7 Tips for a Greener Halloween

Halloween is almost here, and I am going to come right out and admit that I am way behind on my preparations. I’m sewing my kids’ costumes, and so far I have … wait for it … cut the fabric for one half of one kid’s outfit. I’m pretty sure I know what I’ll be doing on October 30.

Whether you’re organized (go you!), or you’re procrastinating like me, there are a few things that you can do to make your Halloween a little friendlier on the planet. And you don’t have to sacrifice any fun in the process. Because who wants to do that? Not me. And certainly not my children.

Our jack-o-lanterns are super-spooky!

Here are my tips for a green and spooky Halloween:

  1. When it comes to costumes, hit the thrift stores, or your own closet. You’ll avoid consuming any new materials, and you’ll save money, too.
  2. If you are buying something new for Halloween, try to make it something that will be usable later. For instance, I’m going to need a white shirt to flesh out my daughter’s Dorothy costume. I’ll check the second-hand stores first, but either way, once Halloween’s over, this can enter her regular wardrobe rotation.
  3. Use something you have on hand already to collect your treats. The staple of trick-or-treaters in my childhood was the trusty pillowcase. But beach pails, re-usable grocery bags and baskets work equally well, and won’t be yet another plastic bag that ends up in the landfill.
  4. Trick-or-treat in your own neighbourhood, so that you can go on foot. Not only are you avoiding the emissions that come with driving, but you’re getting to know your neighbours. Everybody wins!
  5. When you’re buying treats to hand out, opt for minimal packaging. The amount of plastic wrapped around some Halloween treats is pretty alarming. The less of that there is, the easier it is on the earth.
  6. Green your Halloween party by choosing re-usable dishes and cutlery, and environmentally-friendly games. Old favourites like bobbing for apples and pumpkin-carving are light on the earth, and lots of fun, to boot.
  7. Save your decorations for next year, so that you don’t need to buy new ones. And in the case of your jack-o-lantern, compost it, or better yet, eat it!

Halloween 2009
Last year my daughter was Little Red Riding Hood, and aside from the cape, everything else was something we already had on hand

Here are a few more resources to get your Green Halloween off and running:

What about you? What do you do to make your Halloween greener? Please share your own ideas in the comments!

You can catch up with Amber’s spooky adventures at Halloween and all year round at Strocel.com.

One Response to 7 Tips for a Greener Halloween
  1. Rebecca
    October 29, 2010 | 12:10 pm

    It’s amazing what you can find at thrift stores. I haven’t had luck in the clothes department, but years ago a college roommate of mine found everything to be Rainbow Brite for Halloween at the local thrift store (double bonus, we walked because the town was so small!).