Sustainable Handmade Christmas Presents

Gingerbread Boxes and Mason Jars

When it comes to handmade gifts it’s important not overload yourself with too much work. Just pick one or two, otherwise come December you’ll resent what seemed a very clever idea in November. With that in mind here’s some ideas on easy, inexpensive sustainable Christmas gifts

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It’s fair to say that the gingerbread boxes and mason jars pictured above are for the accomplished baker. If you’d like to give these a try you can find a step-by-step tutorial on the source website Recipe Tin Eats, just skip the cellophane wrapper, which is not recyclable, and wrap in compostable greaseproof paper instead.

Vegan Mincemeat

Store bought mince meat is full of palm oil, which due to unsustainable farming methods contributes to rainforest deforestation and extinction of orangutans. Not very festive! So make your own. The link I’ve included here is a recipe for Vegan Mincement. Even if you’re not vegan or vegetarian it’s always worth reducing your intake meat products where you can, particularly when it won’t be missed. And if you want to be extra sustainable you can source organic package-free ingredients from one of zero waste stores listed on my Eco Map.

I love these paper Christmas Tree Decorations from Sostrene Green and think they’d make a quirky gift for a houseproud friend.

Ombre Yarn Letter

Yarn Letters seems to be all the rage at the moment and you can pick up wooden or cardboard letters in most craft shops. Or if you’re feeling particularly frugal you could make your own from scrap cardboard. If you opt for this I’d suggest doubling up on the cardboard to make it rigid and use cotton, bamboo or natural wool and paper flowers will make your cute Christmas present compostable too!

Flower Decorated Letter

I also love this flower decorated letter and as above using paper flowers would make this gift more sustainable, and nicer in my opinion, than plastic flowers.

Headphone Holder

Cute headphone organisers like these ones are available to buy from makers on Etsy, but they’d be super easy to make yourself with some small pieces of leather or felt and a snap fastener.

Planted Winebox

For the green-fingered how about recycling an old wine box into a planter? Unfortunately in Ireland it’s not possible to buy plants grown without pesticides but you can make the gift more sustainable by choosing hardy perennials that will last year to year or annuals that self seed, like winter pansies. And if you can consider buying from some of the socially-minded garden centres like that  run by the disability charity Enable Ireland in Sandymount, Dublin 4 and the one run by social enterprise WALK in Walkinstown, Dublin 12.

More Ideas

For more Sustainable Christmas ideas click here.

E

Published by Elaine Butler

I am a circular design consultant helping manfacturers prepare for the circular economy

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