A little while ago, Claire the Ethical Fashion Project Manager from Tearfund and I, pulled together the ultimate sustainable fashion summer list, as well as one for Christmas. Here is the combined list, with some great summer items from local Kiwi ethical brands, as well as ideas rather than brands for a Christmas focused less on consumption and more on sharing and caring.
It’s not too late for online orders either!!
- Give a Gift for Life. I especially love this, Donating a life-changing gift on someone else’s behalf with Tearfund. You get a card to give them, letting them know the difference they’ve made in the life of someone in need. You can give so many different things including a goat, drinking water, training or a veggie patch. Surely that’s a lot better than another pair of socks in the drawer. Nothing could be more in the spirit of Christmas than a gift that actually gives.
- But if you do want to give them something they can wear immediately, how about a little white t-shirt from a Little Yellow Bird. Sturdy, soft and long organic cotton shirts are from $35 or $45. It’s not only white tees but stripes and colours too.
- Or a lovely summer dress from ReCreate. Also organic cotton, but not only that, Debs and Erica from ReCreate set up a sewing centre in Cambodia providing employment and training to locals many of whom were living in slums before. Their clothes really encapsulate that laid back Kiwi feel. By the way they do meanswear too!
4. But you know, it’s not only about easily wrapped gifts. Gift your skills. There are endless possibilities in this category—resole your spouse’s favourite shoes, craft lovely new covers for your mum’s sofa cushions, weed your neighbour’s garden, bake cupcakes for your niece, or baby sit on New Year’s eve for your friend. You can even design the gift voucher on www.canva.com.
5. Buy pre-loved. Hunting for that perfect gift, whether it’s a funky retro salad bowl, or a designer label jacket, also shows you really care enough to take the time. The Walk in Wardrobe in Queenstown central is my favourite.
6. Maybe you’ve had no luck going pre-loved, then check out WE-AR for beautiful, light, yoga-inspired garments.
7. The beeswax food wrap. This one might seem a bit left field, but I can’t overstate the life-changing wonder of beeswax food wraps. No more cling film (which I personally hate because of how much of it ends up in landfill). These reusable waxy wraps keep everything tightly closed, and colourfully wrapped.
8. Make a book for memories. Nowadays, there are lots of companies that allow you to curate your own photo book and publish it hard copy. Kroma books are the local version of Chatbooks, but it looks like Milk Photo Books and Artifact Uprising use recycled, acid-free paper making them a more sustainable option.
9. Share or buy an experience. Organise an experience for your loved one—a ziptrek, a dinner out or a movie voucher.
10. Allbirds are the gift that they’ll never stop wearing. Just ask my me!! These are merino-made runners that tick a lot of boxes, including comfort (truly), style, ethics and sustainable values.
11. This one is for the kids. The bestest most comfortablest tee for 4-12 year olds from OKI For All. My personal favourite, and one that I am begging Kerith the founder and designer to make adult versions of, is the Akiko Kawakami illustrated story of OKI tee featured above.
With those ideas, you are set and ready to go.