Diwali celebrations this year is bound to be different. The year lets us reflect on celebrating an occasion symbolising the triumph of good over evil and new beginnings with conscious decisions. So, ditch the loud crackers and calculations of planning a Diwali party, and pick up these easy ways to dial down the carbon footprint of your Diwali celebrations, and take its charm a few notches up. By Shubhanjana Das

Diyas Made By Local Artisans Instead Of Candles Or Electric Lights

Somewhere along the line, humble clay diyas got overshadowed by glitzy fairy lights and fancy candles. But we tend to forget that a lot of livelihoods depend on this inexpensive diyas. Not only are these diyas biodegradable, but they are also reusable. And of course, it saves electricity! As for some other options, you can use the wheat dough, orange peels and coconut shells for DIY diyas.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Kumar Abhishek | Journalist | (@active_abhi) on

Use Upcycled Decor

Decorations are one of the first things that come to mind before Diwali. Since most of us are home this year, and most shops will be closed, squeeze some time out from your WFH schedule to make some cool Pinterest-y upcycled decor. However, if you’re not too keen on DIY-ing, invest responsibly by buying local and plastic-free elements.

Green Gifts

Let’s admit, gifts are one of the most exciting parts of Diwali, other than the sweets and snacks, of course. Now that you already have eco-friendly diyas and upcycled decor, you might as well stick to the theme for gifts. There are many options when it comes to picking plastic-free gifts. Plant saplings, handmade soaps, jute bags, handmade accessories, upcycled clothes and solar-powered gadgets, to name a few. The options are endless! Remember to pack them in paper instead of shiny wrapping plastic.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Kolam_Tamil (@kolam_tamil) on

Eco-Friendly Rangoli Kolam Or Alpana Style Instead Of Using Harmful Colours

Before chemical colours took over the market, fresh flowers, rice, dals, and pulses were used to make rangolis. These elements would later be the feed for birds, small insects, ants, etc. In South India and West Bengalkolam and alpona are drawn by hand, which are by their nature way more eco-friendly than artificial colours. This year, take a trip back in time and bring your family together to draw the rangoli. Here are a few alternatives.

  • Yellow – Pulses or turmeric
  • Brown – Cloves
  • Green – Cardamom and fennel seeds
  • Red – Dried chillies or kumkum
  • White – Rice grains or rice flour paste for kolam

Home-Made Sweets

This Diwali is all about going the extra mile to make everything even more memorable. This year, let your home be infused with the smell of ghee and sweets and bhujiya as you take out your chef’s hat and huddle around the boondi to roll out laddoos by hand.

Related: 29 Desserts From 29 States In India To Make Your Diwali Utterly ‘Sweet’ This…