Last year we spoke about simplifying your holiday decor in order to save you time, energy, and most importantly, money. This year, the idea of a minimalist and simplistic holiday season is still resonating strongly with us so we are taking it a step further and investigating ways in which we can make this time of year – which is traditionally the most wasteful time of the year – a little more eco-friendly and sustainable.
We have come up with 4 ways in which to make a start…
1. Minimal Waste Christmas Decorating
We know how tempting it is to get caught up in all the new, glittery Christmas decorations adorned in every shop window. However, buying new decorations each year can lead to a lot of waste. Instead, think about decorating your Christmas table with fresh foliage and flowers from your garden and, perhaps, even making your own ornaments from paper, pine cones, dried fruit or salt dough. Another idea if you want to change the current colour scheme of your baubles, is to tie a small piece of fabric or tissue paper around them in your chosen colour, therefore, ensuring these ornaments will be used year after year.
2. Eco Gift Wrapping
Not only is wrapping paper expensive to buy but it is hugely wasteful as after being ripped apart it just gets thrown in the bin. This year we are putting all those old scraps of fabric to good use by using them as wrapping instead of paper. A handkerchief or tea towel can also be used to wrap a small gift, forming part of the present itself. Simple recycled brown or white paper can also look strikingly simple, as well as, a hessian bag.
3. Sustainable and Alternative Tree Options
Purchasing cut trees may not be the best thing for the environment and although artificial trees can be used year and year again, eventually they get disposed of and are difficult to recycle. Instead, use a dried branch or a potted plant that can be decorated in much the same way as a traditional Christmas tree.
4. Eco-Friendly Gift Giving
Buying eco-friendly or sustainable gifts is not quite as easy but we came across a couple of local ideas which we really liked, such as, bamboo air purifying bags, bamboo straw sets and flip flops made from recycled materials. Homemade gifts are also a great option. We especially like the idea of beeswax candles. bath salts, bread bags and homemade cookies and jams. And if you really are not sure what the recipient of your gift would like, it’s always a good option to buy them a gift voucher instead of something that will just be stored and wasted.