Gift Guides

Ten Gifts for the Green-Hearted

November 18, 2010

We asked you what kinds of gifts you were shopping for and we heard green, fair trade, & sustainable. So our gift to you: a guide of the best gifts to give with a conscious this holiday season:

Black Floral Belt: Like a casual treasure discovered in an open market far, far away, this textured statement piece is a brilliant way to add color and craftsmanship to my uniform of jeans and tees. But the best part? It’s hand-embroidered with curly wool thread by Fair Trade artisans in Peru. Plus: Julia Roberts wears one on in Eat, Pray, Love. (Just saying.)

Tree of Life Tote: The perfect, mesmerizing shade of turquoise on this Fair Trade tote says, “Pass the sunblock–and another daiquiri, please.” Which is why I throw this over my shoulder at the slightest hint of mist: it’s a quick way to brighten my outfit–and my day.

Do Goodie Brownies: As if I needed another reason to eat chocolate–I can now add philanthropy to my long and winding list of occasions (“Because it’s noon!” “Because it’s Friday!” “Because I feel like it.”) They’re dizzyingly good–while doing good. All profits go to the Greystone Foundation, which supports jobs, childcare, health care and housing for the underprivileged. Now, don’t you feel better about eating brownies for breakfast?

On the Rocks Set: I love a good pun. And these hand-crafted drink chillers make serving drinks “on the rocks,” that much more fun. I keep two sets chilled and ready to go for weekend company.

Cloud Goblets: Drinking from a extra-luxe, vibrant goblet makes everything a little cooler. Suddenly, morning orange juice and quick cups of water take on unusual importance. Bonus: They’re handmade from recycled glass by artisans in Mexico.

Bike Cog Bottle Opener Keychain: This opener made from a recycled bike gear is an easy way to kick parties into gear. It’s a conversation-starter that serves instant gratification.

Reclaimed Slate Coasters: Made from an elementary school chalkboard, these slate coasters go above and beyond their function. Scribble on them for last-minute dinner place cards, put them together to make coffee table art, use them to leave notes for yourself, or keep them on end tables to keep water stains from ruining the holiday spirit.

Recycled Windshield Wine Goblets: Modern with a touch of medieval heft, these sturdy glasses are an instant shot of design for uninspired table settings. They’re super thick and insulating–so they’re amazing at keeping my white wine crisp. They’re perfect for year-round entertaining, and can handle the inevitable deluge of refills throughout your night’s soiree. And I love sharing their story: each is handmade of recycled glass by artisans in Colombia.

Aquatic Life Tagua Chess Set: This gorgeous set has it all: it’s Fair Trade, eco-friendly and so different than anything I’ve seen. Not only does its board host a small stampede of wild animals (penguins for pawns!), but they’re carved from South American tagua nuts by local artisans–bypassing ivory hunting and supporting sustainably income opportunities for Ecuadorian artists.

Spice Block: I’ve swapped my fatigued little shakers for this smooth, minimalist spice block, handmade from salvaged mahogany. A grown-up solution for seasoning in-a-pinch.

1 Comment

  • Reply Deborah February 16, 2012 at 9:32 am

    There are a ton of great upcycled and recycled gifts on etsy – plus it’s great to support small businesses and artists. This shop uses reclaimed lumber to build furniture, then uses the offcuts to make beautiful items for around the house – This shop and others like it are worth checking out for your eco-minded gift giving.

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