Design Tips: No Fear No-Waste November

We’re all familiar with minimalism. It has saturated modern culture not only as a design trend, but a lifestyle as well. It’s not just stripping color from spaces and clean lines– it’s removing distractions and focusing on things which evoke simplistic joy.

Open. Bright. Clean.
Plenty of room to functionally exist and just  b r e a t h e.

If this trend hadn’t have become a thing, I’m unsure if I ever would have de-cluttered my early-stage life from my own home. This Thanksgiving– a holiday specifically celebrating plentiful abundance– I am thankful for minimalism.

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Gorgeous, right?

But let’s take this further for a moment.
If it feels so good to reduce on a micro, personal scale– what does it mean to go minimal on the macro? Can this de-stress tool be applied on a global scale?

This November, we a DS2 Living would like to take a moment  to approach the subject of zero waste– a movement which has sprung from minimalism into an idealization all its own. Zero-waste is a lifestyle of global mindfulness, an attempt to minimize humanity’s earthly footprint by cutting waste, living eco-clean and focusing on sustainable practices.

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Of course, this is no easy feat– and to be honest, not something I initially saw feasible.

To go zero-waste often means putting global wellness before personal comfort. That means no food wrappers, spontaneous shopping trips or designed-for-disposal products. This can mean composting food scraps, bulk-bin shopping, and up-cycling items once destined for the landfill. As a result, highly efficient zero-wasters often boast a mere handful of trash per year. This reduces their personal footprint, and which dominoes into global sustainability.

This lifestyle is reported to have amazing lasting effects on personal wellness; though we understand that it isn’t for everyone.

That in mind, there are endless small-scale lifestyle adjustments which can lower your home’s global impact. Here are a few simple choices which make “No-Waste November” a feasible achievement, with no stylistic sacrifice!

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Go Glass

Instead of using ziplock bags or plastic wrap to keep food fresh, opt for glass containers which can be washed and re-used. Also great for the keeping of bulk-bin products, this storage solution declutters busy labels from spaces and organizes pantries and lunchboxes alike.
Not only is this more aesthetically appealing than a stash of ziplocks, it’s more affordable in the long run.

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Paper Nor Plastic

Bringing your own bags when grocery shopping is no new eco-trick, but the ever-growing trend has created a massive arsenal of canvas options which suits every personality and profession.
This concept doesn’t have to end at grocery check-out! Alternative bag solutions are endlessly useful, making them a staple of any low-waste home.

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Conquer the Compost

Composting doesn’t have to be as un-glamorous as it sounds. There are plenty of design-friendly composters on the market which blend seamlessly onto any kitchen counter-top. No yard required! This also makes them feasible options for city lofts and apartments.

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Be Practical with Paperless

Sustainable options are often “old world” by design. Zero waste is sturdy and reusable– an alternative solution to the disposable consumer culture of late. But this is the digital age, which comes with massive waste-saving solutions!

I love my written lists as much as the next type-A designer, but I’ve recently discovered To-Doist (an online agenda and scheduling app) and I’m already hooked.

Opt to pay bills online. Email instead of snail mail. Request direct deposit. No mess. No waste. No bulky binders or piles of paperwork. With so many options for your phone, tablet or laptop– there’s honestly no excuse.

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For more information on the zero-waste movement; check out the informational homepage Going Zero Waste.

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