How to Create a Conscious Christmas It’s that time of year again when the classic crooners start, the smell of mince pies and mulled wine lingers in the air and we start to ready the house for the festive season! Many are anticipating a maximalist Christmas with bigger lights, bigger trees and all out glitz to bring family and friends together again and who can blame us after the last two years. However there are ways to create a magical but more conscious Christmas this year; we have put together some ideas to help you make your home, Christmas feast and gifting as environmentally consciously as possible. 'Lilac Pink' Hall with Christmas Decorations Plastic-Free Decorations To be conscious this Christmas swap tinsel for winter greenery, we love holly, ivy, mistletoe and pine cones, all of which can be foraged in gardens , local woodland areas or bought in garden centres and flower shops. Edward’s top tip is to use ivy over paintings, berries from holly can cause havoc behind your art and mark your paintwork and flooring. To display flowers and greenery do not use any floral foam or oasis which of course is full of plastics, is non-recyclable, non-biodegradable and toxic for both humans and animals. Instead use vases in some displays with a little water and keep extra foliage and berries in a bucket of water in the shed or garage which can be freshened and topped up over the festive period. Happy Crackers made from leftover fabrics and papers Happy Crackers made from leftover fabrics and papers Cocolulu hand painted candles Cocolulu linen scalloped napkins Crackers produce a lot of waste at Christmas time so try and source your crackers from sustainable brands or ones that are plastic free, we love these reusable ones made from Liberty remnants Happy Crackers. Not only are these crackers not harmful to our planet but they are also utterly gorgeous! They come in a selection of colours and prints perfect for all sorts of festive spreads, you may need to out your name down for 2022 as they are flying out of the shop! We can’t get enough of the hand crafted products by Cocolulu in particular their candles and exquisite napkins. Cocolulu hand paint candles with beautiful motifs and they have got some special Christmas designs with ivy, holly and doves. Conscious Gifting Hum London create the most gorgeous hand painted lampshades. Hermione explains that the Hum London journey began with a fruitless search for some lampshades for my her flat, and so with time on her hands at the beginning of lockdown last year, she decided to explore painting some instead. Hermione said “I enjoyed the process so much, I started experimenting with other designs and patterns. Fast forward a few months and after lots of research with my sister, Ellie, into the most suitable (and beautiful!) paints, we launched a collection of designs that I hand paint onto cotton shades in various shapes and sizes.” Willa Hilfriech makes unique silver jewellery creating personal designs by drawing onto wax – her jewellery is always intricately hand carved and cast in silver. Willa offers a certain amount of commissions per month and you work with her to create your perfect piece. She is so talented and can make any idea come to life from skylines, animals, names or scenes she has an incredible eye for detail and creative mind. The perfect thoughtful present for friends or family. If your looking at a new outfit to buy someone (or be bought for!) then check out our friends Aspiga. This sustainable fashion brand create an amazing range of clothes from summer dresses, beautiful bright knitwear to the most stylish cord suits. Established in 2005 Aspiga is a responsible fashion brand who continue to lead the way in sustainable and ethical fashion – putting people and planet first. They partner with artisans and suppliers, primarily in Kenya and India, to create contemporary and stylish clothing collections for women and men using natural, organic and sustainable materials. Hum London hand painted lampshades Hum London hand painted lampshades Willa Hilfreich jewellery Willa Hilfreich jewellery Aspiga new King's road shop featuring our Turquoise paint Aspiga Cord Suit Looking for something for you little people but don’t want to get plastics toys – look no further! Our favourite plastic free toy company Pom Pom make beautifully crafted toys for children with no plastic whatsoever. We love their climbing frame which has been made colourful using our natural paints, with colours curated by the brilliant Salvesen Graham, which are of course safe for little people. Elegant recycling has never been so true when its comes to the brand Elvis & Kresse. In 2005 they had a chance encounter with the London Fire Brigade where they learnt that London’s damaged decommissioned hoses were headed to landfill. Elvis & Kresse was born and mounted a rescue! Ever Since 2005 Elvis & Kresse have been rescuing raw materials, like these hoses, transforming them into luxury lifestyle accessories, and donating 50% of profits back to charities. The Great English Outdoors is a shop based in near by Hay-on-wye with an inspiring online shop; they make and source beautiful things from natural materials. Here you can find all sorts of wool products from sheep skin rugs, antique tapestry blankets to gorgeous woollen jumpers. Pom Pom wooden climbing frame, painted with our natural colours Pom Pom wooden climbing frame, painted with our natural colours Decommissioned fire brigade hoses ready for recycling at Elvis & Kresse Elvis & Kresses 'Fire & Hide Square tote' bag in Black The Great English Outdoors beautiful knitwear The Great English Outdoors natural gifts for everyone If you are looking to spruce up your own home or someone else’s with some conscious colour then have a look at Wicklewood whether you are after statement textiles or quirky home accessories, there is something for everyone. Frustrated by the lack of fun, affordable design options that change with each season, mood or move, Rosie and Caroline launched Wicklewood to provide people with an easy, colourful interior design solution. Wicklewood source their products from talented artisans from around the world who use classic techniques to bring their designs to life and the colours of the world to your home. If you missed our inspiring Colour Guides with them do click here for issues 1 and 2. This Christmas you can buy some new art whilst donating to charity! ‘With Nature and a Camera’ is a photography exhibition of works by pioneering wildlife photographer Cherry Kearton. The exhibition will be showing at the Royal Geographical Society from 14th December – 20th December. So if you are planning a family outing around one of the museums or some skating, do pop in as they would to see you and entry is free. The works are available to buy and 100% of the profits will be donated to Fauna & Flora International conservation charity. Head to the exhibition or its website to enquire! Wicklewood Christmas shop Wicklewood Christmas shop Cherry Kearton prints for sale via www.withnatureandacamera.co.uk Cherry Kearton prints for sale via www.withnatureandacamera.co.uk Local businesses have had a tough time during the Covid crisis, which is why it is more important than ever that we all do everything we possibly can to support our local businesses this Christmas, if you are buying books go to you local bookshop rather than buying off Amazon or buy someone an experience you can do together like visiting an exhibition, doing a pottery class or an online class from Create Academy. Wrapping with love Let’s go for plastic free wrapping this year in an effort to have a more conscious Christmas. Wrapping paper is often not recyclable, especially if covered in glitter or is extra shiny, although all these bright packages may look nice for a minute under the tree, we think its not worth it for the negative effect they have on the environment. Who says natural and plastic free wrapping can’t also look gorgeous though! Sophie’s Ribbons offer a wonderful selection of ribbons and recyclable kraft paper is an array of different colours. Now in their 16th year of business, Sophie’s Ribbons work closely with a factory in Turkey where they make up the ribbons to their designs. Go ‘au natural’! A good tip to cut down on plastic is not using Sellotape, instead wrap your presents and keep the paper on with some ribbon or garden twine that can be reused or repurposed after and add a sprig of something lovely from the garden. Or if this sounds a little time consuming try a paper tape that is recyclable or biodegradable. Sophie's Ribbons Kraft paper and ribbon Recyclable kraft paper with natural string and berries, for the perfect natural wrapping Festive Food & Drink Searching for your perfect Christmas cocktail, we might have found the one for you! Nearby to our paint HQ, in the rolling fields of a Herefordshire farm, grows a tiny currant. Rarely seen and little known, this succulent fruit is harvested under the summer sun and carefully crafted into the very finest British Cassis by our friends White Heron drinks. They use a technique similar to winemaking in order to perfectly capture the intensity of freshly picked British blackcurrants. Once the blackcurrant juice has fermented naturally with champagne yeast, they blend it with a little vodka to fortify and add sugar to bring out the rich fruity flavour. See their website for the most delicious Christmas cocktails. Alternatively if you are seeking an alcohol free Christmas tipple Seedlip is on a mission to change the way the world drinks with the highest quality non-alcoholic options. Founder Ben Branson says “Ultimately, regardless of why you’re not drinking, we’re proud to offer you the choice of a flavourful, sophisticated, adult option.” Ben and Edward collaborated earlier this year in creating a limited edition bottle design, it was a pioneering meeting of plant based minds, read more here. British Cassis by White Heron Drinks British Cassis & Framboise by White Heron Drinks Seedlip Spice and a winter Seedlip cocktail 'Slow and Steady' Seedlip Spice and their recycled glass nhighball glass and mycelium (mushroom) packaging When it comes to Christmas cakes we think Simply Delicious Cake Co make the best out there! Milly Hunter founded the Simply Delicious Cake Co in 2002 at her kitchen table. She lives and works in South Shropshire with her husband Archie. After eighteen years, the business is still just the way they like it – a small family run artisan bakery. Their staff are the heart and soul of the busy business, with a lot of fun and laughter, they help make cakes fly out of the do .You will find their delicious handmade cakes are just the ticket for any reason or season and they can organise delivery all beautifully packaged up to any food lovers. Neal’s Yard Dairy make and sell delicious cheese from all over the UK. Their mission is to Improve British Cheese. They sell a range of cheeses, made by people they know and trust, and they are always looking for ways to improve. They have some great Christmas selections, explaining how each pack varies for number of people and preference. This Christmas will be difficult for many traders, and we are seeing an increase in the numbers of companies falling day by day, which means getting out to support local businesses and supporting independents has never been more important. It also important when it comes to food and drink to buy what you need to make sure you don’t have lots left over which goes to waste. Simply Delicious Cake - Round Christmas Cake in a Gift Box Simply Delicious Cake - Chocolate Cherry and Hazelnut Christmas Cake Neal's Yard Dairy - Christmas Selection Neal's Yard Dairy - Christmas Selection We hope our little guide to a more conscious Christmas is helpful in all of your festive preparations. We always try and support local and small businesses, especially during this time of year and after a difficult 2 years during the pandemic. Follow and watch our Instagram and social channels for more inspiring Christmas interiors and if you haven’t seen some of Pinterest pages, please do see our festive fever here. We shall soon be launching our all new gift vouchers for our popular Colour Consultancy so you can give our bespoke and expert advice either in home or online to the interiors lover in your life or just someone in a colour conundrum hoping to create their dream room or home. In case you missed our latest room inspiration do see our Le Christmas C’est Chic blog.