If you’re like us, and realised that Christmas is NEXT WEEK, it’s definitely starting to feel a little overwhelming! But, fear not, the Sustainability Office has put together this guide to help you have a beautiful, ethical Christmas, with thoughtful gift ideas and tips for enjoying the holidays mindfully.
Christmas is a time of giving. But it’s also a time to use your buying power to support both the people that are important to you and the projects you care about.
We want to challenge you this Christmas, to think critically about what you are really buying for your friends and family. Who actually made this? Where has it come from? What is it made of? What is life like for the person who made this?
Let’s make Christmas more about just giving gifts and spending for the sake of it. Let’s make considered, conscious decisions, and give gifts to our loved ones that they will not only treasure, but are also fair trade, ethical, sustainable, and beautiful.
We’ve attached a few resources to this blog, to help you along the way. Feel free to share this blog with your friends and family, to help them too! We know it’s last minute, but often the best ideas are, right? However you decide to use this guide, we hope it helps you on your journey towards thoughtful living.
Some of my favourite guides and resources to help along the way:
- Nozomi Store (side note – my favourite online ethical shop… ever…) and Good Products Cool People (oops, my other fave) have teamed up to bring you the best Ethical Christmas Guide that I have seen yet. Packed with NZ labels that are all ethical, sustainable, and beautiful, this guide is the absolute go-to for gift ideas, and just general inspiration! Check it out below (go full screen).
2. Good On You – An awesome online resource including a blog, and App (free for IOS and Android – we recommend downloading this for sure!) that allows you to research brands and shop to your values. Check it out before you do any last minute Christmas shopping, you’ll be surprised at what you discover!
Back in 2013 we started talking to people who wanted to buy ‘better’ but didn’t know how. They told us it was too hard to find information about how a brand performed on the issues they care about. So we began building tools to bring this information together in one place in ways that people could easily use – Good On You 2017
Check out the Good On You blog for interesting articles on your favourite brands here.
Here’s some goodies for this time of year: Top ethical gifts for men, and simple ways to give back this holiday season!
And…get the app here! Awesome for not only your Christmas shopping, but also as an every day resource.
And of course, the Ethical Fashion Guide and Report for 2017, from Baptist World Aid and Tearfund. Look no further for updated, detailed information on which companies are doing more to protect their workers. Use it to help you make everyday, ethical purchasing decisions!
Vote with your wallet and encourage more companies to end exploitation in their supply chains.
Ok, so you know how to shop… here’s a few of our favourite spots around Christchurch (and further afield) that stock beautiful, fair trade, ethical products!
Some hot spots for ethical buying in Christchurch (and around New Zealand):
Trade Aid: The best spot for buying Fair Trade, ethical Christmas gifts! Find them in Christchurch at 96 Oxford Terrace (The Container Mall) or have a look at their online shop here. Grocery, homewares, jewellery, Christmas decorations…Trade Aid have it all.
The Paper Rain Project: Another amazing store (with free shipping!) based in Picton. I love this shop because it stocks the perfect amount of fair trade, ethical products, alongside products from local designers (check out the wine barrel skate boards!). See them online here.
The Addington Store: An absolute must visit. A Christchurch institution! Found inside Addington Coffee Co-op (home of Jailbreaker coffee), at 297 Lincoln Road, the Addington Store is a treasure trove ethical products: Trade Aid crafts, jewels, and homewares, the best selection of Scorpio Books imaginable, Freeset T shirts, hoodies and bags, The Loyal Workshop leather products, and just about anything else you can imagine! No online store, but check out their Facebook page here.
Liminal Apparel: The largest stockist for Freeset t shirts, hoodies, long sleeve tees, scarves and bags. Fair trade, organic cotton, and super soft.. you can’t look past these classic tees. Get at them online here.
The Loyal Gift Store: A massive online store that will meet all your Fair Trade, ethical needs… whether it is gifts, or for yourself!
Every time you spend money, you’re casting a vote for the kind of world you want. – Anna Lappé, activist and writer.
Last but not least: Please don’t forget – the best gifts are ones that come from the heart, and these can be homemade, repurposed, pre-loved, or locally made. This guide is designed to provide a bit of inspiration for where to find ethical gifts this Christmas, but don’t let that stop you from letting your imagination run wild!
At the end of the day, Christmas is really about spending time with the people you care about. Giving gifts is only a tiny part of all the holiday madness- and remember, you can ‘give’ in other ways. Giving your time, giving a hug, giving someone a shoulder to lean on, making a cake, giving a plant or tree, sharing food with those you care about, and giving people a reason to smile – those are all gifts too!
Have a wonderful Christmas, however you are celebrating it. We’ll see you all back in January for another exciting year at the Sustainability Office… boy do we have some treats in store for you!
Safe and happy holidays from all of us.
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