The holidays are such an important time to consider our impact on the environment. In the US, annual trash from gift wrap and shopping bags totals 4 million tons! That is a shocking statistic and something I am trying to be more mindful of this year. Read more holiday statistics HERE. These are some of my favorite ways we can still enjoy the season and have a very merry eco-friendly holiday this year:
1. Get creative with gift wrap. Consider reusing newspapers, paper bags or scrap material to wrap presents. Personally, I love using cloth or burlap bags. Not only are they great for the environment, but they can be repurposed. Save them to be reused next year or use them to hold makeup, art supplies, or cut them up to be used in the garden. Raffia, twine, and cloth make great biodegradable bows and trim.
FairstreetCrafts on Etsy has a huge selection of burlap and fabric gift bags that are great alternatives to wrapping paper. With their large selection, it is so easy to find a customized bag perfect for all of the people on your shopping list. Read more about FairstreetCrafts HERE.
2. Buy items made of recycled content. Consider sending e-cards this year instead of paper cards. They are a great way to save our trees. But, if you are like I am and still like sending a beautiful card to cheer up friends and family this holiday season, consider sending one made of recycled content. And, of course, recycle or reuse all of the cards you receive. Learn all about paper recycling HERE.
These cards from the Etsy store 622press are up my alley with a clean, beautiful style. Not only are they handmade on a letterpress from 1882 that uses no electricity, but their creator, Kristin also prints on 100% recycled cotton. While you may have already purchased Christmas cards for the year, she has cards for every occasion, gift tags, mugs, stunning paper flowers, and so much more. Read more about her shop and the process HERE. Her blog HERE is also worth a read.
3. Consider repurposed items. Repurposing items that might otherwise end up in a landfill is a great way to save the earth. There are so many creative individuals who are able to turn an item, considered to be unusable, into something amazing. Before you throw that old or used object away, scroll the internet for ideas on how you can repurpose it. You will be amazed!
The second I saw these ornaments from the Etsy store LicensetoCraft, I knew they would make great personalized gifts for quite a few people on my list but especially, the hard to shop for, boyfriend and dad. I love how they have taken license plates, as well as soda and beer cans, to make creative ornaments, mail boxes, and wall art. Read more about LicensetoCraft HERE.
4. Make natural gifts. As you all know by now, avoiding toxic ingredients in skin care and makeup is important to me. We can do this by making our own or purchasing from small businesses that don’t use toxic chemicals. The fewer the toxic chemicals around, the better for us, our planet, and future generations! I love packaging mine in glass jars that can be refilled or reused. Check out my recipes for making lotion HERE, making a sugar scrub HERE, and bath salts HERE.
Lemonbuzzzsoap on Etsy not only attracted me for their unique natural products but also for their upcycled handmade bee -friendly seed paper. Their wide assortment of spa products, from natural perfumes to scrubs and soaps, is sure to delight the picky woman or child on your shopping list. I am in complete favor of their use of organic and locally grown ingredients. Read more about the story of how they got their start HERE.
5. Give gift cards. Another alarming statistic is that over 60% of people receive gifts that they don’t want. That is a lot of unnecessary waste that often can’t be returned. Not only are gift cards something every person can use, they also reduce the waste generated by the shipping of packages to far away family and friends. Some of my favorites to receive are Amazon gift cards and Etsy gift cards.
From now until December 12th for new Etsy shoppers, get a $10 promotional credit when you spend $50 or more. Read more about it HERE.
I hope you enjoyed my eco-friendly Holiday ideas. What are some ways you are making the Season “green”?
*all photos courtesy of their respective Etsy stores