When heading out for a day exploring the shops and restaurants of the East End, there’s always a potential to create unnecessary waste—plastic utensils, papers napkins, face masks and other litter spilling out of the trash cans dotted along local Main Streets. We can do better. There are plenty of fabulous, reusable things we can buy to cut down on the amount of trash we create, thus keeping Hamptons and North Fork streets pristine and our local ecosystem clean for many summers to come. Next time you go out, go green!
What do paper to-go cups and most steel bottles have in common? They lack a handle. To a hot coffee or tea connoisseur, this should be considered blasphemy. Granted, anything beats a wasteful paper cup, but handle-less canteens don’t feel much better in-hand. That’s where the Corkcicle Coffee Mug comes in. Available at Flying Point Surf in a variety of colors, this 16-oz., insulated, stainless-steel mug keeps drinks hot for up to three hours and prevents spill with a tightly sealed lid and non-slip bottom. While perusing the collection, by sure to check out the insulated wine flute, tumblers, bags and more. Main Street Southampton and Sag Harbor. flyingpointsurf.com
You can’t get much more uncultured than throwing your disposable face mask on the ground after exiting a classy East End store or restaurant, so why even be tempted? Switch to a reusable, machine-washable mask such as the fashionable Rachel Craven Linen Face Masks sold at Clic. Available in several neutral tones and a striking Bougainvillea, the mask’s updated design features a metal nose bridge, pleats on each side, heavy-duty cord elastic ear loops and 100% linen material, which just so happens to be stronger than cotton and naturally antibacterial. Buy one for everyone in the family, plus a few extras just in case a mask gets dirty mid outing. If the store doesn’t have the color you want, email [email protected] for a special order. 60 Newtown Lane, East Hampton. clic.com
If you’re looking for a bag for your clean spare masks, consider Stoney Clover Lane’s fabulous Corduroy Open Top Mirror Pouch. This limited-edition seasonal variant of the signature Open Top is made of fall-favorite corduroy in four timeless colors, with gold metal hardware and a mirror inside for checking your mask, hair or makeup. Whatever you choose to store inside this darling zip pouch, you’re sure to draw jealous eyes whenever you pull it. 83 Main Street, East Hampton. stoneycloverlane.com
Ditch wasteful paper napkins and swap them for brushed cotton Picnic Napkins with fringed edges, available at The Monogram Shop. And as the name of the shop implies, yes, you can monogram the white napkins with a wide assortment of fonts and colors. Now, that’s high-class! 19 Newtown Lane, East Hampton. themonogramshops.com
The only thing more eco-friendly than switching disposable containers, napkins and the like for reusable alternatives, is to find an alternative that actually gives back to the local ecosystem. The Sand Straw packs at One Love Beach—which come with three stainless-steel straws, a cleaning brush and a carrying case—do just that. Selecting your set means more than picking your favorite color, with 10% of the net proceeds from the blue straws supporting dolphins and 10% of the black straws benefitting fish. Gold helps out the turtles; silver nurtures the sharks; and the tri-color set goes toward saving the whales. To be fair to all the astounding creatures of the deep, you should probably buy one of each set. 211 Main Street, Greenport. onelovebeach.com
Anyone looking to do their part for Mother Earth while enjoying her beauty at a bucolic picnic, should certainly pick up a few sets of W&P Porter Utensil Sets at Sylvester & Co. Modern General. This set comes with a stainless-steel knife, fork and spoon contained in a sleek, gray silicone case. This product is dishwasher safe, BPA-free and FDA/LFGB-approved.
Of course, you’ll need something to carry your reusable utensils, napkins, straws and pouch in, so a canvas tote is the obvious answer. The Sylvester & Co. Modern General Limited-Edition Eco Market Tote is the very definition of eco chic with recycled cotton/jute materials, black screen-printed design and perfect handle length for carrying on your shoulder. 103 Main Street, Sag Harbor. sylvesterandco.com