Happy New Year from The Shop to you!
It has been an incredible year at The Shop and we are so grateful for all of the incredible people we have met and are thrilled to think about the impact our little vintage boutique has made thus far. On that note, we wanted to share some sustainable resolution's ideas for the new year-- hopefully these won’t be too overwhelming - we tried to keep it easy peezy.
If we all commit to doing just one of these things we can continue to make a difference in our communities and beyond.
- Buy only things you need.
This is really tough for many of us, especially living during the age of consumerism.
One of the best ways to practice sustainability is to buy only things you need, as you need them. Buying things as you need them allows you to be more mindful with your shopping and hopefully results in more meaningful trips to the store for things you need and not just things you want. (Even though we will never argue with treating ourselves!!)
- Shop secondhand more throughout the year.
Shopping second hand helps divert often wearable clothes, usable furniture, and other perfectly usable items from landfills. It also helps lower consumption of resources, particularly water, since you are reclaiming goods that are already in the marketplace.
With less consumption of resources, it also means less waste being produced which is always good for our environments. Check out this article that talks about the benefits of shopping second hand. Try it out, see if it takes you that much longer? How much you can save? Try doing this at least 1x per month. This can be anything! I buy tissue paper/decorations at Goodwill, our daughters clothes at Once Upon a Child and for high end clothes check out Kouture Consignment or Rags in Cherry Creek.
- Start swapping traditional products with non-toxic + low waste ones.
A great place to start with this is with cleaning supplies, beauty supplies, etc. when one product or supply runs out, swap it with a non-toxic/low waste alternative. Check out some of these swaps below:
Sponges for Loofah Sponges- Instead of using a synthetic plastic sponge, opt for a loofah sponge that is an all natural alternative made from the loofah gourds! They grow like squash, but their insides are a webbed structure that give the same experience of a loofah. You can buy natural loofah sponges online, locally, or you can grow your own! Be sure to check out your bulk stores for them locally.
Dish Soap for Dish Soap Concentrate- A lot of the dish soap we buy can be upwards of 90% water in plastic packaging. Instead of buying a new bottle of dish soap every time, switch to a non-toxic, low waste dish soap concentrate. You mix with water in your own bottles and voila!
Hand Soap for Refillable or Bar Soap- Instead of purchasing a new bottle of hand soap every time, one of the easiest swaps is to buy refillable soap from a bulk store or switch to bar soap. A non-toxic brand of course!
Beauty Products from Aillea- I just swapped all of my beauty supplies and picked up everything I needed at Aillea in Cherry Creek.
Zero Market- This is my favorite place to shop for household supplies like hand soap, cleaning supplies, sponges, etc.
- Skip the shipping, buy things locally.
Buying products locally within your community is one of the best ways to be more sustainable in your day to day life. Local goods often need little transportation which cuts down on their carbon footprint tremendously.
Locally purchasing items also directly invests that money back into your local economy as well (even if it’s at a big box store!). And local selections can often be better than the ones you can find online depending on what you are looking for.
Need more convincing? Check out this awesome page about why you should buy local. We have so many incredible options for great boutiques in Denver you just need to shop around and find your favorites. I am amazed at how many places there are that I didn’t know about that are right in my backyard. Ask us if you are looking for something specific or have a local business we should know about!
- Try to eat a meat-free meal once a week.
Have you ever heard of Meatless Mondays? The same principle applies, but we encourage you to pick any day of the week that works for you. By eating a meal without meat, you are saving over 100 gallons of water and it can reduce your carbon footprint by 8 pounds. For more information about Meatless Mondays and the environmental benefits of eating a meatless meal once a week, check out this page from CU. (Taylor’s Alma Mater!)
Note from Taylor: I promise you can do this very easily! I was a pescatarian for 8 years, vegan for almost a year and continue to try to eat at least one animal-free meal everyday, if you can skip the meat 1x a week you will be making a big impact with very little effort. And hopefully you can then move to 1x per day ;-)
- Start composting or growing some of your own food.
Composting is a great way to reduce your waste going to landfills AND it is great for your soil! Composting helps add organic matter back to the soil by breaking down food waste like veggie scraps, fruit scraps, etc. and turns it into nutrient rich matter that improves the health of your soil. Here is an article about the basics of composting.
If you live in Denver, the city of Denver now offers composting as a service and will continue to roll these services out to all areas in 2023. In addition to composting, there are tons of ways to start an herb garden indoors, as well as prep for a garden for the summer time starting now! Growing even a fraction of your own produce is a great way to be more sustainable in 2023. Sign up if you haven’t already. If you live in Denver, here is a LINK. I promise it will make you feel so good when you start seeing how much you can help just by tossing your food scraps and yard debris!
Which of these will you adopt as a resolution for 2023? Let us know!
And remember, the goal is not to be perfect! Perfection is often the obstacle to progress– it’s okay to forget sometimes or to buy new or to use old products, etc. There is always another opportunity and a chance to try again.
PS. My dream come true!!!! The City of Denver is no longer going to be offering bags in 2023-- make sure you bring your reusable ones every time you go shop!