Gifting has become trickier in the past decade. We stream music rather than own CDs and most of us have subscriptions which lessons the need for DVDs. Homewares are very difficult to pick for someone else and besides, many of us are trying to cut down on the amount of ‘stuff’ we own. Concern over the environment has led many people to live more sustainably which is fantastic news for the future of the planet, but it does make birthdays, Mother's Day, anniversaries, Father's Day, Christmas and other holiday gifts far more challenging to find.
We all know that it’s big business, industry and government-level decisions that will have the biggest effect on the environment. However, we do have consumer power and if the majority of us change our buying habits, we can confront the climate crisis together and put pressure on organisations and governments to change their policies and practices.
With a growing population to sustain, recycling is far from a perfect solution. There is an energy cost and a carbon footprint in the recycling process. The only way to really reduce waste is to stop making so much, to buy sustainably-made products and reuse them. So, how can we incorporate this into gifting? Especially for those friends and family members who are particularly eco-conscious.
Buying gifts for eco-friendly friends may not be as challenging as you think. You only need to explore our eco-friendly feel-good gifts to see how many wonderful options there are. What’s more, our gifts are focused on comfort, inspiration and relaxation so are designed to spark positive vibes.
So, let’s take it a step further and look not only at sustainable gifts but at feel-good gifts that could actually help to support the environment.
Here are some of our favourite feel-good gifts that support the environment:
Plants, Flowers And Seed Gifts
We are running out of wild spaces. Too much of what was once countryside is
now farmland but, even before that, England’s traditional landscape was very different. Where now there are fields there were once forests. Now we are fighting to help save the bees and butterflies where once we had a huge range of insects and wildlife. Where foxes crept through trees instead of around rubbish bins and a whole other world of burrowing creatures existed below ground.
Our landscape has changed very quickly over a relatively short period of history and if it continues at this rate then we might lose all of our wonderful wildlife in Britain.
It begins with birds, bees and butterflies. These creatures help wildlife thrive because they are pollinators, seed-spreaders and the undervalued workers of the land. Yet, many of their wild spaces have been destroyed. We have built houses and farms and concreted over green spaces. Yet, those of us with gardens (or even window sills and hanging baskets, can plant in a way that attracts bees and butterflies.
Plants are the ultimate gift that keeps on giving! Whilst cut flowers can be uplifting, they won’t last (and they’re not great for the planet either). When you buy outdoor plants as gifts you aren’t just giving a gift a loved one can treasure for a long time, but one that will also be appreciated by all sorts of British wildlife including birds, bees, butterflies and other insects. Most garden centres will even specially label plants that help bees or butterflies thrive.
Seedboms also work very well. They are not only filled with insect-supporting seeds but they're simple and fun to scatter. You don’t even need your own garden as they're ideal for scattering in parks and in the countryside where wildflowers have significantly decreased over the past few decades. Children love seed bombs and seed balls and they can also make great party bag tokens, wedding favours and stocking fillers.
Our favourites are:
Bird Feeders And Bee Houses
Apart from planting wildflowers and other wildlife-supporting plants, you can also offer bees and birds food or even places to live in your garden. You don’t even
need a large garden, though you might have more success if there’s some wildlife nearby. There is great stress on bees to find homes these days and, amazing as they are, they tire quickly in the sun and so it can be devastating for them to have to travel too far to find nectar.
There are some beautiful bee houses available and these make for wonderful presents. One of our most popular gift boxes, amongst nature lovers, is The Bee Box. This contains our beautiful bee honeycomb trinket plate, bee design notebook, a bee bom seed bomb and the amazing bee keyring which contains life-saving revival food for tired bees.
Bird feeders have long been a way to attract an array of beautiful birds to a garden. As well as feeding the birds though, you’re also helping with seed spreading as seed-eating birds end up distributing seeds to other places.
Reusable Coffee Cup / Water Bottle / Bento Lunchbox
Reusables are not always a great gift for the eco-conscious because many who are trying to live more sustainably will already have reusable coffees, water
bottles and other items designed to negate the need for buying unnecessary plastic. Having an excess of reusables rather goes against their purpose. However, these can be wonderful gifts for eco-conscious consumers to gift to those who wish to be but have not yet adopted these changes.
Bento lunchboxes are also particularly good because, not only are they designed for regular use, but they look in freshness so well there's no need to wrap your food in cling film or foil. Plus, the sectional structure encourages diversity in diet.
Food Gift Boxes
When in doubt, there’s always food! There are few people who don’t love receiving some luxury chocolate, cheese (or vegan cheese), drinks and other speciality snacks. You can even put together a food hamper or make it easier for yourself and select one of our eco-friendly food gift boxes. Here are some of our favourites:
- Vegan Snack Box
- Vegan Chocolate Gift Box
- Vegan Chocolate Selection Gift Box
- Luxury Vegan Hot Chocolate Gift Box
Plant-based foods tend to be more sustainable but remember to take packaging into account, as well as how ethically products are sourced.
National Trust Membership
This is not a cheap option but it is an amazing gift for nature and history lovers. The National Trust runs many areas of natural beauty, historical properties (including country houses and estates), heritage sites and some places notable for a link with popular culture. As a charitable and membership organisation,
there is a cost to visiting these Trust sites. However, membership can grant access to individuals, families, children and seniors for a year. Adult membership starts at £84 per year and prices are less for under 25s and children. Couple memberships start at £139.20 and it’s £91.20 for single-parent families and £146.40 for families of two adults and their children.
National Trust membership would certainly be considered a substantial gift in terms of cost but they can give nature and history lovers many fun, educational and fascinating days out throughout the year.
Being closer to nature can help to nurture a love for our natural world as well as improve overall wellbeing. Furthermore, the National Trust uses its funds for many things but among them are tree planting and preserving wild spaces and wildlife habitats.