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Wednesday, 4 June 2014

Shopping with a Conscience

Shopping Again

It seems that nearly everything I need requires an eco-ethical decision. For example, I am refashioning some of my wardrobe and need more thread, but of course it is pretty much polyester, with a plastic reel, so I decided that I would try buying some from my local charity shops, so picking up second hand, partly used reels. At least they are not new plastic - except for the bags they come in.

I also wanted some black lace to finish one garment that I have refashioned. Instead of buying new, I have picked up a second hand lace skirt, so dilemma; I'm having a year without buying any clothes, and it is not natural fibre. Sometimes I just have to focus not on failing at what I am trying to do, but on what I am achieving. In the end, it is better to try and fail, and learn by my mistakes, than not to try at all.

Honest, I just bought it for the lace - but won't waste what is left - I feel a shorter, less flouncy version may appear.

Hopefully soon there will be pics of the finished products.

I also wanted to buy a bereavement arrangement yesterday ...but the florist didn't have a single option that didn't involve plastic. In the end I chose an arrangement in a cardboard box, lined with plastic. I have recycled these before by giving them away with home grown flowers, so hope the recipient might do something with it too. Next time, I will take more time and buy the flowers if I don't have anything appropriate and make something myself, or try to find a green florist or take something other than flowers... I'm going to email the florist back and nicely suggest she looks into green marketing.

I just googled environmentally friendly floral arrangements - a great resource for the local florist!

Another purchase that came with plastic was a punnet of plants. Now mostly I grow things from seeds, but this time have missed putting in broccoli. I reuse the punnets though, often giving them away with extra seedlings. 

Little ways to cut out plastic

Give up chewing gum - it is plastic you are chewing on! when I was picking plastic out of the mangroves I came across a wad of chewed gum that did not look like it was going to break down any time soon.

Be aware that those face and body scrubs with little exfoliating beads - those beads are plastic! They are then washed into the waste water system. Let alone that they are in a plastic container. Our teenager was shocked when I told her about the beads and is happy to use my handmade soap now.

When ordering products online - ask them to not use plastic wrap please.

Get off mailing lists for brochures (ie Farmers and Spotlight). Every time I get a piece of junk mail I leave it on the computer so that I remember to contact them and ask them to stop mailing things out. We get pretty much no junk mail now. 

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