Your Green Holiday Challenge? Shop Sustainable in Your Hood


This holiday season, avoid succumbing to advertisers brainwashing us to believe that Best Buy and Macy’s are the only acts in town because of rock bottom sales and coupons. Instead, think local. Sure, we’re a global people, but neighborhood businesses need our support to survive.

The backbone of our small towns and cities is local business, and without them, we have main street vacancies, dark buildings, for lease signs, and people moving elsewhere. It all adds up to a good reason to  shop locally this year.


Kelly Drennan, Founder of ShopSustainable and Fashion Takes Action

Kelly Drennan of Toronto’s Fashion Takes Action knows the win-win of shopping locally, and has taken it a step further by  initiating her own program this holiday season called ShopSustainable.

Drennan’s city-wide initiative challenging consumers to shop locally as well as ethically this holiday season has a clear goal: Raising a general awareness of eco-friendly products while promoting Toronto-based products and online retailers who carry them. The program is a collaboration of Fashion Takes Action and Evolution Green.

Drennan says for these industries, it’s vital to transmit the message about where the sustainable businesses are,  and to get local people to shop them.

“Most people are now doing what they can to lighten their footprint, whether it means driving less, turning down the thermostat, or carrying reusable shopping bags,” says Drennan. “However, if consumers purchase just one gift or stocking stuffer this holiday season that is sustainable, then collectively it can have a very significant impact. Shop Sustainable challenges consumers to put their wallet where their heart is, for the planet.”

The notion of mindful consumerism has everyone wondering whether saving money this holiday season outweighs quality, ethics and investing in a more authentic buying experience. Will consumers see that pumping money into local businesses recirculates the wealth in their communities?

Check out this MSN article featuring tips on how to shop locally and see if you’re up for the challenge. And of course, if you’re in Toronto, ShopSustainable!

Amy DuFault

Amy DuFault is a conscious lifestyle writer, consultant and fashion instigator. She resides in Cape Cod, Massachusetts.