Eco-friendly changes you can make to have a more sustainable Christmas.
Midwinter Festivals, culminating in the globalised traditions of Christmas originated as the highlight of an otherwise bleak winter season in the Northern Hemisphere.
A time to look forward to and celebrate (or endure) those you share your winter hibernation with shared traditions and rituals uniquely interpreted by each family.
With Christmas nearly here, and whilst making our Christmas buoy baubles, we’ve been thinking on what traditions make us happy and which make the cold winter of Cornwall a happier place.
After a lot of thought we thought we’d shared what traditions we’ve decided to cherish and which to transform, forming a list of changes to make Santa as green as a Christmas tree again….
Buy or make fewer, better and thoughtful gifts.
When looking for presents remember there’s more out there than a plastic box of chocolates & a shampoo set presented like a Russian-doll of packaging.
You can find all kinds of amazing things people have recycled, made or given away. Head to charity shops, antique centres and second hand websites to find preloved gems for your Secret Santa, or re-gift things you don’t use.
Go for quality over quantity, a well chosen gift is better than giving someone ten things they don’t need. If you think this will be less exciting to unwrap, enjoy a treasure hunt, leaving puzzles to solve to find your special gift.
If you want to give physical gifts, consider buying reusable items that help your friends and family live a easier more active life: like a kitchen knife set for the wannabe chefs, a reusable coffee cup for the commuter or a new pair of wetsuit boots for the beach comber who’s toes are poking out the ends.
Don’t wrap it and chuck it, repurpose and reuse wrap.
In the UK, we use 227,000 miles of plastic wrapping paper every single year.
Instead consider reusing packaging, a delivery box or paper can be put to great use as wrapping and use paper tape and string stick it together.
Better yet, save some money and wrap your presents in an old sheet or old t-shirt that can be used again and again, (a tip many a person on Christmas eve in desperation has discovered themselves!)
Or you can be like my gran, ask your loved ones to unwrap carefully so you can reuse the paper and gift bags that you’ve been given.
Decorate in green, not plastic.
You can create gingerbread stars, dried fruit garlands or popcorn tinsel that looks as good as it tastes.
You can also find amazing preloved, recycled and even recovered fishing buoys to replace the tinsel and plastic (shameless plug of our buoy baubles here I’m afraid).
Forgo tradition entirely by decorating a beloved houseplant instead of buying a Christmas tree, or create a stylish festive feature out of what you have.
Make beautiful and clever, or crude and rude depending on your talent, decorations out of whatever you can find around the house. It’s far more fun.
Spread festive cheer to our feathered friends by decorating trees in your garden or street with bird seed ornaments, keeping them fed throughout the cold winter months.