For many, the holiday season is a time to show how much we care for those we love and cherish. This year, why not add the Earth to your Christmas list? With a little forethought, your gifts and decorations can be both environmentally conscious and uniquely beautiful.
Earth Friendly Gifts
No one wants to arrive at a Christmas party empty-handed, but thinking outside the gift box can create opportunities for presents that are memorable and eco-friendly.
Reusing objects through second-hand shopping reduces the waste inherent in manufacturing and shipping. Consider a vintage item that speaks to the recipient’s personality and tastes. Vintage furniture, decor, and fashion all make for wonderful gifts.
Let us not forget that Christmas is a time for helping those less fortunate. Skip the stuff, and make a charitable donation in your friend or family member’s name.
Is a larger space for your growing Charlotte area business on your Christmas wish list? Building new space is never as environmentally friendly as finding an existing flexible solution. YourOffice Ballantyne offers fully furnished office suites ready to take your business into the new year.
Creative Gift Wrap Ideas
Traditional wrapping paper is typically made from young, softwood trees. The manufacturing process requires huge amounts of water and energy, and often incorporates dangerous bleaches and dyes. Safer eco-friendly wraps exist which incorporate recycled and renewable materials.
Since the ultimate goal is reducing waste, consider ditching the paper altogether. Repurposing old newspapers, posters, or blueprints can give your gifts a distinctive look under the tree. Alternatively, using an additional gift such as a wrap or scarf can make a package especially beautiful.
Deck the Halls
So it’s time to trim the tree before the big party! Making your decorations ahead of time from natural components can green-ify your home or office in more ways than one. Collect fallen pine branches, pine cones, and holly berries to create personal decorations.
When considering focal pieces, avoid disposable plastic in favor of handcrafted decor. These items may be a bit pricier up front, but will pay for themselves over time and reduce your holiday waste for years to come.
When January rolls around and it’s time to take down the tree, don’t just toss it in the garbage. Charlotte offers Curb It! Christmas Tree Collection. The trees will be mulched and used in city parks and playgrounds, instead of taking up space in a landfill.
Eat, Drink, and Be Merry
Environmentalism doesn’t have to stop when the party starts. With just a few small adjustments, you and your guests can make merry without a making a mess.
Avoid plastic partyware. Using non-disposable plates and glasses is best, but if your guest list outmatches your supply, purchase items made from recycled materials. Green materials are now available in a wide variety of colors and sizes, so you won’t need to compromise your party aesthetic to reduce your carbon footprint.
Make sure your guests are aware of the recycling bins and how to use them. Post a small sign over your cans informing guests how to dispose of bottles, cups, and plates in a conscientious manner.
The holidays are a time when family comes together. The most eco-friendly gift you can give this year is talking to your loved ones about the importance of protecting the Earth. It’s critical that we all do our part, but communicating this to your children can be difficult. By using the above tips to make your celebration green, you can demonstrate that eco-friendly doesn’t mean cutting back on holiday cheer.