This Christmas Gift Guide was put together in collaboration with the brands.
So, finally that special time of the year has arrived: Christmas is around the corner – well, a few more week left until then. This is the best time to think about your Christmas gifts (if you have not started yet) because you can avoid rush, low stocks and it gets you into a festive mood just like Christmas baking!
This year I’m kicking off the season with my Green Christmas Gift Guide, with fantastic items coming from indie brands and small businesses, and most of them are also either eco-friendly or ethically produced – or both! Shopping local and with online small businesses are important for me and for all of us. I happened to study economics so I know that they play an important role within communities and they have a major economic impact. As for the green and ethical aspect, these are very important issues for me. I’d like to create awareness, because making conscious choices when deciding about a purchase is now more possible than ever, we don’t need to grab the first thing off a supermarket shelf. We can do better, by making positive choices for people and planet. Money is a vote which you can use every time you go shopping. By using your spending power wisely you can help to create a better, healthier and greener world.
With this guide I wish you a very merry Christmas season. We’re all here to make a difference and spread kindness. Peace & love.
Recycled Sari Necklaces from Jewelled Buddha
I’m delighted to introduce you to Harjit and her brand Jewelled Buddha. Her team produces sophisticated edit of conscious fashion accessories from around the world. I’ve kindly been sent this turquoise six string sari necklace which I now wear for all sorts of occasions.
How is it being made? The journey starts with sourcing pre-loved sari’s. These are sourced from sari traders in Delhi who in turn buy them off a network of “bhandiwali’s” or utensil sellers. They travel all over India buying and bartering utensils from home to home, in exchange for vintage saris. It’s an amazing system that’s been around for generations in India. The saris are carefully selected for their beautiful colours, textures, quality and designs. The saris are then transformed into scarves and hand stitched by Kantha Artisans. Whatever sari material is left over when making scarves, is used to make our sari necklaces. It’s a meticulous and labour intensive process that involves filling prepared tubes of sari material with wooden prayer beads, stitching them into place with colourful cotton threads to produce exclusive, one-of-a kind, vibrant and versatile necklaces.
Each purchase empowers marginalised women and men to earn a sustainable wage so they can live independent, dignified lives in an environment that offers safe working conditions and flexible hours.
For Her Vegan Wash Box from The Ethical Gift Box
The driving force behind The Ethical Gift Box are all the years the creators worked in environmental management and also growing up in Indonesia surrounded by poverty and inequality. This is why they created the brand: to source and create beautiful ethical gifts that give twice – gifts that give back to people and the environment. Their ethos include fair trade principles ton promote equality and fair trading between the developed and developing world. Recycle and upcycle whenever is possible. Promote local and UK based businesses. Their products are cruelty free, avoid animal testing. They fully support sustainability and they want to promote a more sustainable way of living.
There are two options to purchase gift boxes: buy pre-made boxes or build a box with items you like to include. I have received a For Her Vegan Wash Box gift box containing a lovely upcycled wash bag, solid shampoo bar, lip balm in tin, lavender soap and relaxing plant wax candle. It was packaged simply but beautifully in a most caring, environmentally friendly way: a simple cardboard box and pretty blue and golden raffia ribbons.
Adopt An Olive Tree with Pomora
Pomora is an adoption program. It has been created for ethical foodies bringing them closer to the food producers who share an ethical vision. The brand’s ethos are revolving around fair trade: everyone in the food supply chain should be equitably rewarded, provenance: it’s important to know what is in your food and from where it came from, and respect for Mother Earth: relationship with our planet should be one of reciprocity.
How it works? Choose with which one of the two award-winning growers – Carmelo from Sicily or Antonio from Campania – you would like to have your tree. You’ll receive your Adoption Pack with a certificate showing your tree and a booklet of information about your tree. Then each quarter you’ll receive a shipment of 3x250ml tins of oil from your tree alternating between a plain oil quarter and a flavoured oil quarter.
RRP: Adoptions cost £29 per quarter on a subscription basis. (You can cancel at any time.)
Mackmyra Gruvguld Swedish Single Malt Whiskey from The Summerton Club
There’s no gift guide without a good drink being included. The Summerton Club is a craft spirits members club. You’ll receive the finest aged alcohol from around the world (brandies, rums, whiskies and more) directly to your door. You choose the frequency for your premium spirits subscription box and you can opt for monthly, bi-monthly or quarterly package. I have received Mackmyra Gruvguld Swedish Single Malt Whiskey, which was the bottle of the month in October. I myself not a whiskey drinker but my husband do like whiskies and he really fancied the idea of breaking his Irish whisky collection with this special Swedish one.
All the ingredients for this Swedish distillery are sourced locally, from local barley and bread yeast, to the Swedish peat and juniper branches used for smoking. They even use local Swedish oak for a number of their barrels, trees planted in the King’s Forest of Visingsö, originally destined for future Swedish warships.
RRP: Membership costs £50 per delivery.
Organic Cotton Outfits from Frugi
I’ve been a long time Frugi fan for their bold colours and cute designs. I just adore colourful children clothes! Frugi believes that superb design, great ethics and passionate people can help to change the world – and I share these ethics in 100% They only use organic cotton grown by small farms, and their outerwear is made from recycled plastic bottles (36 recycled plastic drinking bottles makes ONE winter jacket). Also, they use no harmful chemicals or dangerous dyes – definitely good for those with eczema like my son and other allergies. All Frugi suppliers are operating at a high ethical standard and creating the right environment for the people to work.
I have received a set of wonderful Christmas outfits for my little people and both of them were pretty chuffed: Bobcat didn’t want to take his comfy Finn Fairisle Chritmas jumper off and wanted to go to sleep in that (I mean.. camper vans! How cool is that?) and Lau just looked adorable in her festive Goose applique tee and a matching skirt.
RRP: Camper Van Christmas jumper – £30, Joseph jeans – £30, Scarlett slouchy tee – £21, Tabby twirly skirt – £28, Norah tights – £14
Ethical Fashion Items from Hideous Clothing
Hideous is a new, ethical, eccentric, independent, quirky, idiosyncratic, unconventional, unusual, outlandish, cool, sexy, original clothing brand. But they are also ethical, organic and sustainable. In my view the only way forward is this: the very opposite of fast-fashion. All Hideous designs are produced from organic materials in an ethically accredited, wind powered factory. They are then hand finished using low waste printing technology in a UK factory which is powered entirely by renewables, mostly on-site solar. They are proud of their a traceable supply chain which means you can find the details about where each item is made, who made it and how it got there.
I have picked baseball tees from their collection as I love baseball tees! I love the quirky and funny designs and they are super soft and comfortable to wear – I currently wear one of them whilst i’m writing this!
RRP: from £19,-
Birdball Seed Birdfeeder from Green&Blue
The innovative Birdball Seed bird feeder provides garden birds with a varied and reliable source of food. The simple yet stylish design offers safe, year-round feeding for garden birds. Green&Blue bird feeders are British made and available in a range of colours. This unique bird feeder is easy to fill and to clean, weather-proof and safe to leave outside all year round. The seed feeder makes an ideal gift for gardeners and nature lovers everywhere, especially those passionate about stunning design.
Green&Blue is passionate about protecting and enhancing the world we live in, making sure there are green spaces and wildlife for future generations and working to reverse some of the damage we’ve done to our planet since the industrial revolution.
I have been kindly gifted with a beautiful lime green coloured one of these and it is now used by many little suburban birds, including some parakeets!
Kartel is inspired by the landscape and traditions of beautiful Scotland, combining a proud industrial tradition and a deep connection and affinity with the land. All Kartel watches are designed in Scotland with each borne of a meticulous design process. Kartel has always drawn inspiration from its Scottish roots and now we’re making that connection physical with a selection of the finest Scottish tweeds.
I have been kindly gifted with a KT-KENDRICK 40mm-RGMS. Kartel uses SAE 304 grade stainless steel for its new generation of watch cases. It has a higher corrosion resistance than regular steel making it ideal for the wide variety of situations a wrist watch will be expected to perform in. 304 grade steel is also desirable for its ease of sanitation, a real benefit when worn next to the skin for long periods.