Sustainable Resolutions: Shopping Sustainably in 2021

It's a new year, and that means many of us are making resolutions. I used to think that resolutions were a waste of time, because like most people, I never managed to keep mine. In fact, by the end of January, I had often forgotten what my resolution was. But in past years, I've gotten excited about setting goals and taking time to reflect as the turn of the year approaches. Resolutions, when done right, can help you start fresh and make life changing habits that improve the world around you.

So, in 2021, the team at Lucia's is looking to find ways that we can improve on our sustainability both here at the shop and in our personal lives. We invite you to join us throughout the year in making small habits that make big change for Mother Nature. First up, I'm sharing some of our best tips for shopping sustainably, because the store is the first line of defense against unsustainable habits. When you only have sustainable products, it's a lot easier to make sustainable choices. 

Our Top Five Tips

1. Upcycle

This tip is all about reusing. Upcycling is the practice of finding new uses for items that have served their purpose. Do you have a dress that just doesn't fit anymore? Turn the fabric into napkins! Did you break a glass? Add a couple of old jars and wine bottles and make mosaic coasters! Not into crafts? No problem! Many of the products here at Lucia's are upcycled from worn garments, scrap materials, and even old oil drums! By supporting businesses that find creative ways to reimagine used items, you are contributing to a global circular economy and a world with less waste. 

2. Go Organic and Natural

Reduce your carbon footprint by wearing natural fibers and dyes. Did you know that fabrics like polyester and nylon are actually made from plastics? And what's worse, these plastics shed into tiny fragments that fall into your food, the water supply, and the sea. This means that even if you are buying recycled materials polyester clothing, it still is losing non-degradable plastic to the earth every time you wear that item. So in 2021, we're challenging ourselves, and you, to purchase more clothing and accessories made from natural fibers like cotton and wool. Compared to synthetic fibers, they're cozier and more durable anyway! You can get started by shopping our Clothing Collection!

3. Buy Indigenous

Supporting cultural heritage is sustainable by nature. When you purchase products that are made using traditional methods, they are by definition made by a skilled worker with care. These methods also typically rely on local natural resources like natural dyes or renewable woods. They take time to make, and therefore cannot easily be mass produced in factory conditions. One great example is Lucia's huipile products. The ancient weaving tradition of huipile is taught by mother to daughter and practiced on a specific kind of loom called a backstrap weaving loom. While large companies could appropriate the style of huipil, true huipil cannot be mass manufactured. This makes it so that you know every huipil piece that you purchase was made with care, possibly over the course of many months. As support grows for a tradition like huipile, artisans are able to purchase higher quality and more authentic materials like locally dyed thread, making supporting cultural heritage even more sustainable over time. 

4. Support Small

If we learned anything in 2020, it was the importance of shopping small for keeping the local economy alive. However, supporting small business has many other benefits for sustainability as well. Small businesses are run by people like you. Therefore, they are much more likely to share your values. By simply shopping small, you can cut back on many of the problems associated with large corporations. Small businesses are less likely to over-purchase, thereby reducing the problem of overproduction. They are also much more likely to resell returned merchandise than large companies which are known for incinerating or throwing away millions of tons of unsold merchandise each year. Small businesses are also much more likely to carry locally made goods, donate to local organizations, and participate in local community events where they can hear feedback from their customers and tune their business models to the needs of the area. Here at Lucia's, we're always excited to hear feedback from our customers on how we can make your shopping experience better. Let us know in the comments if there are any sustainability programs that you would like to see. 

5. Go Plastic Free

If you are looking for a real sustainability challenge, this one is for you. Each month this year, we challenge you to cut one kind of single use plastic from your life. Start off small with something like plastic straws, shopping bags, or dryer sheets. As the year goes on, see if you can cut single use plastic from your grocery shopping list or from your hygiene routine. For this month, shop our reusable shopping bags and market baskets and our dryer balls!

sustainable shopping tips

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