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10 Eco-friendly Tips for the Holidays

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It’s time for some eco-friendly tips for the upcoming holidays. Christmas is considered the most wasteful time of the year. Did you know that the U.S. alone produces an extra 25 million tons of garbage during the holidays from Thanksgiving to New Year?

Extra waste includes the gift wrappers, ribbons, Christmas cards, decorations, and other stuff that people throw away after the holidays. If only people would learn to reuse or recycle these things, our planet will be much better off. For example, if families just reuse two feet of ribbon, think about the 38,000 miles of ribbon saved. If individuals re-use gift wraps, such as gift bags and wrapping paper, imagine how much paper will be saved.

Have you ever thought about how you can personally help reduce Christmas' carbon footprint? By taking simple steps to make the holidays more eco-friendly, it doesn’t mean that Christmas will be less special or memorable. It would actually make a good impact on your pocket, the environment, and the people around you.

If you would like to take part in this earth-friendly movement, then you’ll want to take a look at these awesome tips you can adopt during the holidays. Check them out below:

Window Christmas Card by Lisa Fulmer
Window Christmas Card by Lisa Fulmer | Source

Christmas Card Recycling

Tip #1: Turn them into handmade Christmas cards

Don’t throw away the Christmas cards you receive. Recycle them by reusing the decorative part of the cards. Just buy a pack of thin card and adhesive. Cut off the back part of the card and mount the graphic design on a blank card. Fold in half and write your Christmas greetings inside.

Make the cards more personal and fun by adding some glitter or star decals. This is a great activity for children who enjoy doing arts and crafts. See an example on the right of a pretty handmade recycled Christmas card.

Tip #2: Turn them to Christmas decors

There are many recycled Christmas card crafts you can do that makes good Christmas decors. Martha Stewart has tutorials on making Christmas ornamental balls and holiday card monogram labels.

You can also simply make Christmas card garlands. Just cut the Christmas cards into triangular pieces, tape them to a string and hang them up.

Recycled Christmas Card into Decors

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Tip #3: Reuse envelopes

For every Christmas card, you get an envelope. You can also reuse these when you need to send your handmade Christmas cards. Just buy special “sticker labels” to cover up the old details.

Tip #4: Send digital Christmas cards or e-cards

To reduce the quanity of Christmas cards sent each year, you can opt to go digital. Design your own greeting cards on the computer and send it to people that you regularly communicate with via email. Limit the paper greeting cards you send to only your family and closest friends.

Recycling Christmas Gift Wrapping Paper

Wrapping paper is often used once and thrown away. But if you’re really careful when opening gifts, you can reuse the wrapping paper again. Gently remove the adhesive tape and fold or roll the paper neatly before keeping it.

Here are some ways to recycle gift wrappers:

Tip #5 Reuse them for wrapping gifts again

You can iron out the wrinkled part of wrapper before using. Or just choose portions of the wrapping paper that have no wrinkles. You can fold on the old folds to be able to use more of the paper.

Tip #6 Reuse them for your craft projects

Here are some craft ideas you can use for old gift wrappers:

  • Making paper beads which you can make into a mosaic of any pattern you like or make them into necklace or bracelet.
  • Use them for embellishing greeting cards, posters and bookmarks.
  • Use them as matting for picture frames.
  • Cut them into squares or circles and use them as box labels.
  • They’re great for making origami.

Tip #7 Make them into handmade paper

You can pretty much use any paper for making handmade paper. Then you can use what you make as stationery or wrapping paper once again. The colorful design of the wrapping paper will add extra nice details to handmade paper.

How to Make Recycled Handmade Paper

Tip #8 Reuse them to make money or cash envelopes

If you like giving cash as gifts for the holidays, you can use old Christmas wrapping paper to make colorful little envelopes. You can also use the envelopes for your own personal use like when budgeting your finances.

How to Make Money Envelopes

Tip #9 Use other recyclable materials for wrapping your Christmas presents

You can use old newspaper, colorful magazines, brown paper bag, and old maps as gift wrapper. You can even use plastic cups and bottles to wrap gifts. If you’re buying new wrapping paper, look out for those made of recycled paper.

Tip #10 Reuse ribbons and bows

When you receive gifts, be sure to save the ribbons and bows. You can use them again for embellishing presents or for your craft projects like bookmarks or scrapbooks.

How to make paper cups gift boxes

Hopefully, you can use some of these tips to make Christmas celebration this year more eco-friendly.

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