Sustainable Holiday Gift Giving

With Thanksgiving only days away there is one infamous holiday where people brave the insanity of the day to shop for holiday gifts at record low prices. While Black Friday has become it’s own holiday tradition, is it really worth the insanity? It’s debatable whether the deals are worth the early morning adventure, and if those items are really necessary. While gift-giving is a wonderful tradition to uphold, there are much easier ways to get heartfelt gifts at low prices, and it doesn’t have to be Black Friday to get them.

It seems department stores and shopping malls have the greatest number of customers flocking to them. People don’t really realize when flipping through the circulars that small businesses also have Black Friday sales, and their items may be cheaper and better quality as well. There are many ways to shop for holiday gifts sustainably this year, and doing so not only helps the environment, but your local community and your nerves as well.

Holiday shopping is expensive. There are so many people who deserve gifts but the funds might just not be there this year. if you want to show someone you care, but don’t necessarily have the funds to do so, shopping at thrift stores might be the answer. The saying goes ‘what’s old is new’, and shopping at thrift stores or garage sales may help you find personal gifts, unusual and comical gifts, or really old things that friends or family might like. A lot of things that end up in these stores are barely used and still have packaging, so with the right touch this could really make someone’s holiday season. Being able to hunt for the perfect gift and not worry about the cost brings a different sentiment to holiday shopping. It feels less like a mission or a duty and more like a fun experience to find something that reminds you of that specific person.

If you’re looking to shop for unique items and help your community, shop small this holiday season. Tons of small business have great sales that are easy to miss out on because they don’t get the word out as well as a department store. Shop for quality, even if it may be a little more pricey than a department store. You’re paying for quality and helping the environment by contributing to a business that didn’t need much fuel to ship and transport their items.

People forget that the real joy of receiving a gift isn’t the gift itself but the person who gave it. Instead of splurging on material goods, try giving them the gift of a memory. By getting creative and planning an activity to do with them or getting them tickets to something, you’re giving them something they can’t put on a shelf, but instead will remember it forever. If you’ve got a computer and a pen, odds are you can come up with a pretty great experience for someone. Handmade gifts are also wonderful. The right friends and family will appreciate effort, and if you take the time to make something special for them odds are they will love it. Finding DIY projects on Pinterest can give you some great inspiration. Baking something special is also a great way to skip the expensive gift giving and give someone something they’ll enjoy.

What is most important about this season is that it is a season of GIVING. Give your time. Give your creativity. Give your warmth. Give away things you no longer want or need. The spirit of this holiday season is to give the gift of love; something you won’t find while in line for the register at 4 a.m.




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