Rough Linen Shares How to Make an Eco-Friendly Alternative to Plastic Wrap

Based in Marin, just a block from San Francisco Bay, Rough Linen is a maker of timeless, elemental household linens and clothing. The company was founded by Tricia Rose after stumbling upon an heirloom linen pillowslip in her grandmother’s Scottish cottage. While we secretly wanted to ask her how to make a perfect hospital corner, she wanted to share something a little more impactful: an environmentally savvy method of using linen scraps instead of plastic wrap to cover your food— and she’ll even send you the scraps.

I feel a very personal responsibility for plastic waste as my father was instrumental in setting up the first polythene factory in the southern hemisphere, so when I read about waxed fabric food wrapping, I thought: Why not linen? I have plenty of scraps!

Dear Google. A search revealed products, DIY recipes, and suggestions, so I ordered some Amish beeswax and waited. It arrived deliciously aromatic.

What You’ll Need

A baking sheet
Parchment paper
A swatch of our Smooth linen sheeting scraps torn to size
Optional: Jojoba oil


Add jojoba oil to make it more flexible, but I didn’t try that this time, just a baking sheet (with parchment paper), a swatch of our smooth linen sheeting scraps torn to size, sprinkled generously with grated beeswax and melted carefully in a low oven temp – I didn’t want it to ignite! Five minutes did the trick.

I used an old (but very clean!) paintbrush to smooth out any gaps and returned it to the oven for one minute, then let the sheets cool.

First use was to wrap up a delicious stinky cheese. When it was finished, any mess rinsed off beautifully with a clean sponge and cool water. Next, a leftover half of a deli sandwich was given the treatment.

I love that each time the heat of my hands was enough to mould the linen to the food. When each sheet reaches the end of its useful life, I plan to roll it tightly and use it as a candle, or as a firelighter if the flames go a little too high for comfort!

If you’d like a box of linen scraps, we’ll send them to you for the cost of postage only. Email us at and we’ll get a box out to you. Happy recycling!

Visit Rough Linen’s profile here.

Filed under: How toTagged with: , ,