As my next and final school semester begins next week, I wanted to spend the few free days I had making the most of summer before getting super busy again. Today, I grabbed lunch with a friend and went to the Whitney museum -- thought I would share some photos and general musings.
Canadian Chinese poet Rita Wong's book Forage & roast turkey sammie
At the beginning of the week, I was a panelist for a discussion focused on sustainability as a student for my university. One person asked a question about what first and easy steps an individual that is not yet committed to living green can take to lead a more sustainable lifestyle. I wanted to bring this up here too because it is always important to remember and acknowledge that everyone has different levels and abilities that they can contribute to being more eco-friendly.
beautiful skies -- deceiving though because it was unbearably hot and humid
A few tips for those starting to want to live greener lives:
Keeping yourself educated on different matters is important and can also spark an interest in your friends or people you meet to question their behaviors and actions as well.
You are not alone. If you are unsure just ask because someone you know is bound to have a solution or at least can help you brainstorm. I like to ask my eco-conscious friends too what new tactics they have for certain things because maybe I can pick up some more efficient ways to pack certain things or new stores to look at.
Also, social media can be your friend. Sharing events and news can be insightful and impactful for those around you that maybe do not pay attention to environmental news that often. You can also find many helpful resources online or through green bloggers and activists.
grey cropped top - Taiwan night market
grandma's vintage silk button-up
Get a reusable water bottle.
This is something super accessible and ultimately healthy for yourself too! Most cities have very clean and drinkable tap water, so there is no excuse to be still buying plastic water bottles. These also work great for any drinks you want to buy, smoothies included.
Say no to single-use disposables.
Single-use disposables are things like plastic straws, cutlery, coffee cups, to-go containers, paper towels etc. I know some of these can be difficult when first starting, but I would prioritize refusing plastic first. There are many many paper alternatives to most of the single-use plastic items. Bringing your own containers and utensils is a plus! Some of my favorites are mason jars and other jars that have measurements on them, making it easier to get drinks and food to-go.
this art looks like those Chinese checker cookies
favorite dark ideas tote - @elevatorteeth
All in all, there are many other things one can adopt to be more green, but I think these are a few key simple steps that will not uproot your lifestyle too much and can be a good introduction into living a greener life. Once you form habits with these starter steps, you will naturally start to think of other ways to be more eco-friendly and ways that it will fit seamlessly into your life.
rings left to right: gifted from my sister, skull signet ring - Gogo Philip, grand ring no 1 - Saskia Diez // pinstripe trousers - Forever 21 // olive sandals - Pons
I try to maintain all of my clothes until I really cannot wear them anymore. A great example are these trousers that I have been wearing for almost six or seven years. I remember when I first started learning about fast fashion and made a decision to start buying more consciously. I at first felt guilty for even owning pieces from Forever 21 or Zara, but I also knew it did not make any sense to just donate all my clothes because that would simply be feeding into the throwaway culture that stems from fast fashion. I try to and would encourage people to buy secondhand or if they have the means, to invest and support brands that are making a commitment to produce more sustainably, ethically, and eco-friendly, but I also understand that that is not always possible for everyone. I think the most crucial thing then to be aware of is to not fall into the traps of fast fashion's throwaway culture.
Instead of feeling shame for having these items, I wear them proudly and have made them last for many years. Two things that have really extended my clothings' life cycles are washing less or spot washing/hand washing when needed and mending them myself when there is wear and tear. We really do not need to wash our clothes as often as we do because it just breaks them down, especially if they are more cheaply made. And, there are many fixes to small rips and tears. I usually like to do some visible mending with cute colors because that also becomes a conversation starter and makes my clothing unique and fun. Or for bigger holes or tears, you can even sew patches onto your garments. I probably need to touch up these pants soon though, since the mending is messy and coming undone a little, haha.
earrings & some visible mending on my pants
Eckhaus Latta: Possessed at the Whitney
Anyways, I hope that this sparks some introspective thoughts for some and that everyone has a groovy weekend and rest of the summer!