I’m not ready to go all “Julie-Andrews” on you and start singing about raindrops on roses, whiskers on kittens or the like (truthfully, I’m not really a cat person). But I am happy to extoll on a few of my favorite things (in no particular order): entertaining and saving the planet!
The great news is that these two things don’t have to be mutually exclusive. There are a myriad of ways to go green and be the hostess with the most-ess. But often the biggest impact will come from thinking small: that is, reducing the amount of waste from your fête.
I’ve picked just a few key areas to green-appease with relative ease:
Evite’s are an obvious option for reducing waste when it comes to letting guests in on the who, what, where, why and when, but they often lack a personal touch (and don’t always match the color scheme you had in mind). Make the invitations speak your own language by creating a jpeg document — either scanning an original paper copy or building something in soft-copy format.
Cloth napkins – So easy, yet often so overlooked! Since you’re going to be doing laundry anyway, it’s just as easy to throw the linens in the wash as throwing them out. Red bandanas are a great choice for a linen that doesn’t break the bank as they can be used for multiple holidays (fabulous for summer entertaining – specifically Fourth of July, even Valentines.)
Dinnerware – If what Marshall McLuhaun said about the medium being the message is true, then I cringe to think of what plastic tableware is saying. Whenever possible, opt for stoneware and then wash in an Energy Star appliance (insert your favorite cheeky emoticon here). For larger groups (you know, those of us whose “matching sets” top out at 12, if we’re lucky!) check our Preserve’s: On the Go party pack. Sold in packs of 40 table settings, they’re lightweight, festive made of 100% recycled #5 plastic, (100% recyclable!), BPA and melamine free… plus, they can go in your dishwasher too.
I’ve said before that saving the planet is fun – and it is. So it goes without saying (but I will anyway), that someone interested in the merits of protecting Mother Earth is likely to be an excellent entertainer! (OK, the logic’s a little squishy, but go humor me.) Green-partying really can just be an extension of the things you’re already doing: like buying in bulk to reduce packaging, recycling (plastic, aluminum, glass, etc), buying local, baking and making from scratch, taking advantage of composting scraps from meal prep and when possible table scraps. For clean up, look for non-toxic and natural products and utilize tools in the kitchen that make an impact overall.
I say by thinking small (keeping waste to a minimum), you’ll make a BIG impact.
So what are your tricks for reducing waste to be a green, party machine?
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