I LOVE Christmas - I love seeing my family, I love the build up, I love the decorations, I love the food (really love the food), I love the cosy evenings and frosty mornings, but more than anything else, I love choosing presents. I think all year round about gift ideas for family and friends and I note ideas down when they come to me, or when I spot something special in the shops or online (my memory is atrocious)! I like to make sure I've picked out something I know will mean a lot.
I hate the thought of giving something that won't be used and will ultimately end up in landfill, and we started to choose presents more sustainably a little while ago. My daughters are used to receiving one or two carefully chosen gifts rather than a stocking full of things that will break or be discarded, and I would rather treat family and friends to a subscription or experience than something poorly made. We choose paper wrapping that can be recycled and likewise with cards.
If you would like to choose more sustainable Christmas gifts this year, read on for some ideas!
FLOWERS, GARDENING AND PLANTS
Take a look at Freddie's Flowers for a beautiful subscription of gorgeous and sustainably packaged flowers. You can have them delivered weekly or monthly, and each delivery comes with an information card showing you how to arrange the bouquet. Bloom & Wild are another brilliant brand offering flowers as a gift, and you can choose from flowers that fit through the letterbox for you to arrange yourself, or hand tied bouquets. They also offer indoor plants, wreaths and extras to make the delivery more special. If you're buying for a gardener, head to Lizzie Fox at The Rose Press Garden for bulbs, seeds and accessories, or to set up a gift subscription and send someone a monthly supply of seasonal bulbs and seeds for their garden. I sell bird food starter sets which make a brilliant gift and went down very well last Christmas - all plastic-free and benefiting the birds in the garden as well as the lucky person who gets to watch them! Bloombox are great for indoor plant subscriptions and gifts, and you can shop by room or size of plant. You can also send a one off gift or subscription of indoor plants via Leaf Envy. I absolutely love The Gluttonous Gardener - they supply trees, plants and gift sets, and my favourite is easily their Go Sloe set, which comes with three sloe plants and a bottle of gin!
FOOD AND DRINK
Craft Gin Club are just the ultimate gin subscription in my eyes, and a one off box or subscription is a great gift. Each box includes a full sized bottle of gin, tonics and mixers, ingredients for a cocktail of the month, perfectly paired snacks and a magazine. If you aren't buying for a gin fan, The Cocktail Man sells cocktail kits so that your lucky recipient can make their favourite drink at home. Cheese enthusiasts will love a subscription or pick 'n' mix box from the artisans at The Cheese Geek, or a cheese hamper from Paxton and Whitfield, and those with a sweet tooth will be hugely touched by a tin of beautiful, hand-decorated biscuits from Biscuiteers. Those who prefer to bake their own treats will no doubt love a set from Baked In. Coffee Story sell coffee subscriptions and gift sets from ethical suppliers (and donate 10% of their profits to charity).
ARTS, CRAFTS AND HOBBIES
I absolutely love knitting sets from Wool and the Gang - they put together brilliant packs with detailed instructions so you can make anything, from a scarf to something more complicated. Sculpd sell air-dry clay kits so you can create your own lamps and pots, and Artful sell sets for a budding artist - choose from watercolours, pastels, inks, Lino printing or calligraphy. Craftiosity sell craft kit subscriptions.
There are wine subscriptions, magazine subscriptions, candles and beauty kits, tasting days, experiences and countless other thoughtful and sustainable gifts to give - I'm sure you can suggest lots of other ideas and I would love to see them in the comments! Enjoy your Christmas shopping!