The holiday season is quickly approaching, and Black Friday is tomorrow. The day in which people spend a lot of money on a lot of things they don't necessarily need.
This Black Friday, we are participating in Buy Nothing Day, a movement against consumerism.
We are teaming up with Green Action Centre to talk about being green this holiday season!
Check out our article coming soon where I talk to them about all the things you can do instead of shopping on Black Friday!
We get it, buying gifts for friends and family is great, and we love seeing the looks on their faces when they appreciate the gifts they received.
We are not going to sit here and tell you that buying all gifts is a bad idea because that's not true. Creating thoughtful and meaningful gifts are awesome, and there is certainly a place for them.
So today, we wanted to focus on gift giving, but gift giving in a way that is considerate of the environment and of the people we are giving the gifts to.
Because Buy Nothing Day isn't solely about just not buying anything, it's about being conscious of the fact that consumerism creates mass destruction to ecosystems and creates terrible work environments for so many people.
With that being said, here are some ways to be a more conscious consumer this holiday season.
Stick to homemade
Homemade gifts are always appreciated and if it is useful, even better.
We made this homemade soup mix with ingredients we got at Bulk Barn. All you have to do is add ingredients into a crockpot, add water and poof, soup.
We added a Christmas tea towel onto the top and tied it with a rope we have reused over the years, and it looks great!
Stick to local
Not much for crafts and DIY's? Well buying local is another excellent option. Like the soup gift, we found a local company that makes cookies in a jar.
This is a great gift for those people who have little time to bake, but love to do so. This jar has everything portioned for easy baking.
We then used a wrap from Lush that we tied in a bow. This wrap is great as it's made from recycled materials and can be used over and over again.
Stick to ethical
Finding ethical, fair trade and socially conscious gifts is another route you can take in your gift giving.
We purchased this beautiful hand-woven basket from Ten Thousand Villages. Ten Thousand Villages sells only fair trade items, and they have a huge selection, like jewelry, coffee, and chocolates.
This basket is a little bit of an odd shape, so we also showed you that you could wrap it up using fabric as well.
Stick to recycling or upcycling
Not everything has to be brand new, sometimes its great to get creative with reusing items.
Gift wrapping is a great place to recycle or upcycle.
Take this brown paper bag we got from the Forks Trading company. It has a ton of cute little drawings on it that we cut out and glued onto a cardboard envelope that we kept from a package we ordered. This is a two for one steal as we were able to reuse the bag and the envelope for this cute wrapping.
Another option is using food boxes for wrapping smaller items. We combined a few smaller and oddly shaped gifts into this empty Quaker box and then covered it in brown paper.
This saves on you by not having to buy boxes as you can use what's already in your house or ask your friends and family to keep smaller boxes for you.
Stick to what you have
Finally, an important factor when it comes to gift giving is sticking to things you already have and making good use of them. This point kind of goes along with recycling and upcycling, but let us further explain.
We dug through our stuff at home to find items that could work. We found a stamp and a little paper cutter shaped like a tree.
For the paper cutter, we used it to make little gift tags, and they look great. We cut the trees out and used an old Ikea catalogue to give it some colour.
Then the little tree cutouts we will be saving for some green confetti for the holidays.
The stamp we love to use on the outside of brown paper to spice it up a little.
And finally, using greenery is another great option.
We are fortunate enough to have an evergreen in our backyard that we plucked a few branches off for some added dimensions.
So however you decide to give this winter, remember gift giving can be approached in a number of different ways, and we encourage you to look at a more sustainable option this holiday season.
Until next time, let's Create Simple.