Zero waste is having a moment, with many of us no longer able to shy away from our personal impact on the environment, we are thoughtfully considering how, where, why and what we consume. Alongside our ever-growing eco consciousness there has been a gradual boost in ‘zero waste’ shops throughout the UK. Lucky for me, I have Fiona’s Wholefoods & Refills in my local town which has just recently relocated to larger premises and been beautifully renovated.
WHAT IS A ZERO WASTE SHOP
The principle is simple – bring your own reusable containers and fill them up with the offerings displayed in bulk, eliminating unnecessary plastics. These shops often feature local, vegan and Fairtrade products providing an alternative to supermarkets chains.
Zero Waste Shop Criteria:
- No Plastic
- Zero Waste
- Bulk Shopping
- Keep it Local
- Fairtrade origins
FIONA’S WHOLEFOODS & REFILLS
Fiona first opened her shop at the end of last year with her bulk shopping supply of spices and herbs, dried food, sweet treats as well as eco-friendly cleaning products and vegan toiletries. Earlier this year she received funding from the Cairngorms Trust and Berryburn Community to relocate and expand her store.
Fiona’s brand colours showcase muted greens and coral hues of pink & orange and from the onset she wanted to use these tones within her shop interior. Colour psychology states that orange and pink elicit feelings of joy, optimism and comfort whilst also leaving us feeling energised and rejuvenated. Best of all these warm coral colours increase our appetite.
Green is a soothing tone associated with the outdoors and nature. It ties perfectly with the concept of zero waste as it feels organic whilst also promoting positivity, inner balance and reflection.
Using the brand logo as a feature within the interior design ensures there is a strong use of colour and subsequently a visceral response with the combination of these hues feeling harmonious and appealing.
Eco design often features raw materials, seen in Fiona’s Wholefoods & Refills with the wood panelling till point and display stands. The whole experience wants to feel as ‘minimal plastic’ as possible as the environmental impact of the interior is considered, with salvaged materials, recycled items and untouched natural wood.
The concept of zero waste is all about encouraging customers to minimise packaging whilst making sustainable shopping (particularly food shopping) seem easy. One of the vital design elements of any zero-waste interior is the wall containers/ gravity dispensers, a straightforward ‘serve yourself’ method. The shopping experience is interactive and lends itself to a feeling of ‘community’ with open shelving, natural light and a relaxed floorplan.
As we all take a little more time to consciously select our consumer habits, the zero-waste shop and unconventional movement seems to be the next stage in limiting our rubbish, tackling the recycling problem as well as supporting smaller businesses and giving life back into our local high streets. There is a sense of nostalgia and times gone by, as well as enthusiastically embracing transforming how we shop. A personal touch with a sense of purpose, welcoming social change with the concept and interior of a zero-waste shop demonstrating how design can be a positive impact on the environment.