Author: Liam Taylor
“Homemade Christmas hampers make the best gifts, you can fill it with bulk finds or DIY goodies.”
On this point, we couldn’t agree more with Planet Ark ambassador and zero waste warrior Anita Vandyke. Not only are homemade hampers more environmentally friendly by reusing and repurposing items that would otherwise have ended up as waste, they also allow you to add your own personal touch and creative flair to an item that can often end up looking very generic when store-bought.
So how do you create the ideal Christmas hamper?
Your first point of call for finding the perfect Christmas basket has to be your own home! Have a look through the garage, basement and closets for an old basket, bucket or container. Remember, it doesn’t have to be pretty at first because there’s heaps of ways to jazz up whatever you find with other bits and pieces. If you really don’t have anything suitable lying around, head down to your local reuse centre such as Reverse Garbage in Sydney where they are sure to have something you can use.
Making your hamper pretty might be the most fun and creative part of this project, depending on what you’re into. Find some patterned or embroidered textiles that are not being used in the house, grab some flowers or leaves from the garden or use last year’s decorations or wrapping paper. Whatever you decide to use, get creative and have fun with the exercise. There’s no one right way to do it and sometimes the most special gifts are the ones that look a bit out there!
Now for the final step, filling that beautiful hamper with all kinds of sustainable goodies. Just a few ideas from Anita Vandyke include seasonal fruits and vegetables, bulk loose-leaf teas, homemade personal care products like body scrubs and face masks, homemade infused oils, homemade cookies and much, much more. There’s no limit to what you should or shouldn’t include except the size of the hamper, so go crazy. A helpful tip is to stock up on different types of glass jars as they make excellent containers for your sustainable goodies.
To take a look at Anita’s beautiful zero waste Christmas hamper, click here. For more zero waste tips from this amazingly creative individual with a mind for sustainability and minimalism, check out Anita’s Zero Waste blog. It’s full of helpful tips, hints and tricks that can help you have a happy holiday period with minimal waste!
For more tips check out Planet Ark’s Holiday Hacks for Living Large with a Small Footprint.
Liam is Planet Ark's Communications Coordinator. Prior to joining Planet Ark Liam spent his time studying global environmental issues, travelling Southeast Asia on the cheap and working for a sustainable property management company in Bali, Indonesia.