Chinese New Year comes around every year from late January to mid-February on the Gregorian calendar, with its exact date determined according to the phases of the moon. This year, we’ll be welcoming the Lunar New Year of the Rat on the 25th January. To get ready for the start of the new year, many Chinese families conduct their annual cleaning ritual right before the celebrations. So with the Lunar New Year just around the corner, here are some reasons why you should do your own pre-CNY spring clean and some tips we have to make it as eco-friendly as possible.
What is spring cleaning?
The first day of the new year on the lunar calendar marks the end of winter and the start of the spring season – so the annual cleaning ritual that takes place before it is called “spring cleaning.” Traditionally, the ritual happens on the 28th day of the 12th month of the lunar calendar to clean the home of any “bad luck” in time for new good luck to enter the front door. Once families are done with spring cleaning, all the cleaning tools like brooms and vacuums are put away and not used within the 15-day festival season to make sure none of the good fortune gets swept away!
With the Year of the Rat just around the corner, it’s the perfect time and excuse you need to take some time out to clean your homes of all the dirt, grime and unnecessary clutter!
Decluttering the eco-way
First comes getting rid all the unnecessary items from your home! Of course at Green Queen, we’re huge fans of decluttering – but in the most sustainable way possible. Bearing in mind that our landfills are overflowing with waste, our oceans have never been more polluted with plastic, and our endless over-consumption is fuelling the global climate crisis, it is imperative that we conduct our clear-outs in a responsible manner.
Start with organisation. It’s best to start this process of organising the items you want to get rid of in three piles: one for recyclable materials like paper, metal cans and plastic, another for donation and giveaways to friends and family, and a final section for you to do some D-I-Y upcycling and creative repurposing.
Green Queen POP-UP Concept Store is here to help
So you’ve sorted everything out, given away some of your preloved homeware and clothing to family and friends, recycled all the scrap paper and plastic (remember receipts cannot be recycled!) and repurposed some of the empty jars into new candles and pencil holders…but you’re still left with a pile! Don’t fret – we are here to help with our first-ever Green Queen POP UP Concept Store, happening this week in Central in collaboration with Teapigs Hong Kong.
Over our 4-day POP UP, we have not only curated a selection of the city’s most eco luxe fashion and lifestyle brands, but we have teamed up with some incredible partner to put together a series of donation boxes so nothing ends up in a landfill!
- Thanks to Asia’s leading fashion waste charity Redress, we’ll be collecting preloved fashion items (clothes, bags and accessories), which will be sorted for resale, recycling and upcycling.
- We’ve partnered up with reBooked HK as well, the city’s non-profit social enterprise dedicated to rehousing used books, and will be collecting all your old books from your bookshelf spring clean-out!
- Even your pre-owned baby and kids clothes will find a new home with Retykle, Hong Kong’s first online consignment platform promoting a circular economy for childrenswear.
Plus, we’ve got some amazing free giveaways and workshops lined up too, so you definitely won’t want to miss out on our POP UP.
Spring clean your home the natural way
Once you’ve donated, upcycled and recycled all your clutter, it’s important to do some actual cleaning too! According to some Chinese traditions, being mindful about what you use to clean your home is a crucial part of a spring cleaning ritual – you want to avoid any harsh, synthetic ingredients as much as possible. Not only will this supposedly help to bring in positivity and fortune in the year ahead, it’s also the more eco-friendly way to go!
Conventional cleaning products often contain harmful toxins that end up polluting our soil, waterways and indoor air, and is packaged in single-use bottles. Using natural ingredients such as vinegar and baking soda will reduce the environmental impact of your spring cleanout, as you can find these home cleaning supplies in bulk packaging-free stores, and avoid the unhealthy toxins from entering your home too.
Lead image courtesy of 99.co / Dyson.