A brief guest post from writer and interiors stylist Joanna Thornhill
Online shopping has made life easier in many ways, but convenience has come at the cost of patience. It has brought with it a rise of ‘instant gratification’ culture (and choice paralysis), as we are presented with a bewildering number of options and become further removed than ever from the producers of our purchases. Technology itself isn’t at fault, of course, and it can be harnessed in ways that will help to redress this balance.
Keeping lists of things on your phone of all the things that you would ultimately like to procure for your home (along with the measurements of the space you have) ensures that any purchases you make are not impulsive or wasteful. You can also create saved searches on sites such as eBay, or stalk your local Facebook ‘swap or sell’ group and wait for a match. Technology also allows us to find individual designers, makers and ethical retailers and connect with them on a personal level on their social media platforms to discover directly how they produce or source their wares [Aerende ed’s note: we love it when our customers do this].
When it comes to consuming more responsibly, there is often a trade-off to consider. For example, if a cushion is handmade ethically, with an unbleached organic cotton case with an organic wool insert, but shipped from the other side of the world to your home, do the benefits still add up? Think about the circular economy as much as you can and look for items that can be re-used, repaired or recycled when you no longer require them, made with raw materials that can eventually re-enter the manufacturing process, minimising waste. Looking at the ‘value’ of something, in terms or the care skill and effort put into its production, and what purchasing it could bring to your life, should be as valid as its monetary cost – and if that means buying less, then so be it.
This blog post is an extract from The New Mindful Home by Joanna Thornhill (£14.99, Laurence King)