So, this year our family, decided to celebrate the biggest and brightest of all the Hindu festivals in an eco-friendly and DIY sort of style. Read this useful piece of information and learn how to celebrate eco-friendly diwali.
Turning Trash into Treasure: Come Diwali and the house gets a thorough cleaning. Long-lost items appear magically from closets and cabinets. Hence, we decided to reuse, recycle and up cycle many of these items for our Diwali décor.
Bandanwaars: We usually like shopping for Torans/ Bandanwaars during Diwali, these are traditional door hangings/buntings, displayed at the house entrance as a welcome gesture and to attract Lakshmi ji, the goddess of wealth and prosperity.
To set the festive mood this year, we created our own Toran using handmade paper, beads, discarded chocolate boxes, ribbons & tassels and old unused pieces of artificial jewelry.
Bottled Creativity: We also added some glitter on old wine bottles and filled them with last years LED lights, bamboo stems and fresh flowers to make interesting centerpieces.
Rangoli: In earlier times, rangolis were made to feed the birds using spices and rice powder, but nowadays the market is chock-a-block with artificial colors. So, we decided to make rangoli out of fresh flowers. We decorated the doorway with yellow and orange marigolds.
We also used a glass bowl filled with water for floating candles and flowers as a rangoli. It was quick to cleanup the next day with minimal wastage.
Tupperware to Traditional ware: Instead of plastics, we used traditional bronze, glass & ceramic bowls & plates to serve sweets, dry fruits and sherbet. Using vintage utensils lends the much needed ethnic feel to the celebrations apart from being healthy!
Lamps & Light: Diwali literally means 'a row of lamps', so we cleaned last years earthen lamps (diyas) and cloth lamps to be reused this year.
We used little chai-glasses, mixed with turmeric and kum-kum to get bright hues of yellow and reds and lit them up with tea light candles.
Folksy & Organic: We ditched synthetic room fresheners, electric lights, plastic streamers, idols made out of PoP and replaced them with organic incense sticks, camphor filled bowls of water, fresh flowers, earthen lamps, cloth lamps and candles to create an ambience for Diwali puja.
We used Geru, the earthy-red color used to paint flowerpots, to paint a homely image of Lakshmi ji on the wall. We used dough to stick the Lakshmi-Ganesh coin onto the betel leaf.
Say 'No' to Firecrackers: The easiest for us was to strike the firecrackers off our shopping list, we are not big on festive noisiness, we like playing music instead. For some people being green is hard, but saying 'No' to firecrackers is the smartest thing to do. Celebrate, don't intimidate…!
In every legend, myth and story surrounding Diwali, all we have heard is the victory of good over evil. Illuminating our homes and hearts towards reason and hope. This Diwali lets move from darkness unto light - the light that empowers us to commit ourselves to good deeds, that which brings us closer to being eco-friendly.
How did you decorate your house to celebrate Diwali this year… Share your green ideas in comments below…!