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Tell Whirli your tips for little ways you can make Christmas more eco-friendly: £200 voucher prize

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  • I absolutely love whirli and I have recommended it countless times.
    My top tip when using the site for your order is making you use the correct search filters for your desired age range and hide toys you’ve had previously. That way you get to see the latest toys available for your family and your child’s age. Happy renting!
  • We have been reusing gift bags for several years and the kids make gift tags from last year's Christmas cards. We are giving garden gifts where we can - shrubs - bulbs - bee bombs and most importantly only buy the food you will be sure you'll eat
  • edited Nov 9, 2021 8:36AM
    My tips for little ways I make Christmas a bit more eco-friendly -
    - Make & bake as presents: We use apples from our apple tree to make cider, we make pork pies each year (and reuse tins each year), we make chilli chutney (packaged in reused jam jars) & we bake Christmas biscuits (again reusing the tins each year). It’s become a bit of a tradition and our family ask each year for us to make the same things, and send back the tins in the new year so we can reuse them.
    - Use brown paper to wrap presents: We decorate them we Christmas themed ink stamps and use rustic brown string tied round them. This means all the wrapping can go in the recycling and there is very little waste. 
    - Reuse gift bags: over the years we’ve gotten so many, they now bounce around family & friends each year and only get retired/binned if they are too broken or tatty. They last a good few years! This is especially good for bottle bags!
    - Buy preloved Christmas clothes: the kids grow up so quick! This year I’ve bought a bundle of preloved Christmas clothes from Facebook marketplace. My little girl will wear them through December and once the festive season is over I’ll put them back on market place or gift them to charity so they can have another Christmas being worn/loved by a different child. 
    Ask family/ friends to buy our little girl one gift: it’s our little girl’s first Christmas. I’ve asked grandparents and other family members to try to buy something she needs or will use lots. I’ve been really explicit that it does not need to be new, pre-loved items in good condition are definitely preferred when possible. We’re really fortunate that our little one doesn’t really want for anything so I’m keen to make sure that we can avoid “plastic tat” that could end up in a landfill quite quickly. 
  • Reuse the Christmas tree  and decorations every year
    Buy charitable toys or trade toys with my family members that don't use it anymore.
    Reuse wrapping paper and boxes.
    Grow my own vegetables in my garden because I love gardening.
    Food that has been leftover can be given to family members to take and eat at their own homes.

  • Quite a few years ago, I wrapped some shoe boxes with wrapping paper and we keep them in the loft and bring out each year as an eco friendly way to save of gift wrap each year. I'm amazed with how long they've lasted - around 6 or 7 years now I reckon! And still going strong. We simply pop presents inside and the kids know to open the box rather than rip off the wrapping paper as they want to help the environment too! I also save packaging wrap throughout the year to use in place of gift wrap too - things like tissue paper and that brown paper that is stuffed into parcels when they are delivered sometimes. No-one in the family has ever complained as they still look nice all wrapped up like that and we avoid all the glittering paper and cards that can't be recycled. 
  • Choose an FSC approved Christmas tree preferably from a local retailer & make sure you recycle it after to use as bark chippings. I actually bought my own shredder this year so I can shred all my garden cuttings myself & use them as mulch for my garden.
    Choose organic toiletries as gifts.
    I use holly & ivy from my own garden as decorations & LED fairy lights which are more environmentally friendly.
    Buy Christmas cards which are sustainably sourced or made from recycled paper.
    Make your own Christmas cracker using the inserts from toilet rolls or kitchen rolls & cover them with recycled paper & sprigs of holly.
    Try more meat free, organic recipes to help the environment & avoid food wastage. Use leftovers to make meals & compost your peelings. I have a brilliant hot bin composter which creates your own organic compost in a short time to save money on buying compost from the garden centre or supermarket.
  • Second hand gifts are a good idea, we have filled a tote bag with second hand books for my daughter already.
    We will be also be giving experience type gifts to my parents and my sister; afternoon tea or theatre tickets were a couple of ideas.
    Our Christmas food is coming from a farm shop a couple of miles from us too.
  •  We tend to get Dad to make some,  I try to make some go to the Thrift shop where we can swap and buy and we have swapped with the thrift shop, and as the children use to get to much we let them open all the presents on christmas morning, and then we put some in the loft and bring them down 3 months later and put some of the toys that we left down at christmas up in the loft we just swap them around, so all the toys get used
  • Wrap presents up reusable materials
  • my girl loves art & crafts, so instead of buying new decorations and christmas cards, we upcycle materials like cardboard, packaging, bottles, cans, textile to create our own christmas decorations and christmas cards every year.
    we always ask for people's wishlist before picking a christmas present to make sure it will be something the recevier really wants, so that our present won't end up being unused or passed on as unwanted gift.
    instead of gift wrapping, we put gifts into reusable gift bags, or sometimes we just don't gift wrap it and explain to the receiver that we want to be mroe eco-friendly.
  • We re-use all our Christmas decorations every year & we make gift tags from old Christmas cards  and re-use gift bags where we can. We have the same table cloth, trays, runners for Christmas dinner every year and if our Pjs and festive jumpers still fit, we wear them again! 
  • For the first time this year I will be using fabric scraps (clean and pressed) to wrap presents, string or ribbon threaded with a gift tag cut from used cards.  On the back I will request the recipient to use again as a 'gift to the planet'
  • We have always brought the main presents second hand, anything from large bundles of lego to gadgets. Once used we then sell them on giving the money to our son to put into his bank account to save in case there is something he really wants new he can buy it himself. 
  • we reuse christmas cards into gift tags to use the following year, the rest of the card is placed in our paper/cardboard bin. So eveything is recycled, my daughter also does this with her family now.
  • I have bought my children bikes so they can have exercise and it saves using the car.All of their clothes that do not fit I have given to charity shops to be reused.I have also given toys and books away on free social media sites for other children to have use out of.We have the same Christmas tree and stockings we have had for years.I am actively looking each day for new things to do to help save the planet.My fruit and vegetables I plan on buying will be from a local farmer,this way I can also try and support the smaller businesses.
  • As a doting granny, I’ve given myself the challenge of scouring charity shops for my grandchildren’s gifts. Supporting the charity as well as using preloved items. 
  • I've bought some 2nd hand toys for my little one, think it's important to recycle perfectly good things. 
  • I look out for second hand books and toys in really good condition. Lots of people donate picture books that have never been looked at. My son’s favourite ever Christmas present was when he was 19 months old and Father Christmas brought him an enormous box of metal toy cars. I’d bought them on EBay for about £12 all in. They weren’t all in great condition and some I even recognised as the same as my brother had when he was little so they were quite old, but little children don’t care about that. He was absolutely over the moon with them.

    I’ve also bought brown parcel paper and potato printed stars on it to make eco friendly wrapping paper, and I re-use the cards we were sent the year before by cutting them down into gift tags.
  • I love making something lovely for Christmas from reusable materials and products. Every Christmas I would reuse Christmas cards, old calendars and wrapping paper from previous years. We cut them into pieces and shapes, stick on boxes and make beautiful containers to put our Christmas gift. I shop in charity shops for toys and gifts and make own decorations for home. I hate to see anything to go waste and after all my children have great time doing their own art and crafts for festive season.
  • I’m going to use scarves to wrap my presents this year- it’s eco friendly and doubles up as an extra little gift 🎁 
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