Im sorry. Its my first Christmas post. I know, I know, its October. But there is a meaning to my madness and a passion in my soul, so forgive me???? Read on if you can stomach it………
The time of year when we start to seek out the perfect gifts to give our loved ones is nearly upon us. Like so many of us, I love to give a gift, and I am one of those people that absolutely loves Christmas shopping. I adore everything about it, and am quite methodical in my approach. Its about now that I start thinking about what I think people would like, (we don’t do lists in our family) and start window shopping and online surfing for items or ideas.
This year I have been learning the art of restraint and no spending! I completed a month of no make up buying in September, then took part in no Spend October the month after. Both tested me, Im not gonna lie! I did learn a few things from doing these tasks though, one of them being shopping more mindfully, and it got me thinking about the gifts I buy for others, and the items I like to receive. Inspired by this, I thought I would put a little guide together for you of some little, simple ways that we can be consciously buying, and give something back.
I hope its useful x
Christmas cards, christmas wrapping paper, all part of the christmas festivities. just the simple act of choosing were your paper etc comes from, can be making a contribution to charities. Here are some great ones I have found.
Marks and Spencer charity cards – Always great quality and available on 3 for 2 Details here
Next – They do a prosecco and shopping range, I need say no more Details here
The White Company – Gorgeous paper supporting vulnerable women and children Details here
Marie Curie Cancer care – 100% of profits go to helping people fighting this disease Details here
Gifts for Women supporting Women
Share a Hug bangle – Posh Totty in collaboration with Women for Women International see full details here
This lovely sterling silver bangle has been designed by Alice Rivers-Cripps, the founder of Posh Totty, to help women who are survivors of war, rebuild their lives. It dosent need spelling out how these women have often had their lives destroyed by the loss of their children, husbands, parents. The collaboration came about after Alice visited war torn Kosovo in 2016, and met some of the women that the charity helps. I love the message of the “Share a hug bangle”, and represents the embrace that the refugee women received when crossing the border. From each bangle sold, £20 is given directly to the charity. You can also have your bracelet personalised with up to 22 letter. I think its beautiful and symbolic.
“Mother” Cashmere Sweater – Supports women in Refuge Support Europe See full details here
Cashmere is the ultimate in luxury casual, and this sweatshirt is no exception. Born from a collaboration between brands Selfish Mother and The Bonnimob, £20 from each sale goes direct to the charity. Sales of this sweatshirt helps Refuge Support Europe aid in particular, pregnant women that are finding themselves having to give birth in refugee camps. It provides them a safe enviroment to be with and bond with their new born child. A worthy cause for sure.
Oliver Bonus – Large Fig Candle supports The Eve Appeal womens cancer charity see full details here
Oliver Bonas, one of my favourite shops, has a whole selection of goods on offer that support the amazing work of The Eve Appeal. The work that the Eve Appeal does, is focused on all five gynalogical cancers that affect women. The Eve Appeal sole aim is to stop these cancers before they start. From every sale of one of these candles, £2 will be donated to The Eve Appeal. Your home can smell amazing whilst helping a fabulous cause.
Gifts that help our Animal friends
Radley Purse – In collaboration with Dogs Trust See full details here
You know I love dogs, and my little dog Lulu features on my blog occasionally. I sponsor a dog at Dogs Trust, (a staffie named Sky) so when I received their latest newsletter telling us about this Radley collaboration, I knew I would be featuring it in this guide. The quality of Radley goods are always pretty reliable, and their traditional signature feature is the Radley Scotty dog, so it seems like a marriage made in heaven. There are four limited edition purses available, and three of the designs feature one of the Dogs Trust rescue dogs, Scruffy the crossbreed, Jackie the Dachshund, and Lollipop the Golden Retriever. The purses cost £32 and 15% goes straight to Dogs Trust. Id quite like one of each please and thank you….
Tembo Shina bracelet Auree Jewellery – In collaboration with Tusk see Full details here
Imagine a world that has no elephants in it…… I dont want to imagine it do you?
Well sadly, this is the way we are going unless we find a way to stop the merciless poaching of our beautiful elephants. It makes me feel sick to think of how we are wiping out the elephant population. Well Auree jewellery have a collection, including this gorgeous rose gold bracelet, that raises much needed funds for Tusk, an organisation that provides rangers to protect the elephants. Auree donate 100% of the profits to the cause. This is way up there on the top of my wish list, its so beautiful.
Gifts that Support Communities
Cheeseboard – Goldfinger Factory helps people become self sufficient and learn skills See full details here
This social enterprise in London was set up to teach unemployed people new skills and become self sufficient, while up-cycling and recycling thrown out items and materials. The scheme provides amazing opportunities for people to not only earn a living, but gain back their sense of self worth. There are so many items available, and all are hand made. I love these cheese boards, and think they make a great gift.
Traidcraft Alicia Silver Necklace – Supporting Poor communities through Fair Trade See full details here
I have been lucky enough to travel fairly extensivly. When I was in Thailand, I was amazed at the skill of the silver smiths that worked their craft in little huts or on the roadside. It was approaching my parents 25th Silver wedding anniversary while I was there, so I comissioned one of these jewllers to make a little silver Tuktuk for me to take home for them. It was beautiful, full of detail and craftmanship. Such skill and passion for their work. Traidcraft works with these and other communities in the poorest parts of the world to ensure they get fairly paid for the beautiful items they make, and showcases their items to a far wider audience. This gorgeous necklace is handmade in Peru, and symbolises the past and future coming together. Its just gorgeous.
Chocolate Hampers – Divine Chocolate The only chocolate company in the world completely FairTrade Details here
Of course, there has to be a food gift in my selection, and this chocolate hamper is a good one! Provided by Divine Chocolate, they are the only company that are 100% FairTrade, aswel as being owned by cocoa farmers. I loved this as it not only gives cocoa farmers and their communities the best price and income for their work, part ownership means that they also get a share of all company profit, and a stronger voice to be heard within the industry. There is a real “story” behind this company, and I urge you to have a read. Its a fabulous initiative.
Gifts that Help Us All
Christmas Eve Box – All profits go to Cancer Research See full details here
My boys always had a Christmas Eve box, and these ones from Cancer Research are fab. Our boxes used to hold a Christmas dvd, a pair of christmas pyjamas, a small gift like a matchbox car, some reindeer food, you get the picture. If you buy your Christmas Eve box from Cancer Research, all profits go to aid the valuable research being done into this bastard disease.
Garden Wildlife Hamper – The Eden Project Fair See full details here
The Eden Project was set up in part, to source and supply ethically sourced, environmentally friendly and good for the environment products. It has a huge choice of beautiful items, that aid our planet and people in some way. I have bought often from here and have always been so pleased. I love this hamper for any keen gardeners in your life, or even those wanting to attract nature into your garden.
So, thats it. I hope I have opened your eye a little to some of the amazing, gifts with concious that are available. As I am sure you can imagine, there are thousands of fabulous things available that give something back. The aim of this post was just to perhaps help you see that there could be something perfect for a person on your christmas presant list, that helps others. We often “adopted” an animal for our kids when they were younger, and they loved getting a newsletter etc throughout the year from their animal friend. Have a look around, I am sure you will be amazed what there is out there.
Happy gift buying! If you come across or know of anything that you think I should know about, let me know! I do have my eye on the Tiffany pendant that is helping the elephants……………