Alison Curtis: Forget about a white Christmas, let’s make this year a green one

Sustainability is certainly a buzzword now! And more and more online personalities, brands and shops are labelling themselves ‘Green’.

Alison Curtis: Forget about a white Christmas, let’s make this year a green one

Sustainability is certainly a buzzword now! And more and more online personalities, brands and shops are labelling themselves ‘Green’.

This past week lots of independent Irish brands and designers came together for Pop Up shops around the country aimed at promoting their merchandise and angling to get consumers to buy Irish rather than from huge international brands on Black Friday.

Some even encouraged people to boycott it all together and buy absolutely nothing. The reality is Christmas is a time of year when we want to be indulgent. We want nice things, we want gifts and to give gifts. We want to eat loads of decadent food that we wouldn’t really touch the rest of the year.

So to try and curtail all of this during the holiday period I don’t think is going to go down to well, with anyone.

So rather than aiming to cut back everything I think we should look to buy better, not necessarily less. There are so many Irish brands producing ethically sourced and beautifully put together toys, beauty products and clothes that you could choose to buy from instead of buying from the usual bigger brands.

Some of my favourites for kids clothing are Fauna Kids (faunakids.ie) Nadia began designing kids clothes while on maternity leave and now has a range of lovely organic cotton baby gros, jumpers and pyjamas.

Chaos and Harmony (chaosandharmony.ie) is an amazing online shop that sells ethically sourced clothes, unusual home decor pieces as well as clothes for mom and dad. There are a good few one-stop shops for all sorts of green wonders but my favourite at the moment is The Kind Co (thekind.co).

They have a huge selection of gifts from kitchen ware, skin care, home decor and at the moment have a drop down menu for special ethically-sourced Christmas presents, including wonderful ideas for kids. I picked up a stunning handmade board game for my daughter, Joan, from a Hungarian company called Marbushka Toy Manufactory with hand painted pieces.

Two good places to check out clothes for the dudes in your life are The Grown Clothing Company (grown.ie) run by three firefighters who want to help people reduce their plastic intake. They sell a nice range of trees and jumpers and for every one bought they plant a tree.

Also, Dublin-based Fresh Cuts Clothing (freshcutsclothing.com) also sell their wares online and they import from some of the best known eco-friendly brands for both men and women like Armed Angels and Dedicated, two brands I adore. Another Irish made ethically-sourced clothing brand I think I now own pretty much everything from is Theo & George (theoandgeorge.com) If you wanted to spend a bit more on a quality cashmere sweater or gorgeous blazer they are definitely ones to consider buying from.

As far as beauty and skincare products go there are a plethora of Irish names to choose from such as Kinvara Skincare, Pestle and Mortar, Seavite, Voya, Burren Perfumery and Green Angel — all have lovely ranges and many of them use only Irish sources ingredients.

I feel better buying from independent Irish brands knowing that in the process you are supporting a small business.

I think we can all go a little greener this Christmas and not loose any of the festive indulgence that we all deserve!

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