How to choose an eco-friendly Christmas jumper

The Christmas jumper has become a big part of the festive season for most of us – but buying a new one every year is terrible for the planet.

So here are some tips on how to buy an eco-friendly Christmas jumper:

First of all, if you have to buy a new jumper this year, here are the top things to avoid if you can:

  • Don’t buy cheap ‘fast fashion’ Christmas jumpers that either aren’t washable or won’t wash well – you’ll end up wearing them once and then throw them away
  • Say no to jumpers containing polluting plastic microfibres and glitter and opt for a natural material like wool instead – or choose a Christmas jumper made from recycled cotton or polyester.

With fast fashion having devastating effects on people and the environment, we should all minimise our impact as much as possible.

Buy from a small business

If you’re wondering where to buy a sustainable Christmas jumper, I recommend having a browse for handmade items on the Etsy website.

Not only will you be making a more environmentally-friendly choice, you’ll be supporting artisan creators and small businesses.

I particularly like Banana Peel’s cashmere reindeer jumper in cream, and – for children – this super cute Christmas pudding jumper from Ana Gibb Handmade.

It will cost you more, but your Christmas jumper will be one you want to treasure for years to come – so try to think about the cost per wear.

To ensure your new Christmas jumper lasts – check the washing instructions carefully and store it safely so it’s in good condition and ready for action again next year!

In my experience there are some bigger brands on Etsy as well as smaller makers, so it’s worth checking that you’re buying something truly sustainable.

Make your own Christmas jumper

If you’re on a tight budget and/or want to avoid buying new, there are lots of fun and creative options for creating your own Christmas jumper for very little cash – and you won’t bump into anyone wearing the same one as you!

There are lots of Christmas jumper patterns, YouTube knitting tutorials and craft kits available, so even if you’re not an experienced knitter or crafter, it’s easy enough to have a go.

You can knit or sew your own jumper, or the easier option is to use an old or second hand non-Christmassy jumper.

Simply add your own festive sparkle by sticking, pinning or sewing on old Christmas decorations, ribbons and scraps of fabric.

If you don’t have a suitable jumper already lurking in the back of your wardrobe, your local charity shops will have something preloved you can use – which means you’ll be saving the planet and donating to a good cause at the same time.

You might even find a ready-made second hand Christmas jumper, saving yourself the trouble of decorating your own!

No time to rummage in charity shops? Search on eBay for that perfect second hand, vintage item you can give a new lease of life this Christmas.

Swap old Christmas jumpers with friends

If making your own isn’t your thing, how about swapping pre-loved Christmas jumpers?

Get family and friends together, or set up a WhatsApp group and share pictures of your old Christmas jumpers.

You could swap for free, or pay a small amount for each new jumper you acquire, raising money for charity at the same time – perhaps for Save The Children’s Christmas Jumper Day fundraising appeal!

You’ll have a ‘new’ jumper (or two) to wear this Christmas – and your old jumper will have a great new home – all without having an additional negative impact on the environment.

If you’d like some more sustainable Christmas ideas, then do check out my blog posts on embracing a more eco-friendly Christmas, and Christmas crackers that are better for the environment.

I hope you find these tips useful – let me know what you think!

Alex x

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