of our home (aka the basement while we build)and ceramic tile in our bathroom. Due to the high volume of “traffic” in our home,(small area and lots of people) the floors always need mopping and never look like they’ve been mopped. :( I’ve tried a large string mop and bucket with a ringer, a sponge mop, several versions of the swiffer and they have all had their positives and negatives for cost and ease of use. I really like the swiffer wet jet because it’s easy and convenient but can’t afford all the pads. We were already making our own refill solution. :-) So I set out in search of a way to make my own. There are several “how-to’s” out there, but none were exactly what I was envisioning. Then I came across these at Walmart:
Eighteen red, white and blue washcloths on clearance for $2.00!!…and they were about the perfect size for attaching to the swiffer. I bought a couple of packs and headed home!
Homemade Swiffer Pad Version One
The washcloths are a little wider than the swiffer, so I thought I would take them in to fit and to add a little more absorbency in the middle. So I pulled them together and stitched down both pleats and the edges with a zig zag stitich.
I didn’t take a picture of those stitches by themselves, but you can see them in the finished picture below. Next I cut up an old bath towel that is under the washcloths in the pic above. I rolled it over to get 3  sections of towel, the size of the swiffer mop head, before I cut.
I zigzagged the pleats and then pinned the “padding” to the middle of the washcloth and zigzagged all around the edges. Top view:
Underside view:
Attached to the swiffer:
These are are on a regular swiffer, not the wet jet. Those pads were going to be hard to attach without covering up the jets where the water comes out and I was getting tired of replacing batteries and yanking the bottle on and off to refill. So we are using the regular swiffer and a spray bottle!
Homemade Swiffer Pads Version Two
I wanted to make more, but wasn’t thrilled with my “pleat” to make the washcloth fit the swiffer, so I folded and unfolded ‘til I came up with this way:
Spread out the washcloth and put the layers of towel in the middle.
Fold one side in over the padding.
Then fold the second side over so that the padding is completely covered. Take the top fold and pull it back so that abut 1/2 an inch of the padding is covered.
Do the same to the other side so that it looks like this:
Pin it down and sew a zig zag stitch through all thicknesses turning and catching the sides of the padding as well
Close up:
And attached to the swiffer….they fit just fine!116_1818 We have mopped with these and washed and dried them and they are holding up well! It makes catching those little spots easier because I know that I won’t be “wasting” a pad for a spill!
Happy mopping and I’m glad to be back in blogland!! :-)
I’ll be taking my swiffers to the parties in my sidebar, so come along with us there are some great parties over there!I’m also entering these in the Fabric and Sewing week at
Come and check out the great sewing projects!


  1. I am going to make these this week! We have a new dog who sheds likes no dog before, and I hate to buy the refills for my Swiffer. It picks up the dog hair better than the sweeper does, and I sweep a lot! Anyway, I was thinking of using the fake shamwow pads from the dollar tree, but the washclothes are much cheaper! Thanks for the idea. I've missed you!

  2.'s so nice to be missed! :-) I've sure missed being here! I'm wondering about using a microfiber or something like that for a dry sweep. I intended these for wet use, but I have dragged it across the floor dry, and it still works! ;-) I have so much traffic that for daily sweeping I have to use a LARGE broom! lol

  3. I have a Swiffer just sitting in my closet because I hate paying for new pads. Now I can use it again! Thanks for the idea! And I have a bunch of microfiber diaper inserts that I might have to try and figure out how to attach for dry sweeping!

  4. Damn nifty idea I'll have to try in my dusty house with hardwood floors. Gonna share the love and share this blog post on @thrifcore on twitter :)

  5. Great idea and so colorful!!!

  6. Oh I am sooo gonna have to make these !!! You know my white tile floors and all the boys and the big slobbery muddy lab who sheds constantly !! THANKS mom !

  7. Just wanted to let you know that I gave you an award on my blog today. Congrats!

  8. Great idea! I have friends who love their swiffer but I've never liked the idea of making extra garbage. Now maybe I'll try one and make my own pads.

  9. Hey friend, sorry to hear about the heart / blood pressure stuff. I had some heart weirdness a few years back. They determined it was stress... It went away thankfully, but I remember waiting and wondering... especially since my dad had heart issues....

    Praying for you and doctors involved... Loved this idea here!

    Hope to see you soon!

  10. I understand the mopping and it STILL looks like it needs to be cleaned! My kitchen and bathroom floors are white--yes, white!! Maybe I'll redo them one day... maybe I'll endure it til we buy/build. :) Anyway, I do love this idea!! Thanks for sharing!

    And P.S. I just saw a comment you wrote on one of my posts several weeks ago ( So first, thanks! And second, I'm so sad I missed your Garden Party since, for whatever reason, I just saw the comment you left. :(

  11. Great idea - using wash clothes. I'm going to try this!

  12. You are SO clever! I love that you showed both versions! Keeping it real!

  13. Loving this great thrifty solution~now I might go get a swiffer b/c I just couldn't justify the costs....Thanks for making a solution I had envisioned but had not come up with!! Happy THRIFT!

  14. Great idea. Thanks for stopping by today.

  15. I've been planning to do something similar for awhile but still haven't gotten to it.

    Life gets busy and blogging shouldn't be life and so when people go I assume life is more important than blogging.

    I hope you get to feeling better.

  16. Great idea... I'm going to have to try that.

  17. I am going to give this a try! Love my swifer, just not the cost of the supplies.

    About blogging, I completely understand. I felt so awful about not posting, like I was letting people down, then I realized, I am only one person, something has to give, it's usually the blog.

  18. I am so loving this! We have slate floors in our kitchen and I can't use swiffers....tears them up...the swiffers that I am going to have to try this! Thanks for sharing at It's Party Time Thursday @PonyTails&FishScales!

  19. Sharon,
    Look at how clever you are! I did get your e-mail about the button and then when I replied it was sent back. So I tried again--e-mail.
    I LOVE the button. You are so talented.
    Thank you so much,

  20. I just use my swiffer dry, but these look like they would mop well! I have a huge amount of these white washcloths that I use for rags and also on my swiffer. I just may have to make something similar and try mopping with my swiffer!

  21. YAY!!!!!!!!!! I missed you! Not that I've been posting either (heck I even FORGOT hump day this week!) LOL, but, I've been looking for ya :)

  22. I need to make me some of these. Thanks for the tutorial. Now to get going!


  23. What a great idea! I was always wondering if those could be made. I am going to try this!
    Visiting from NFF!

  24. Thanks for following Dropped Sttches! I'm glad you did as your blog is awesome! I'm now a follower.

    xo Erin

  25. hmmm... I've never thought to try that. Thanks!

    I'm visiting from New Friend Friday at Girl Creative!

  26. YOU ARE A FAVORITE THIS WEEK @It's Party Time Thursday@PonyTails&FishScales!

  27. great idea! just this last week i tried a piece off of an old tshirt - worked great! t-shirt was free from my bro-in-law. i actually doubled the thickness and it did better. it did sling water around a little, but i just poured pinesol-y water on the floor, so....

  28. just wanted to let you know... i've started a blog and recently posted a shopping trip, including a pack of utility cloths like yours, only my deal wasn't as good as yours (9/$3 - but still not a bad deal) - so, the reason, i wrote - i added a link to this idea!! plan on making my own cloths!!
    THANKS!! :)
    summer @


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