Is it time to stop shopping?

An article in The Guardian caught our eye recently. It’s a look at Canadian author JB MacKinnon’s new book The Day the World Stops Shopping, which examines what society might look like if we all bought less stuff.

Of course, the benefits of buying less aren’t exactly rocket science. As MacKinnon points out in his Guardian interview, “When people buy less stuff, you get immediate drops in emissions, resource consumption and pollution, unlike anything we’ve achieved with green technology.”

And, he adds, we’ve all reassessed our priorities as a result of the pandemic - many of us coming to the realisation that the relationships we have with our friends and family are far more important than material things. As he puts it, post-pandemic, “I don’t think anybody is going to say that having a bunch of home-workout gear was as satisfying as being able to have contact with friends, family and neighbours.”

The alternative vision he presents is intriguing. He explores the idea of a society without economic growth at its heart: “Individuals are more self-sufficient, growing food, mending things and embracing wabi-sabi, the Japanese concept of imperfect aesthetics (think patched-up pockets or chipped ceramics).” In this new, low-consuming world, planned obsolescence is a thing of the past. Durability is celebrated, and tax incentives make repairing products more affordable than replacing them.

The thing that struck us about these possibilities is that these are all things we can start to implement in our lives now - we can be part of the change.

 

 

Kate & Louise

Co-founders, now, sit down