Let's Talk Trash: Eco-friendly art

We love to be surrounded by beauty, and on the west coast of BC it is in abundant supply everywhere we look in the form of mountain vistas, lush forests and burnt orange sunsets.

When we enter our homes, it’s natural to want to adorn our walls and shelves with treasures that are meaningful and a delight to look at as well. Fortunately, we can choose art that lights us up while also considering the planet.

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How about bringing the outside in by collecting fallen leaves, unique stones, cedar bows, shells, feathers and driftwood? It can be such a delight to decorate window ledges and table centres with these echoes from the outdoors, and then return them to the earth or beach once they’ve been enjoyed for a time. Beachcombing can be great even on cooler days, and forest paths offer shelter for treasure hunters in more blustery weather. Little ones are usually game to be a part of these kinds of activities and have a keen eye for gems adults sometimes gloss over.

Scouring the shelves of thrift stores and antique shops for pre-loved pieces is also satisfying. We tend to find one-of-a-kind, low-cost beauties that are made to last. Often, older notions are made with better quality materials such as wood, metal, glass or ceramics, rather than plastic, too.

Keep your eye out for small secondhand and vintage shops when you are on your next road trips. Supporting locally run stores encourages a low impact part of the economy to stay alive by keeping goods in circulation within communities.

Art galleries are well worth a peek inside wherever you are. Bringing together incredible skill in many mediums, it is inspiring to see what people can create. You may find tokens or even bigger pieces that will become a special part of your home for years to come.

Speaking of art, we have just launched into craft fair season. There is a bounty of events coming your way, full of locally made, often sustainably crafted pieces.

Low impact deco can come in the form of plants, too. How about creating an indoor sanctuary of green to experience as the world outside turns a little more stark? Make it an edible herb garden for your kitchen, if you are a fan of fresh greens for your household.

What about renting art for your walls? Realtors hire decorators to stage empty houses, so why not consider this option for yourself? Committing to a work of art forever may not feel quite as good as enjoying a piece for a time and then returning it.

Many art rental companies also allow up to 50 per cent of the rental fee to go toward purchasing the art if you fall in love with it.

Art is an important part of being human: inspiring us, calming us, and reminding us of who we are, were and can become. Surrounding ourselves with pieces that do all this while having a light footprint is a great way to indulge.

Let’s Talk Trash is qathet Regional District’s waste-reduction education program.

Copyright © Powell River Peak

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