By Saoirse Nisbett and Amy Connaughton
Sustainability. Probably the biggest buzzword of 2019 and, if things persist, its more than likely that it will carry into 2020. The idea of living sustainably isn’t a new one but it is a movement that is extremely timely at the moment. It involves living in a loop and leaving no trace, be it tangible waste or that of your carbon footprint.
2019 has brought with it, a massive push for the people of Ireland to live sustainably, this coincides with the impending doom of the climate crisis thus leaving the public striving to make a change for the better; be it in the form of reusable coffee cups, reusable straws or bamboo toothbrushes, almost everyone in Dublin can be seen edging towards a more sustainable lifestyle.
However, leading a fully sustainable life isn’t as accessible as some may like, until recently. Enter The Green Flea. The Green Flea is a market dedicated to all things sustainable started by Alex O’Neill of The Glitter Bugs, a business specialising in producing biodegradable glitter. Although the idea of a wholly eco-friendly, sustainable-product focused market isn’t a new one, there was a gap in the market and Alex saw her chance.
“I saw market spaces all around Dublin closing one by one and when I saw the Dublin Flea Market close, I wanted to make sure there was a market like it available so I thought well I’m sure I’m not the only one thinking this so why don’t I start something?”
Alex has been running a market every month since June of this year and launched The Green Flea in September. The Green Flea isn’t attached to one specific venue or building and so, it gives the chance to showcase new venues while enabling the market itself to exist in the city centre, a “mobile-market” as Alex calls it.
Alex has always been aware of global warming and climate issues, but it wasn’t until she found herself needing an alternative to plastic glitter that her entrepreneurial side surfaced. “I saw glitter as a ready-made microplastic and because I love glitter so much, I just had to find an alternative, seeing as I couldn’t justify putting this plastic made in awful working conditions on my skin anymore. I couldn’t find any bio-glitter in Ireland, so I decided to fix the problem myself,” says Alex.
It was through selling her glitter in various markets around the country that Alex saw the need for a new market and how important it is to provide a marketplace for independent eco-entrepreneurs.
The Green Flea will take place again in December, with all details and updates available on The Glitter Bugs’ Instagram.
TheCity.ie went along to find out what you can expect at one of their next markets.