Sustainable Fashion 0

My Christmas Tree Realisation

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Being an Australian, the practice of pushing Christmas trees out of the window onto the streets is certainly a foreign concept. From Boxing day through to a few weeks after Christmas, Christmas trees line the Berlin streets. Being an extremely sentimental person makes this is an extremely sad vision. The trees are used for such a short period of time, before they are dumped. Perhaps this is a sign of our disassociation and lack of appreciation regarding the amount of energy it takes to conveniently deliver these trees to our neighbourhoods.
 
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Though I must admit. I am guilty! I am one of the people who contribute to this Christmas tree massacre.  I can’t resist the novelty of walking around the corner to buy a REAL Christmas tree. It is just like in the movies! In Australia our Christmas tree adventure involves dusting off the old plastic Christmas tree which has been stored in the attic for the past year. With family members regularly joining us from Australia for a German Christmas, we have bought a number of these beautiful real trees over the years. But this year I decided to look into the Christmas tree debate. Artificial vs. Natural vs. Alternative Approaches.
 
 
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After looking briefly into the Christmas tree debate it seems that purchasing a tree, plastic or real, is not very sustainable with both options being environmentally harmful. Some organisations claim that you would need to have a plastic tree for 10 years before it can be on a level playing field with the real Christmas trees. Plastic trees are generally made of PVC. This material is a polluter and  is non recyclable and the trees ultimately end up in landfill. With real trees, issues around management of land, soil degradation and people simply throwing them away rather then recycling them come into play. If you are going for a sustainable Christmas really neither option will suffice. My research did point me towards some more sustainable alternatives, including hiring trees, making a tree with alternative materials (e.g. branches, card) or growing a Christmas tree. So next year I will forfeit the buying of a Christmas tree and create my own alternative tree.  
 
This is a sustainable fashion site, so why am I addressing the issue of Christmas tree production?
Witnessing these trees on the curb, only reminds me of the current state of the fast fashion industry. This item is a single-use object. We use it for only a limited amount of time and easily dispose of it once it has fulfilled its one specific purpose. We think very little about the energy that it takes to produce such an item and have no regard for what happens to it after.
 
At ‘i give 2 hoots’ we do care! Much like my Christmas tree realization, it is important that we inform ourselves of what we are consuming. ‘i give 2 hoots’ will hopefully be a platform which inspires and informs on issues regarding sustainable fashion. We are looking forward to a busy sustainable 2016! 
 

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