With family time, celebration, acknowledging everything we are grateful for and making plans for a year ahead, it is no wonder why so many of us consider Christmas to be the jolliest time of the year. But in the days leading up to Christmas, we all seem to be in a rush. Taking care of last minute shopping for gifts, decorations and cooking ingredients often turn into a shopping spree.
Pressed by our tight schedules, long waiting lines and the overall hype that everything needs to be new, flashy and perfect, a consumer beast in us awakens and starts making quick decisions that eventually end up turning into a staggering amount of waste. Some projections suggest shocking statistics that over the festive season in the UK we create 30% more trash than during the rest of the year. Ironically, rather than being respectful to Mother Nature during the Christmas season, we apply extra pressure to already overloaded landfills and risk our health and the future of the planet we live in and will leave to our children.
Luckily, each year more and more people are starting to realise just how destructive this behaviour can be and they are slowly opening their minds to more sustainable practices. However, this is easier said than done as choosing to go green can be a bit of a challenge.
If you are like us and wish your Christmas shopping to reflect your commitment to preserving the environment and you respect the value of recycled items and presents with an interesting provenance, but not quite sure where to start – we’ve prepared a special treat for you today!
Below you may find an ultimate list of sustainable Christmas gift ideas ready for the taking.
Meaningful Christmas Gifts
Don’t fall for the flashy and trendy. Chances are such a choice won’t be worthwhile. Say no to plastics and temporary solutions and choose something meaningful instead. Clever Christmas gifts, tailored to one’s personality and preferences, will put a smile on everyone’s face and give you a good rep of being thoughtful while at the same time keeping waste at a minimum.
Vintage Globe £62.00
Vintage = Unique
Preloved and second-hand presents are no longer taboo, so don’t fear thinking outside of the box and opting for something extraordinary just because it doesn’t come with brand new cellophane on it. With preloved gifts, you will be able to afford more valuable items at lower prices, hard-to-get pieces and unique objects no one else will be able to source. A second-hand book, an antique vase, bowl or figurine are proven to be timeless.
Symbolism Book £8.99
Airi Votive Clear 6 Cm. £9.00
And if you are shopping for kids, vintage toys are not only a good idea in terms of budget and the environment, but they are also built with quality in mind and, even more importantly, they will help you convey the right message and teach your children to be environmentally aware.
Moskvitch Pedal Car £250.00
The Value of Recycled Presents
Products made from recycled and upcycled materials also count, and so do objects that you already own but feel someone else would find more benefit from.
Good Quality = Less Waste
This might be a commonplace, but quality over quantity is a saying that cannot be emphasised enough. Vintage products are built to last (they already proved it), so there will be no need for replacing them anytime soon.
Vintage Paint Brushes £10.00
Budget- and Environmentally-friendly
Once considered to be pricey, sustainable gifts can actually be lowering not only your carbon footprint but also the pressure on your wallet during the Christmas season. If you know where to shop for sustainable Christmas presents, you can score amazing deals while not having to break into a bank to afford them. And not just that, you might also encourage your recipients to change their habits too.
Nothing Beats the Plants
If going green is your number one priority this festive season, look no further than potted plants and herbs. With the urban jungle trend being on the rise, chances are your present will be much appreciated.
Potted plants are the most eco-friendly decor there is, they clean the air, provide psychological shelter, and make for beautiful decor. On the other hand, potted herbs are a perfect gift for any culinary enthusiast who will find pleasure in the pleasant aroma they provide.
Retro Herb Pots £12.00
Clay or concrete planter is a must, and if you are shopping for a boho lover, consider a macrame plant holder or a rattan plant stand too.
Still, not everyone is a plant person, so it doesn’t hurt to scout their preferences before making a final decision.
In this day and age, the most valuable gift you can offer to someone is your time. If they mean to you, buy them something sustainable and personalised, wrap it with recyclable paper, but don’t leave it to presents to speak how you feel about your loved ones. Create memories by slowing down with them and appreciating the moments together. It is those moments Christmas is all about.