Gift giving can take its toll on the environment. There is lots of packaging and if you are buying items made abroad, shipping contains a carbon cost. Sometimes it’s hard to find that perfect gift, but the best gifts are handmade. It takes a little more effort, and a little more creativity, but it sends a stronger message to that someone special.
If you make gifts yourself, you can save quite a bit. Take a look around the house, go through the kitchen cupboards, the arts and crafts closet, search through the clothes to be given away, and start pulling recyclables out of the garbage. You would be surprised what you can make with landfill items.
Here are a few great green gift ideas that you can make at home, with friends, family, or on your own.
- Food is a great way to show appreciation. Who doesn’t like a nice home cooked meal or some yummy treats? Make them from scratch though….no cheating and buying the prepared mixes (then you have the throw-away boxes to deal with)
Infused alcohols, oils, and vinegars – use recycled bottles and gift-wrapping from around the house (old fabric or newspapers).
Homemade hot sauce or chocolate sauce
Homemade mixed spices
- Potpourri – take a walk outside and grab leaves, flowers, seeds, etc. Throw them in a recycled jar, sprinkle some essential oils, and tie some ribbon around it.
- Potted plants
- Homemade organic body lotions or cleansing creams and scrubs. Use a recycled bottle to put it in and decorate it with a homemade label.
- Make reusable grocery bags out of old clothing or fabric.
- Make your own paper out of recycled paper, herbs, and flowers. Click here for different recipes.
Gifts that kids can make:
- A coupon book for mom and dad
- Macaroni necklaces
- Picture frames (two different kinds)
Cloth, cardboard, and glue
Popsicle sticks, cardboard, construction paper, and glue
Or combine all these gifts together into a homemade gift basket.
For more ideas, click here: “Homemade Eco Gifts”