Wonder why our dedication to eco-friendly products wanes during the holidays? You don’t have to look far to see artificial wreaths, mass-produced plastic bows, inflatable lawn decorations and energy-sapping lights, all of which demonstrate eco-indifference.
Perhaps it’s time to apply the three R’s of sustainability — reduce, reuse, recycle — in our holiday decorating.
“Use what you have, and if you don’t have enough, then branch out,” suggested David Pippin, adjunct professor of horticulture at J. Sargeant Reynolds Community College. “Bring out old decorations and make new combinations. Mix it up.”
During a Christmas Decor for the Home class held in partnership with Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden, Pippin inspired workshop participants to visit their attics as well as thrift stores and consignment shops before starting their holiday decorating.
“Whether it’s your old stuff or someone else’s, use it,” he said. Pippin turns sentimental into environmental as he regularly recycles old wreaths, leftover ribbons, antique ornaments and the like in his own personal decorating. Even for floral arrangements, Pippin encourages use of nontraditional holders that are on hand, such as a casserole dish, loaf pan or ordinary kitchen container.
“It just needs to be watertight if you’re using fresh greenery. And if it’s not the right color, spray (paint) it.”
Eco-savvy decorators also know to turn to nature for do-it-yourself holiday crafting. Pippin demonstrated how fresh-cut greenery, flowers and berry sprigs can be enhanced by juxtaposing nature’s “found” treasures, such as seed pods, pine cones, moss, wispy sticks and small, lichen-covered branches. Preserved botanicals, which are another eco-smart decorating option, are especially meaningful if harvested and dried from your spring or summer garden.
“After the holidays, recycle the greenery and flowers to the compost pile,” Pippin said. “Just don’t forget to save the rest for next year.”
Article excerpted from www2.timesdispatch.com
Christmas and New Year is around the corner, this is another good chance to be creative in decoration. Save the money and go for eco-friendly decoration.