With the cost of living crisis impacting families and businesses all over the country, Christmas 2022 is likely to be a challenging one for many. While the increased cost of living might discourage you from shopping independently, it’s more important than ever for us to make small changes and support independent businesses with a purpose.
All of the brands featured in this list not only make and sell exceptional products you’ll be thrilled to gift, but also have a greater purpose behind them, and a story to tell. All hold key values relating to ethical employment, sustainability and having a social impact, either through those they employ, or how they give back to communities from their profits.
We’re excited to share some of our favourite brands to help you shop consciously while still finding unique presents that your family, friends and colleagues will love.
1. Voice International
Who else would top our list for sustainable gift ideas? We are proud that our jewellery is handmade from sustainably-sourced materials by expertly-trained artisans who are employed ethically, into creative, sustainable employment that allows them to raise above the poverty line and achieve their dreams.
This winter saw the arrival of our gorgeous Dusk Duo: the stunning Dusk Necklace and Dawn Studs. Get party ready by adding a touch of sparkle to any festive outfit with this polished brass duo. If statement drops are more your style, complete your winter wardrobe with our best-selling hammered brass Radiance Drops.
If you’re browsing for a gift for someone special, our all-time favourite Promise Drops are always a Christmas hit, and our Bravery Studs have been reimagined with asymmetrical hammered brass shapes to make them even more special. Both of these statement earrings are made from brass and sustainably-sourced Ankole.
We are absolutely obsessed with the Terra shirt from our friends, gngr bees. This gorgeous, white linen shirt is made from OEKO-TEX ® certified un-dyed organic linen, which is recyclable and biodegradable.
The oversize design makes it the perfect layer to add to your outfits whatever the season, from layering over swimwear and activewear, to wearing over jeans and pairing with your Bravery studs in Paris… Yes, we love the Terra shirt so much that we took it to Paris with us, where we shot some photography for our exciting giveaway collaboration with gngr bees.
Sustainability is at the heart of gngr bees’ purpose. Their clothing - primarily activewear - is all made from materials that have been disposed of, reclaimed, upcycled. Each collection is finite and so once it’s gone, it’s gone!
3. Yes Friends
An organic t-shirt for just £7.99? Yes Friends, you read that correctly. Yes Friends is an organic clothing designer and manufacturer that exists to make affordable ethical clothing the mainstream, and you can gift a timeless organic t-shirt in white, black, sage green or dusty pink for less than £10.
If you’re looking for something more cosy for the winter months, Yes Friends also make hoodies from organic, Fairtrade cotton. All of the clothing is manufactured in a factory powered by wind and solar.
4.VENT for Change
Who doesn’t experience joy the first time they write in a brand new notebook? The recycled Sucseed notebook from VENT is the perfect Christmas gift for the eco-conscious stationery-enthusiast in your life.
The notebook is available in A5 or A6 sizes, and four earthy, pastel colours: coffee bean, kiwi fruit, cherry and lavender. The colour comes from the manufacture of the cover - amazingly, each one is made from a mix of recycled paper and reclaimed coffee beans, kiwi, cherry husk or lavender flower.
What’s more, VENT gives 10% of its net sales turnover to supporting children’s education projects worldwide meaning your purchase makes a social impact too.
5. The Campbell Collection
Passionate about the handmade and the hands behind it? The Campbell Collection’s lifestyle and interior collections are made in collaboration with artisans in India and are rooted in traditional craft techniques. These beautiful handcrafted homewares take time to make and require a lot of skill.
When it comes to Christmas gifting, we love these block-printed linen napkins, which are available in red and green. While not strictly Christmas designs, they’ll add a festive splash of colour to your Christmas dinner display, while being usable all year round.
So if you’re shopping for someone who has recently moved home, or who is looking to lift their home interior game in the new year, these hand-crafted luxuries make the perfect present.
Sadly, yoga mat and accessories brand Stride is closing down on 31st December due to the rising costs of running an independent business. The silver lining is that it’s not too late to ensure that none of these high-quality products are wasted, and you can snap up a sustainably-made Christmas gift at a reduced price.
Stride’s eco-friendly yoga mats are made to last, from biodegradable rubber that comes from a sustainable forest. Say goodbye to toxic PVC!
I recently bought the Calli mat and can attest to its durability and grippiness when doing both yoga and cardio exercises. With everything online now up to 50% off, it’s a great time to purchase a gift for your loved one with the new year’s resolution to both shop more sustainably and get fit in 2023.
7. La Basketry
We’re struggling to think of a better Christmas gift idea for crafty friends than this Weave Your Own Christmas Baubles kit from La Basketry, an online boutique that celebrates all things woven.
If you’re looking for something less DIY, La Basketry sells baskets and other homeware hand-woven by artisans in Senegal, where basket weaving is a tradition passed down through generations of women. La Basketry captures this tradition through their unique designs, all of which are hand-woven by female artisans they have met and worked with.
When it comes to sustainable skincare, UpCircle is my favourite brand.
I am a huge fan of the cleansing balm, which makes a great gift because it’s suitable for all skin types (even the most sensitive). It’s power to remove every last trace of my SPF, foundation and mascara while leaving my skin feeling clean and soft (no trace of oil!) is nothing short of miraculous. It’s made from powdered apricot stones, a discarded by-product from the apricot oil industry that’s full of vitamin E.
We hope our ethical and sustainable winter gift guide has inspired you to shop consciously from brands with purpose this festive season. Happy shopping, and we hope you love the brands and products we’ve featured as much as we do! We wish you a very Merry Christmas from everyone at Voice International.