Christmas Lights Carnaby Street, eco-friendly, environmental, Project Zero, holiday illuminations, recycling, sustainable, sustainable Christmas, conservation, renewables, recyclable, reusable materials, creative renewables

By Ferne Arfin 8 December 2019

Carnaby Street’s sustainable Christmas displays are London’s best in 2019

London’s Christmas lights and displays are always dazzling. In 2019, it’s Carnaby Street and not the megastores that wins the prize for spectacular, responsible creativity.

A few days a ago, I bundled up warmly and joined a friend for my annual expedition to see London’s Christmas lights and holiday displays. In 2019, once again, the Spirit of Christmas and his court of angels flies over Regent Street and Piccadilly. The windows at Liberty sparkle with colorful creations.

But if all those twinkling lights  worry you a little, in our current climate emergency, head over to Carnaby Street to discover how delightful and exciting sustainable holiday decorations can be.

Don’t worry, this isn’t going to be a killjoy post. Before I was aware of the terrific story behind this shopping district’s festive lights, I had already joined hundreds of others looking up and smiling, blown away by the theatrical undersea setting above our heads.

Dolphins and seahorses and whales oh my

Dolphins frolic under clouds of blue seaweed. A five-meter-long whale spouts bubbles. Seahorses bob and dart around branches of red coral while a squadron of multi-colored jelly fish float in formation above Fouberts Place. A tightly-packed school of fish forms a silvery ball at an intersection. And at each end of a Carnaby Street filled with bubbles and pearls, an oyster presides over the scene trailing a banner that proclaims One Planet, One Ocean.

And every bit of this shimmering creation is sustainably made of recycled, reused and repurposed materials – many of the same materials that, when discarded, endanger our oceans.

Protecting the world’s oceans

The Carnaby Street merchants have partnered with Project Zero, an organization of scientists, business leaders, campaigners and others, working to raise global awareness of the fight to save the ocean. To create the extravagant Carnaby Street display, they used:

  • repurposed fishing netting for green kelp
  • more than 500 meters of post-use bubble wrap for the coral and starfish
  • at least 1,500 recycled plastic bottles for the fish and bubbles
  • 100 per cent cotton fabrics
  • more than 100 liters of water-based, vegan paint
  • sustainably sourced natural latex
  • 100 per cent renewably sourced bioenergy to power the lights.
  • when the decorations are taken down, they will be recycled and repurposed by Project Zero again.

Find out about all the materials used here.

The results are terrific. See for yourself:

please click gallery images for best views

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Carnaby Street Christmas lights. Save our planet, save the oceans, holiday lights, sustainable, recycled, environmental themes,

4 replies
  1. Anna
    Anna says:

    This is amazing! I love the fact that they even used vegan paint (many people don’t know that not all paint is vegan!) I will be in London in a few weeks and will have to check this out!

  2. Kathryn Burrington
    Kathryn Burrington says:

    What a wonderful initiative! Hoping to catch the display tomorrow, although, having recently been stung by jellyfish (luckily not by the box jellyfish we saw though) I have to admit they aren’t my favourite sea creatures at the moment!!


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