Last Minute Green Gift Ideas

It’s the festival of the last minute for all holiday gift-giving, and we here at 5 Minutes For Going Green have definitely been there. This year we want to help you battle those gift giving stresses of Christmases past, and so we’ve put together a last minute Green Gift Guide to help you check each name of your list just in time to relax and enjoy the upcoming festivities.

1. Night Owl Paper Goods has a plethora of unique and 100% recycled gift ideas, from tote bags to cards and calendars comprised of sustainably harvested Birch wood:

2. Still need something for the avid coffee drinker on your list? Try these hand-made coffee sleeves from CupKozy on Etsy:

A note about the coffee sleeves from the seller:

Show your greenness with this reusable alternative to those ugly cardboard coffee sleeves. All are made with wool blended felt, chosen for its superior insulating properties, and will fit most 12, 16 and 20 oz. disposable coffee cups

The CupKozy ROLLS-UP and attaches to your key ring, book bag, etc. Once it’s rolled up it’s about the size of a lip balm tube. It’s compact and ready to use whenever that caffeine craving strikes and the metal hook clips on and off with ease.

They come in a variety of colors and fabrics and are guaranteed to fit most sizes of coffee cups.

3. With cold snaps and snow storms hitting the Pacific Northwest, the Midwest and the Northeast this time of year, give the gift of warm fingers with these recycled sweater mittens from MJ’s Mittens:

All my mittens are women’s one size fits all. Recycled sweaters that have already seen their day in the spotlight. Fleece lined for comfort and warmth. Comes with washing directions – they can go right in your machine and are pre-shrunk!

4. For the tech-savvy man on your list try these handmade iSockits, created primarily with recycled vintage fabric, like this one:

From the seller:

This iSockit cover is made to fit the iPod classic, iPod touch, iPhone, and fits the new 3G iPhone. Made of vintage knit polyester fabric with diamond pattern. I designed these to protect portable electronics from getting scratched and scuffed. I sew each one myself, using a variety of vintage fabrics that I have collected over the years.

5. Sure to impress even the best of all recycle mavens on your list, these Metro Map Bowls are fashioned from paper pulp made from recycled waste paper (in the specific bowls below, from case-recycled paper grocery bags, with a copy of a metro map from New York lining the inside):

Per the creator, the bowl is 4.25 inches in diameter and stands 2 inches tall. The handmade paper has been sealed with acrylic varnish so it is sturdy but still lightweight.

These bowls are a beautiful, “green,” durable addition to your home decor. They look fabulous holding wrapped candies, potpourri or decorative stones, and they can easily be wiped clean with a slightly damp cloth. However, the bowls are not watertight and are not recommended for food use.

They are, however, quite durable and will not break if (and when) dropped.

6. For the kiddos on your list, try these handmade building block sets, recently listed for 50% off their original price:

Hand crafted wooden Baby Toys Made from 100% Non-Toxic Paints, glue and sealers. This design is made to look like antique toys. We are going back to the basics with these classic toys to encourage imagination to build and stack. These blocks come as a set. No two are alike I make every toy with a different design.

7. For something a bit more whimsical, try this Wilderness Cotton Apple Cozy from Crazy Jane Knits:

8. In need of some quick and recycled holiday gift tags? Look no further than a paint chip sample, or two. Thanks to Michelle, I stumbled on this great gift tag idea from featured on A Spoonful of Sugar and I happen to think it’s pretty ingenious.

Instructions, via A Spoonful of Sugar:

These would make a fun kids craft. All you need is some paint cards, a Christmas punch, a hole punch, and some ribbon. After punching the tree, I cut the top of the tag into a 45 degree angle, and used a corner punch to round the tip. I then punched a hole and threaded some ribbon, and now have a whole batch of tags ready for Christmas.

I myself have baskets filled with more paint samples than I could ever use, and this is a creative and very easy way to make a memorable gift tag for your last minute gifts.

What’s even better is that this idea, and this simple craft, can be re-purposed to for birthday gifts, engagement or wedding gifts, or even for random gifts you want to attach a recycled card to. Try using an eclectic stamp or unique hole punch and you’re sure to have a tag idea for everyone on your list this year.

Have your own last minute green gift giving ideas? Feel free to share them in the comments!

An original 5 Minutes for Going Green post. Read more about all things Kerri Anne, including her renewed commitment to green living and her affinity for talking in movie quotes at

3 Responses to Last Minute Green Gift Ideas
  1. Enstrom's Online Community Team
    December 23, 2008 | 4:46 pm

    I really like the handmade coffee sleeves! We just posted some last minute kosher gift ideas you might want to check out.

  2. Michelle at Scribbit
    December 23, 2008 | 9:26 pm

    Oh I love that apple cozy! How cute it is.

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