In the spirit of The Gentle Art of Swedish Death Cleaning and The Joy of Less, experience the benefits of buying less and sharing more with this accessible 7-step guide to decluttering, saving money, and creating community from the creators of the Buy Nothing Project.
In 2013, when friends Liesl Clark and Rebecca Rockefeller launched the first Facebook Buy Nothing Project group in their small town off the coast of Seattle, they never expected it to become a viral sensation. Today there are thousands of Buy Nothing groups all over the world, boasting more than a million members, and 5,000 highly active volunteers.
In their island community, Clark and Rockefeller discovered that the beaches of Puget Sound were spoiled by a daily influx of plastic items and trash washing on shore. From pens and toothbrushes to toys and straws, they wondered, where did it all come from? Of course, it comes from us—our homes, our backyards, our cars, and workplaces. And so, a rallying cry against excess stuff was born.
Inspired by the ancient practice of gift economies, where neighbors share and pool resources, The Buy Nothing, Get Everything Plan introduces an environmentally conscious 7-step guide that teaches us how to buy less, give more, and live generously. At once an actionable plan and a thought-provoking exploration of our addiction to stuff, this powerful program will help you declutter your home without filling landfills, shop more thoughtfully and discerningly, and let go of the need to buy new things. Filled with helpful lists and practical suggestions including 50 items you never need to buy (Ziploc bags and paper towels) and 50 things to make instead (gift cards and salad dressing), The Buy Nothing, Get Everything Plan encourages you to rethink why you shop and embrace a space-saving, money-saving, and earth-saving mindset of buying less and sharing more.
Liesl Clark is an award-winning filmmaker and cofounder of the Buy Nothing Project. She has traveled the globe writing, directing, and filming many of the world’s most remote places. For the past two decades, Liesl has filmed for National Geographic and NOVA, covering science stories in extreme locations. By using her storytelling and photography, Liesl’s cofounding of the Buy Nothing Project has initiated a social movement necessary to bring about change and a positive impact on our homes and the environment.
Rebecca Rockefeller launched the Buy Nothing Project with its first local Facebook group on Bainbridge Island. Since then, she has been the force behind the movement’s unique online culture. Rebecca has translated her social media skills into a consultancy, helping artists and nonprofits promote themselves and their social movements online.
“Their approach is not about bartering, but about giving and receiving…My favorite [example]? A quarantinee, stuck at home, gifted her monthly MetroCard to a health care worker. The original owner of the card didn’t need it. A nurse on the front line of the crisis benefited. And our community was enriched. Simple.”—Judith Newman, The New York Times Book Review