Green Holiday Gift Ideas Resources for Eco-Awareness and Action


Chargers for all our electronic devices fill up spare plugs and waste electricity, not to mention the inconvenience of remembering your various chargers whenever you leave the house for extended periods. The FreeLoader Pro ($79.99) solves this problem and ensures your electronic devices are getting their charge from a renewable source: the sun. The Pro has a built-in Li-ion rechargeable battery and can charge almost all camera and camcorder batteries as well as iPods, iPhones, Blackberrys, many cells phones, portable DVD players, MP4 players and more. —Stephen Dworkin


Mango Tree Fitted Bangles ($16-$22) are made from the bark of already cut organic mango trees, then hand-carved and painted for a smooth, gleaming finish. You can custom-design your own bangles at their online shop: slim (thin and round), samba (angled) or bold (thick and round). You then get your pick of 50 different colors and patterns that range from funky “Vivid Lava” to classic “Deep Blue” as well as your choice of four different sizes (small, medium, large and XL). Their “Mix & Match” feature even lets you to choose from four different skin tones to get a realistic view of how each bangle will look on your arm. A portion of all proceeds goes to a different set of charities each month and each bangle comes with a cinched pouch inscribed with Mango Tree’s logo for pretty gifting this holiday season. —Lindsey Blomberg


Whether giving to a likeminded lady or treating yourself, there’s always room for an extra bag in one’s life, and two from Unique Vintage—a store specializing in retro dresses, shoes, swimwear and more—feature looks you can love in materials that will meet your green standards. Natural Hemp Bags ($18/each) go over the shoulder and look perfect for casual toting with slogans supporting pet adoption and clean oceans. And the Recycled Keyboard Clutch ($35) is a conversation waiting to happen, styled from denim and more than 200 recycled keyboard keys. —Brita Belli


Paloma Pottery’s Recycled Glass Infused Ornaments ($5.50-$9.50/each) feature dazzling glass stars, hearts, rounds and trees, all handcrafted by Paloma Pottery’s owner and artist Nicole Whitney from crackled recycled glass fragments. There are eight gemstone-inspired colors, like green-infused Sunset Mixed Glass and rich purple Amethyst Crystal. Many of the non-glass materials originate from items that would otherwise have been thrown away, like the plastic tops of deodorant containers. “I am frugal, reuse as much as possible and seldom waste, allowing me to keep my prices low without sacrificing quality,” Whitney says in an online statement. —L.B.


San Francisco Herb Company’s online warehouse of gourmet spices, herbs, teas and more can liven up your holiday cooking—and help you entertain on a budget. Large one-pound bags of cinnamon, nutmeg powder, pumpkin pie spice blend, walnut pieces and peppermint tea bags are all sold for under $10. Pints of vanilla, maple, lemon and almond extract are all under $11. And San Francisco Herb Company is as light on the environment as it is on your wallet—much of what they offer is grown in the wild or cultivated without the use of commercial pesticides and
fertilizers. —L.B.


For a simple way to make a statement, pair a solid dress, button-down shirt or anything V-necked with the Silk Strand Tie Necklace from Gaiam ($23.90/purple; $28/platinum) this season. Silk-covered beads in platinum or purple tied with a thick ribbon give you a dramatic chunky necklace look without the weight. The necklaces are handmade by fair trade artisans in Vietnam. —B.B.