Holidays Go Zero Waste

Image by Chelsey Freng, @frengpartyof6

Holiday season being just around the corner is yet another occasion to brighten up the spirits with some beautiful festive ideas about decoration, gift wrapping, festive meals, drinks, and bonfires. Тhe holiday season is the time to really show our affections to one another, but it should also be the time to be a bit kinder to the Planet as well. 

Did you know that about 1 billion Christmas cards end up in the landfill each year? Or that instead of being repaired or recycled about 500 000 kg. of Christmas lights are just turned into scrap? Each and every year!

Major holidays are one of the reasons for producing excess waste and pollution. In order to avoid that, however, we do not have to cancel them all. We can just celebrate in a mindful way. A way that is sparing to the environment, but also quite pleasing to the eye. 

How to have a zero waste holiday? We have gathered some inspirational ideas for a more sustainable festive season.

Sustainable Holiday Decoration

At times when we are all rediscovering our homes as the place to be healthy and happy, it is important to bring as much joy and nature in them as possible. So why not spend some quality time with your loved ones, have a walk in the fields or in the forest, do some foraging, collect some natural treasures and bring them in? Pinecones, leaves, rose hips, and greenery would do a fantastic job. Or why not do some baking at home and create unique salt dough festive ornaments? That’s right! When it comes to decoration using natural elements, sky’s the limit.

Holidays Go Zero Waste - handmade Christmas tree decoration - star and pinecones
Image by Melissa J., @melissamaryjenkinsart
Holidays Go Zero Waste - handmade Christmas tree decoration
Image by Melissa J., @melissamaryjenkinsart
Holidays Go Zero Waste - gift wrapped in a muslin cloth
Image by Melissa J., @melissamaryjenkinsart
Holidays Go Zero Waste - dried oranges as decoration
Image by Alice X., @theecodiary
Holidays Go Zero Waste - handmade Christmas decorations
Image by Melissa J., @melissamaryjenkinsart
Holidays Go Zero Waste - handmade Christmas decorations and gift wrapped in fabric
Image by Melissa J., @melissamaryjenkinsart
Holidays Go Zero Waste - handmade Christmas tree decoration
Image by Alice X., @theecodiary
Holidays Go Zero Waste - handmade Christmas tree with branches, pinecones and oranges
Image by Alba L., @alba_leclrec

And remember, do not feel bad if you have already bought decorative elements and they are not that sustainable. You can still work it out. Just save them and use, and reuse them for the years to come.

Sustainable Gifts & Gift Wrapping

Festivities are not the same without gifts and gift wrapping, right?

What are the chances of getting the perfect gift? Data shows that 1 in 10 unwanted gifts is thrown in the trash bin. How to make sure that the gift will be fancied and appreciated? The best tip is to choose a gift that could be put to use, a gift that we all need: a pair of wool socks, a soft blanket, or a good book. Classic! Or if you are really stuck and short on time, you can still make it all-right with a last-minute e-gift card, so that the receiver could pick something that’s really desired. 

No matter what you choose as a gift, think twice before you wrap it. The wrapping paper used to wrap Christmas gifts can actually go around the Earth about 9 to 10 times. Well, we’ve got you covered on that as well. Have you heard of Furoshiki? It’s a traditional Japanese way of wrapping pretty much everything using a piece of fabric instead of paper. That piece of fabric can later be used and reused. You can even use a kitchen towel to do it and the towel itself is also a great gift. Or you can even skip the wrapping and just add a twine ribbon and a cute natural element for a festive accent. 

Sustainable Holiday Meals

Oh, the festive meals! Bet on home-cooked festive meals and seasonal products. Buy less processed and less packaged goods. Do not forget to freeze the leftovers instead of throwing them away. That will both save you money and time since you will have a delicious meal for after the festivities just right there waiting for you to unfreeze it.

Skip the Fireworks

The louder the bonfire night, the worse it’s for the environment, and the crueler it’s for wildlife and domestic animals. The best advise for a sustainable celebration would be to skip the fireworks or if you love them, visit a public show, instead of organizing one. 

We all badly need some festivities at the end of the year! So let’s make it a celebration to remember but also a celebration that will cherish nature and be kind to it.

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