We’re pretty big hippies here at Misericordia Mansions and so I face a little conundrum, how do I make art (which is more or less a luxury) as kind to the Earth as possible?

I know that it can be a little overwhelming navigating the various ethical merits of organic, fairtrade, local and recycled, so I sat down and tried to make a list of what was most important to me, in order of preference. (This comes in handy when I’m stuck in front of the coconut milk section of a shop prevaricating wildly between four brands!)

This applies to my everyday shopping just as much as Misericordia supplies.

  • Second hand – charity shops, eBay, beg, borrow or lift from a skip
  • Independent – small businesses or makers
  • Local – shops in my local area, the UK, Europe etc
  • Fairtrade – if it has to come from overseas, it needs to be fair
  • Recycled
  • Organic

That’s why my frames are upcycled from charity shops (with Auro plant-based paints), my hoops and mini canvases are from the fabulous Fred Aldous in Manchester and my jewellery findings are from a new discovery, Jasmine Studios in London. When I feel I can be trusted, I take myself along the road to Edinburgh Art Shop with a very strict list.

frames and paint

I’m even hoping to change my fabric to organic muslin someday.

Do you look for any particular ethical qualities in your art (or shopping basket)? Any top tips for greener living, we’re always keen to try new things!