The benefits of a green Hallowe'en.
Hallowe'en is an excellent opportunity to put your creative skills to use as we create costumes, design decorations and share out treats. The season characterised by the orange pumpkins, bright sparklers and all things spooky is also a time to think green. When decorating and designing, we can often overlook the enormous volumes of waste produced during this Autumn festival.
At Re-Gen, we've processed millions of tonnes of waste and have some great tips to address your Hallo-waste.
A monster expense.
In the lead up to Hallowe'en, £320 million is spent on decorations, treats and more in Britain alone. Amazingly, 1 in 6 people will shell out more than £50 on a holiday that falls just weeks before Christmas. So, our challenge to you is to take stock first and hold off hitting high streets or online retailers. Your home could contain so much of what you need for Halloween, provided you are ready to get creative.
In the run-up to Halloween, your waste could have the potential to help you save on decorations and costumes. Given that the UK will spend upwards of £25m on pumpkins alone, any saving can help.
What to wear
Plan your costume and those of family members and think about how to create your ideal look. While you may not have a complete costume a home, old clothing could add to your outfit or help accessorise. The textile industry is a significant contributor to carbon emissions, reusing limits the need for new. Most of us enjoy changing our costume up year-on-year, but this doesn't mean you have to hit the shops.
Unsurprisingly, Halloween costumes are usually only worn once before they are binned; Batman suits and the office rarely mix. The result is tonnes of perfectly good materials going to landfill. In an attempt to tackle this single-use culture, some people have begun hosting Halloween swap events. Swap events can be held at home or school and are a great way of ensuring old and outgrown costumes are reused. Find helpful tips for your exchange event here.
At Re-Gen, we process MDR (Mixed Dry Recycling) at our state of the art facility, rerouting waste such as cardboard and paper from landfill sites. While we deal with literal tonnes of waste, you too could reuse the same materials during the Halloween break. Coffee jars, cereal boxes and old newspapers, you could transform your home into a spooky house of horrors.
Readers Digest has smart examples of how to create seasonal lanterns and cobwebs from jam jars and crumpled paper. As well as saving the planet, these tips are also great for encouraging children to get creative. For the cost of some stick-on googly eyes and inexpensive paints, your waste can decorate your walls and table tops.
It may be too late for last year's decorations and costumes but thinking green this year will benefit you in the long term. Store your decorations and anything you create, so that come Halloween 2019, you aren't relying on last minute shopping and repurchasing the same things. If your costumes are beyond salvaging, you should consider donating them at clothes banks, where could even get a small cash reward!
At Re-Gen, our long-term goal is to help communities and businesses alike achieve greater recycling targets. To stay abreast of how we achieve our goals and learn more about the work we do, follow us on Twitter or Like our Facebook page. Have a green and great Halloween!