Attempting a zero waste Christmas

So we are attempting a zero waste Christmas. I say attempting because I don’t see how completely zero waste would be achievable unless I was living 100% off the grid. But when it comes to reducing your carbon footprint, every little bit helps.

The Sustainable Seas Trust contacted me about doing a Masterclass on the subject, this was incredibly daunting, but I love the work they do and gave it a shot… The video is below…but here are some of the tips I shared

Think eco-friendly when it comes to gifts

  •  Buy from local sustainable, eco-friendly businesses

With this it is a double win because a lot of small business took quite a hit from covid19 and you will be helping out your community, but you are also helping the environment by opting for small businesses with eco-friendly ethos – I share businesses on my Instagram regularly

  • Gift from the kitchen

Filling recycled glass jars with homemade treats , such as cookies, sauces and preserves is a good way to reduce waste – it will also get your house mates to stop eyeballing your jar collection. A second win on this is that your friends and family will eat the gift which means even less clutter

  • Craft some gifts

A lot of people are nervous about crafting gifts and coming across as tacky. But there are some nice options out there. Thanks to craft blogs and Pinterest you can learn to make decent gifts with supplies you may have at home. I personally turned some old faux leather belts into earrings, turned t-shirts into shoppers, melted old crayons into cute shapes, and made a range of really good bath products from my kitchen cupboard (I even sell these things as part of my gifting business and no complaints as of yet)

  • Gift with an eco-mindset

With my gifting business and just as a person I love giving gifts that introduce people to a slightly more conscious mindset. Be it reusable water bottles, shopper bags, take along coffee mugs or cruelty-free beauty products. Your gift might help your friend think a little differently in the future

Wrap sustainably

  • Make cloth gift bags

Cutting the top of an old t-shirt and sewing the bottom makes an instant cloth gift bag. The sleeves of old jerseys or long sleeve tops can be reusable wine bottle bags, and old faded bedding can make lovely bags that can be reused over and over again. You can also just buy fabric. At home we don’t wrap gifts, Santa has a stocking mom and dad have a gift bag. My parents started this trend when I was little by putting our gifts in pillowcases tied to our beds. You can make gift bags with zero sewing, as well

  • Use your gift to wrap

This sounds a little crazy, but it works. Wrapping kitchen items in a dishwash cloth. Wrapping accessories in a scarf. A jar full of cute things and you get to keep the jar

  • Keep the secret tradition of reusing of gift bags going

Most people I know reuse gift bags so when you buy gift bags try not to be too obvious with the theme. That way the receiver can use the bag again in the future also don’t write your name on the bag.

  • Use carboard boxes

So many things come in cardboard boxes, from tea to cereal. I keep these and will either paint them with chalk board paint (now you can reuse the box as a toy) or cover with adhesive paper so the box becomes a reusable storage container

  • Opt for brown paper bags/paper

Brown paper packages tied up with string are so pretty there is a song about it. I have a blog post that outlines tons of ideas on how to upscale your brown paper gifts from fabric bows to hand painting. It can add a special touch while being a little kinder to the environment

Stay mindful

With this I’m referring to the little things we forget about but that can add up

  • Don’t be heavy handed on the glitter

Festivities are synonymous with Glitter but please remember that glitter  is a microplastic, and pollutes the rivers and oceans

  • Look at how you wrap

The reason I mentioned alternative ideas for wrapping is because the plastic coating in most wrapping papers means they can’t be successfully recycled

  • Keep an eye on your water usage

It is hot out and we are practically confined to our homes right now. But remember to use water sparingly, unfortunately, giant chunks of the country are still undergoing water shortages

Decorate differently

  • Re-use

It is tempting to keep buying more décor every year, but we don’t need all that plastic so opt for décor that can be put away and pulled out every year.

  • Look at nature

A fallen branch as an alternative Christmas tree. Fallen seed pods as décor. With a little ingenuity you can save money, help the environment and be so ready for the gram

  • Look at thrift stores/charity shops

You can find the most beautiful, preloved décor and sometimes all it needs is a lick of paint to bring it up to festive standards


  • Compost food waste from Christmas lunch
  • Use your real Christmas tree for firewood
  • Compost your natural decorations such as acorns and ivy
  • Remove sticky tape from wrapping paper and recuse next year

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