After taking a month off of blogging, I’m back with a new gift guide! This one features a bunch of Canadian environmentally-friendly and zero-waste businesses that I’m in love with.
From ethically-sourced fashion and jewellery to handmade cloth pads, beeswax wraps and greeting cards, these gifts are perfect for anyone trying to go green! Couture Therapy, Garden of Eden Reusables, Earthology, The Groggy Owl and Thoughtfully Handmade, are all doing their best to protect our planet and have a sustainable business. If you need a gift, you need to check out this gift guide!
To read, just keep on scrolling!
1. Food Wraps
What’s the first thing people get on their zero-waste journey? Food wraps! Food wraps are a replacement for plastic wrap. If you want to help someone start becoming environmentally friendly and reducing single-use plastic consumption, Earthology food wraps by Sarah S. and Robin are perfect!
Their beeswax wraps are made from local and unprocessed beeswax from an independent farm that is filtered in-house. It’s crucial to Sarah S. and Robin that they partner with ethical and sustainable beekeepers who only harvest the excess wax to allow the bees to thrive! Similarly, their vegan wraps are made with eco-friendly plant-based waxes like organic jojoba oil and coniferous tree resin.
All of their wraps are made with 100% GOTS certified organic cotton. Earthology uses natural materials because they felt like it was their only option to ensure their business is as ethical and sustainable as possible. Each of their wrap sets come with one small, one medium and one large wrap, so it’s perfect in any starter kit!
2. Cloth Pads
If you’re a girl, then you know how horrible that time of the month can be. Menstrual products are essential for us, so it seems like you have no choice but to get your daughter single-use pads and tampons like you use.
Fortunately, shops like Garden of Eden Reusables by Maureen have a solution: cloth pads! Not only are they more comfortable than single-use ones, but they’re also prettier too! While it is more expensive to buy then single-use products, you can use them for much longer. Before I switched, I was purchasing a new pack every other month. Now, I haven’t bought any since July 2019! Cloth pads also don’t irritate your skin as single-use ones do, and it helps decrease your environmental footprint.
Maureen has a wide range of reusable cloth products other than pads like period underwear, reusable nursing pads and toddler training pants. Her pads also come in a variety of different sizes and are made from soft, absorbent and often organic materials. Each pad has an outer layer made from 100% cotton flannel, a PUL waterproof barrier, multi-layered absorbent organic cotton and non-rusting snap closure.
Also, every pad is unique because Maureen loves shopping for fabric, which means the pattern shown in the photos may not be available at the time of ordering. Regardless, getting a starter set for your daughter or for yourself is a perfect gift. To do so, head to Garden of Eden Reusable’s website! Don’t forget to visit Maureen on her Instagram page too!
3. Sustainable Fashion
If you or someone you know is on a zero-waste journey, then you know how horrible fast fashion is for the environment. Enter Couture Therapy by Sarah (I promise you this is a different Sarah)!
Couture Therapy focuses on quality over quantity, which means they are committed to silhouettes, fabric and construction that lasts. Sarah believes that fashion shouldn’t be fast nor disposable. So, she always chooses the eco-friendly option by using certified organic and local woven cotton, biodegradable Tencel and sustainably produced knitwear in her designs.
Each piece is developed, sampled and produced in small quantities in Vancouver. What I love about Couture Therapy is their dedication to Canadian-made production standards. From the beginning, they’ve supported the local economy and family-run businesses by sourcing their materials from Canadian garment manufacturing businesses. Since Sarah sells her collection directly to customers online and in pop-up stores, it prevents excessive mark-ups of her designs so she can offer affordable pricing.
Best of all, Couture Therapy has a size chart on their website, and every item has a size fit and model description, so you don’t need to guess. Help someone be more environmentally friendly by gifting them an item from Couture Therapy! Sarah’s designs are beautiful and classic, so it will never go out of style. Browse Couture Therapy’s website to start or check out their Instagram page!
4. Sustainable Jewellery
Jewellery is always a go-to gift. Fortunately, we have makers like self-taught artist and jewellery maker Sarah D. and her mom Marife from The Groggy Owl.
They make fantastic jewellery that’s made from ethically-sourced, recycled and local materials and packaged with environmentally-friendly packaging. Mass-production doesn’t exist at The Groggy Owl because all of their pieces are custom designed. Each accessory is designed and handcrafted in Canada using many different materials and techniques. For more information on that, you can check out their blog!
Their “Zero Waste Collection” has pieces all made from plastic waste, recycled materials and reclaimed fabrics that they transform into wearable art. For example, their copper and gemstone rings are crafted with ethically-sourced gemstones and recycled copper. Sarah D. actually recycles the copper herself in her home studio through an electrochemical deposition process. How cool! The Groggy Owl’s Zero Waste Earrings are made from reclaimed findings, recycled metal and plastic waste that Sarah D. transforms using heat and colour.
To top it all off, The Groggy Owl offers free domestic and international shipping on orders over $100 CND, so you definitely need to visit their website today to place your order! You can also visit their Instagram page for behind the scenes content!
5. Handmade Cards & Bookmarks
To finish off your gift, don’t forget to include a thoughtfully handmade card or bookmark from Thoughtfully Handmade by me, Yandy! Handmade by me, intended for you to give, all of my cards are meant to spread joy to whoever receives it. I started Thoughtfully Handmade with a mission to help others spread positivity. Giving a handmade card is a small gesture that can bring a lot of happiness to people’s lives. I strive to provide unique, personalized greeting cards and bookmarks that are adjustable, affordable and adorable.
I chose to start my own business because I was (and still am) sick and tired of the impersonal, mass-produced cards in the market today. Whenever I’ve received one of those cards, I’ve felt like no effort was put in by the giver. Even if they took an hour to choose the perfect one, it still felt like they left it to the last minute. What’s worse is that the recipient will often throw those away after receiving it because they place no value on it!
When you give a handmade card, the hours of hard work that I put into every single one shows. They are less likely to throw it away after receiving it because a handmade card will always have more sentimental value than a mass-produced one! My cards are unique since no two are identical, and I only produce 6-8 cards for each design. Once they’re gone, they’re gone!
By purchasing something from me, you’re also donating ten cents to Toronto Environmental Alliance. They are a non-profit organization that strives to build a greener Toronto! Even if you don’t end up purchasing a gift from one of the fabulous stores featured today, a card can be a gift in itself. To purchase one, you can click on a photo with a design you like or visit the “Shop” page on my website! Don’t forget to subscribe to my newsletter, Yandy’s Chronicles for fun behind the scenes content and to visit me on Instagram if you want to connect!
I hope you enjoyed reading about these great businesses and what they’re doing to help lower our environmental footprint! The main thing all of us agree on though is to only buy something new if you absolutely need to. Otherwise, reuse and reduce first!