If you are going to a party and want to bring a gift for your host, why not select an original, memorable gift that will help the planet and possibly inspire everyone who admires it—a green gift.
What to gift someone who loves the environment?
Giving green gifts is a great way to spread knowledge about how to reduce our carbon footprints. Just about any gift you imagine can be given greenly, from food and wine to home decor, jewelry, an clothing.
In this day and age of ecological awareness, giving green gifts is easier than ever, thanks to the Internet. Here are a few sites selling products that make excellent green gifts:
Ecoist.com offers fair trade handbags and housewares made from repurposed paper goods like food packages, candy wrappers, and movie bill boards.
Ecoexpress.com has the slogan “uncommon gifts for the common good.” They have everything from eco-friendly solar-powered gadgets to organic fruit and nut baskets.
Ecoshoppe.com was founded by Greg Horn, author of Living Green: A Practical Guide to Simple Sustainability, and offers a fun assortment of eco-friendly gifts, as well as innovative eco-friendly products for home and office.
For beautiful and functional glassware made from 100 percent post consumer recycled glass, visit the Green Glass Company website(www.greenglass.com).
Also check out custom jewelry made with found sea glass from By the Sea Jewelry.
Grounds for Peace offers necklaces formed from used coffee grounds.The sculpted works of art even smell a bit like coffee, delivering anaromatic jolt throughout the day.
Whenever possible, it’s a great idea not to gift a brand new item, but to give an activity, service, or gift certificate.
Consider these green gifting options: An America the Beautiful National Parks and Federal Recreational Lands Annual Pass allows free entrance for one year into federally managed public lands, including the National Parks.
The pass can be purchased at www.recreation.gov. Donate to the recipient’s favorite charity or present it to an organization that matches their interests and values.
For example, you can symbolically adopt a wild animal or a rainforest in the recipient’s name.
Purchase a membership to a local museum, theater company, botanical garden, or other similar organization. Put together an organic picnic basket to enjoy a day in nature. You might want to include a blanket from www.bluelotusblankets.com,made with a fiber called Fortrel EcoSpun™, produced from 100 percent post-consumer recycled plastic bottles.
Give a gift card. While sometimes judged as unimaginative, gift cards are actually very environmentally responsible, when you consider the amount of carbon emitted and trees felled in the production of unwanted gifts each year. Gift cards also don’t require wrapping and in some cases are reusable.
Although re-gifting is traditionally considered taboo, it is one of the greenest gifts you can give. Break tradition and pass on something special, like a family heirloom. Or spruce up something the recipient has always admired.
Your thoughtfulness is sure to be appreciated.Once you have your green gift, be sure the wrapping is environmentally responsible as well.
We will save many forests when enough of us implement green gift-wrapping ideas such as these:
Reuse sturdy gift boxes and bags. Be sure to purchase ones that are attractive, so they will be reused again and again.
Buy recycled, post-consumer content wrapping paper, or hemp wrapping paper, available from eartheasy.com/gift_wrapping.htm. Use another usable item to wrap with, such as a scarf or decorated handkerchief.
Reuse newspaper comics or pretty pictures from old calendars as wrapping paper. Look for companies like Eco Express, who send their gifts in attractive, earth-friendly packaging.
Create decorative fabric gift bags. These special gift holders can be reused again and again, and may even start a fun tradition when passed around among family and friends.
Buy cloth gift bags from Patagonia, $2 each, these bags are made of excess material from the cutting room floor. Simply add a large bow to hard-to-wrap items, or dare to present your gift without wrapping. You can still have the recipient close their eyes,for the surprise effect. Or consider foregoing gift wrap for a treasure hunt, complete with clues that lead the recipient to the present.
When it comes to gifts, people often say, “It’s the thought that counts.” Green gifting is a significant way to help protect the future of everyone on the globe. Now that’s thoughtful!