Christmas is a time of fun, magic and festive chaos for the whole household. But once the full festivities get into full swing (and that to-do list gets longer and more stressful) it’s easy to resort to old habits rather than thinking of eco-friendly ways to have a green Christmas. Planning ahead can help give us time to work on minimising our impact on the planet – as well as taking some of the stress out of Christmas. So, we’ve set out a quick timeline to help you do just that.
- Work out a budget (and stick to it!): We’re all working with different incomes and with just two paydays left before Christmas, now’s a good time to decide on a budget for all your gifts, food and general festivities so you can spready the costs out.
- Start present planning: Make a list of everyone you need to shop for (including any children's’ teachers, work colleagues, your dog) and have a think about what gifts you think they’d truly love to receive – choose thoughtfully to make sure any resources used for gifts aren’t wasted. Friends with an adrenaline-junkie? Check out outdoor activity passes. Know a pampered prince or princess who loves their self-care routine? Scout out plastic-free, sustainable gifts like these. Looking to DIY gifts this year? Then it’s time to start getting in all the ingredients you’ll need for any soaps, biscuits, homemade festive booze… Whatever tickles your fancy!
- Get shopping early: Starting your shopping earlier will help take some of the pressure off when peak-shopping season hits. Plus, you won’t need to worry about any delivery delays either.
- Bake your Christmas cake: It’s best to get baking around two or three months before Christmas to give you plenty of time to let it mature and ‘feed’ your cake regularly as the big day approaches. Looking for a vegan recipe? We love this one by Domestic Gothess.
Luxury Bath Gift Set available at EcoVibe for £39.99. Shop here.
- Decorations: While it might be traditional to wait until advent to put your decorations up, there is no harm in planning ahead. Start thinking about your eco-friendly Christmas tree decorations, table decorations and crackers. We love decorations made from natural and biodegradable materials, like these.
- Present planning: Making your own gifts? Get started now so it’s not a last-minute scramble (again!) come December.
Biodegradable Red Christmas Holly Stocking available at EcoVibe for £9.99. Shop here.
- Double-check delivery times: Make sure to give yourself plenty of time for your cards and presents to arrive. When you choose slower deliveries and postal services, this allows companies to use the most efficient and environmentally friendly ways of delivering goods, whereas options such as next day delivery can force companies to send out trucks which aren’t at full capacity.
- Christmas cards: Sadly some holiday cards are still covered in glitter and come packaged in plastic. Made sure to seek out cards that are ideally made from recycled materials, are recyclable and fully compostable too. Looking to level up your cards this year? We love these seed Christmas cards.
- Start your meal preparation: Make a list of all the festive meals, platters and snacks you’re looking to snaffle over the festive break. Planning the food list in advance will give you more time to shop locally (if you can) or book your online green delivery slots. If you’re opting for a turkey this year, speak to your butchers in advance for the Christmas ordering dates.
- Prepare early where you can: Lots of Christmas food components can be prepared in advance, then frozen. Keep hold of any veggie scraps in the lead up to the big day to make your own stocks, if you’re a meat eater, boil your old meat bones for broth. Loads of other bits and bombs like stuffing and pies can all be prepared and frozen months in advance to simply defrost and heat up on the day itself. Psst! Looking for tips about how you can fight kitchen waste at Christmas? Check out our quick guide here.
Christmas Twine Set available at EcoVibe for £7.00. Shop here.
- Declutter your home: Now’s the time to tidy up, create space and begin your winter clean. As December hits, take the opportunity to organise, start to declutter and create space for your Christmas trees and decorations. Giving your home a good deep clean will help you create a tidy headspace as the big (and often stressful!) day approaches.
- Double check your gifts: Make sure you’ve not missed anyone off your list and double-check the family stockings are all looking fair and square. In case there’s anything missing, now’s the time to snap up as the final delivery date approaches.
- Ensure you have sufficient gift wrap, tape and tags. Choosing reusable wrapping paper great, or opt for recyclable paper that’s plastic free. Our top tip? While it’s always better to be prepared, don’t shy away from wrapping your pressies with newspaper – it’s a great way to reuse our planet’s precious resources.
By now, you should have all the Christmas preparation ready! So, sit down, put your feet up and enjoy a large glass of mulled wine or Fairtrade hot chocolate.
Did we miss anything? Got any top tips for keeping your Christmas green? Let us know in the comments below!