Thursday, November 6, 2008

IMO - EcoDrop cloths

I'm going to be painting sets for the next few weeks.

Actually, I'm painting a set for the next few weeks but it's made up of 8-4 x 10-foot canvases & 5-double-sided, 4 x 8-foot canvases. They are stretched onto wooden frames and then mounted in metal braces that have castors so they can be turned and rolled into position during scene changes in this part-Dickens/part-modern musical drama.

What it really means is that I have to cover a lot of carpet before I start painting. We don't have the luxury of a spill-proof room to work in. So I went hunting for drop clothes.

I ended up with an assortment - some canvas (reusable but pricey), some 3-mil plastic (guarantees my less experienced crew won't soak through the canvas ones if paint spills or they start dropping blobs), and some "EcoDrop: Biodegradable Plastic Drop Cloth"s. I'm always on the lookout for greener alternatives to plastic and this one caught my eye.

It's a relatively inexpensive, 2-mil, green-tinted, 9ft x 12ft drop cloth by Trimaco that claims to be leakproof and good for indoor/outdoor use. It's also supposed to break down in a landfill within 12-24 months and return to "simple materials found in nature" according to an ASTM standard. Of course, the manufacturer also cautions against storing it or using it in direct sunlight because it will break down more quickly.

What I like about it so far is that it's smoother on one side but slightly textured on the other which gives us better traction over the carpet. The color does help paint drips show up a little better and are thus easier to avoid stepping in. I have two that I'm using alongside the canvas and the 3-mil plastic for comparison over the next three weeks.

I'll have to keep you posted but my only complaint so far is that it comes in - you guessed it - a plastic bag.

This review was neither requested nor sponsored by anyone. I did not receive any product or other recompense. I wrote it because I tried this product and wanted to share my impression(s) of it.

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