The Fairyland Trust has been progressively eliminating plastic from its events such as the Fairy Fair held in spring, and The Real Halloween, and its Workshops, since it started in 2001. Many other festivals and events are now trying to do the likewise (for example Shambala Festival).
“It’s not always easy” says Sarah Wise who co-ordinates Fairyland Trust events. “The event business has become as used to relying on plastic as have many other businesses, from retail to farming but it has to be done”.
“For instance we use canvas tents not plastic gazebos, use painted wood not printed plastic, avoid hiring stall-holders who generate waste such as plastic drinks cups, plastic containers, straws or bottles, and are now getting rid of plastic details like cable ties. This year we have also totally eliminated the ever-smaller amounts of plastic glitter featured in our making Workshops. We encourage visitors to do the same and use non-plastic face paint and cosmetics* instead, and we urge all other event managers to join us in eliminating plastic”. [*See Lush lustres below – non plastic]
How We Ended Plastic Glitter
Although it looks like shiny metal, plastic glitter is instant pollution.
Remind you of anyone?
All that glitters is not gold – we don’t think even Smaug would like gold plastic glitter.
(You can get coloured sand from educational suppliers or arts and crafts shops.)
Dressing Up Advice
Many people dress up for The Real Halloween and this year the Trust is offering non-plastic dressing-up advice and holding a no-new plastic Fancy Dress Competition. Sarah says: “we want people to enjoy themselves celebrating Halloween and our message is that you can look good without buying new plastic”.
The Trust has also done a survey of the huge amount of new plastic waste produced at Halloween as a result of people buying new shop-bought plastic costumes and clothing, much of which gets thrown away. It has asked retailers to stop selling new costumes made from plastic from 2019.
Chris Rose who conducted the survey says “Once upon a time Halloween was a very nature-based event. Robert Burns’ famous poem Halloween is full of references to natural things like the moon, nuts, apples, cabbages, haystacks, faeries and songs. Today’s commercialized Halloween is frighteningly full of plastic: we need to cut it out wherever possible. Plastic has no place at Halloween”.
For an alternative to plastic glitter (all cheap glitter is plastic) – see the lustres sold at Lush. They use artificial mica which is a mineral and not plastic. (‘Biodegradable’ glitters are not all biodegradable and some still contain plastic).
Above: how to find an alternative to plastic glitter – artificial mica lustres on Lush cosmetics by searching ‘Synthetic fluorphlogopite’ under ‘products’