Support our community and environment by shopping locally AND sustainably this holiday season! Holiday shopping rushes result in 25% more waste generated between Thanksgiving and New Year’s. And that doesn’t even take into account the environmental impacts from producing, packaging, and transporting all your holiday purchases. Looking to reduce your environmental footprint this year while also supporting local businesses? Try gifts that support reuse and repair!

Image: Unique Boutique-Viviane’s Vintage & Vogue at 10925 W River St

#1: Buy second-hand

During the pandemic’s first stay-at-home order, many people spent their extra time de-cluttering their homes, inundating Goodwill and other nonprofits with donated materials. Unfortunately, only 10-20% of these items are sold in store, and the rest are downcycled into rags and insulation or sent to the landfill. Thrifting is a win-win: you can find treasures at second-hand stores while supporting local non-profits and small businesses and extending the life of quality goods. For more information on thrifting around Truckee-Tahoe, check out Conserving through Consignment: Where to Thrift and Why You Should.

Image: Truckee Roundhouse’s sock monkey make-at-home kit

#2: Make your own

Cut out the impacts from production, transportation, and packaging of store-bought products by making your own! You can reduce your footprint AND support a local non-profit by purchasing one of Truckee Roundhouse’s make-at-home kits. Truckee Roundhouse is a community makerspace dedicated to fostering creativity and bringing together local makers and artists. Adapting to COVID-19 precautions, they now offer at-home kits to continue the joy of making. Their sock monkey make-at-home kit includes socks, needles, thread, stuffing, button eyes, and assembly instructions. These at-home kits can be shipped out of the area or delivered locally, and make a great winter craft project for a loved one. Purchase a DIY sock monkey kit from the Truckee Roundhouse to make or gift!

#3: Give your gear a second life

If it’s broke, fix it! Treat your loved ones by repairing their favorite puffy jacket or piece of gear. There’s nothing better than holding onto your beloved belongings a little bit longer. Technical Equipment Cleaners in Truckee can help! They offer cleaning, repairs, waterproofing, and patching on ski gear, sporting goods, and household items — just in time to get your gear dialed for the winter. TEC sells gift cards and also accepts and returns your items in the mail. Give your gear a second life and support a local, family owned Truckee business.

Keep Truckee Green is also giving away Patagonia patch repair kits for easy fixes to holes in a puffy jacket or leaking feathers. Simply apply the patch to your jacket or other gear! These small patches make great gifts or stocking stuffers. To receive one, enter Keep Truckee Green’s FREE Instagram giveaway.

No matter what you’re buying this year, consider sustaining the health of our vibrant community by supporting Truckee small businesses. If you’re headed to shop in-store, be sure to shop local. And when you’re ready to wrap up your gifts, don’t forget to keep it sustainable with reusable or recycled gift wrap. Get some tips for gift wrap alternatives at How to Go Zero Waste this Holiday Season.