Going green & going local

Small things can make a huge difference, especially when it comes to the environment. I’ve always been conscious of my actions and choices, but a year ago I pledged to make more of an effort. To educate myself. To take action.

This also went hand in hand with containing to support local/independent businesses where possible. This is something I’ve always done but have definitely increased in the past year. Afterall, I run an independent business too and depend on orders from my local community to keep my business going. How can I ask for the support of others if I don’t support them too?

I hope you enjoy my little list of life changes, and it sparks you to make a change too or say ‘I do that too!’ <3

My floristry business. What changes have I made in the past year? …

  • I bought a brown bin for all of my floristry waste to make sure it’s all recycled. I did recycle some of it before, but not all, so I feel much better about this change!
  • A lot of the packaging from the local flower market is unfortunately non-recyclable plastic, so I try and opt for the paper-wrapped bunches where possible.
  • All of my floral bouquets are wrapped in recyclable brown paper and will be until I settle on some decorative papers/wraps that can be recycled. I didn’t previously use any other wraps BUT thought it was worth mentioning in this post.
  • My hat boxes now contain 100% recyclable/biodegradable products – from the flowers to the box and foam. I eventually want to go foam-free as it’s still not the best choice, so I’m working on new ways to do my boxes.

Buying from local/independent suppliers. What changes have I made in the past year? …

  • I buy all of my cards from Etsy – they can usually be personalised, are pretty much always made from quality/recycled card, and you can find things you can’t get anywhere else!
  • I buy as many gifts from independent brands/retailers as possible – I use Etsy a lot of the time or visit/order from independent stores. From maple syrups small batches by family-run businesses, to handcrafted plant pots and British-grown plants, there’s literally nothing I can’t find. Very valid and understandable reasons for using Amazon or similar companies are having limited time and there’s more choice. But I find indie companies can generally do next day delivery 99% of the time, and there’s not much I haven’t been able to source.

Food, drink, and all things kitchen. What changes have I made in the past year?

  • I go to independents for most of my sit in and takeout coffees. I’m really lucky to have an amazing independent coffee place just up the road from me. It’s so lovely going somewhere where they know your name and your order. Now, I’m not saying I NEVER get a Costa, but it’s rare these days and I go independent where I can. A lot of my weddings are up in the Dales and I love stopping at little local cafes when I’m on the road.
  • I’m vegetarian. I’ve never been big into meat anyway, but made and official foodie change in June 2019 and haven’t looked back. I personally don’t push my fully veggie/vegan lifestyle on people, but I think even if you cut back on meat just a teeny bit it can actually make a HUGE difference to your health and the environment. You don’t have to go all in to make a difference.
  • Avoiding dairy. I’m lactose-intolerant which gives me just another reason to stay away from regular dairy. I recently signed up to receive a carton of oat milk every week from an independent dairy. It’s no more expensive than buying it from the supermarket, but my money goes to a family-run business instead. I do have cheese occasionally but it’s my one dairy treat, which I will eventually cut out entirely.
  • Avoiding plastic straws. I now use washable metal straws or paper straws only. No plastic straws in this house or out and about!
  • Food storage. I use eco-foil which is not only recyclable but also bio-degradable. My next move is to get some of those vegan wax food/container wraps! My containers are all made from recycled plastics.

Health and beauty. What changes have I made in the past year? …

  • Vegan and cruelty-free make up. Did you know that not all cruelty-free health and beauty products are actually vegan? This was news to me and like many others I just made the assumption! I now only buy from health and beauty brands that have both logos on their packaging and use packaging that is recycled and/or can be recycled. Drugstore/more budget brands like E.l.f, NYX, GOSH, B Makeup, Barry M, and Revolution I believe have 100% vegan and cruelty-free product ranges.
  • Biodegradable face wipes. I’m currently transitioning from face wipes to a product-based make up removal routine, and at the moment I’ve switched to only biodegradable face wipes until I find the right thing for my skin. I didn’t even know these existed until I stumbled across them one day. Now I don’t buy any others, and won’t be buying any more face wipes very soon.

Tha above is a really great start, but there’s still so much more I can do. I’m definitely not perfect, but you don’t have to be perfect to make an impact.

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