I know it’s late to post about Christmas gifts. There’s practically no time left to have something shipped before Christmas Day!
But, if I’m being honest, I’m simply far less motivated to shop these days. My life is busy, my wardrobe is fairly restricted by the nature of my work, and I really love the things I already have.
It has taken me more than a decade to get to a place where I’m not constantly caught up in the whims of trends and the implicit consumption demands of being an “influencer.” I’ve said it before, but sponsorship and #collab culture make it really easy to justify overconsumption, and even shopping addiction.
The ethical fashion influencer space has changed dramatically over the last few years. Far fewer brands are willing to work directly with influencers. And if they are, they’re much more likely to choose a conventional Instagram influencer over a blog-only collab.
At first, I was frustrated by this. Of course I was. It felt like brands were willing to “reward” people who weren’t actually interested in the long work of sustainability. But at the end of the day, changing influence has helped me realize that I need to be committed to honesty in my own work.
And honesty means making a concerted effort to live my advertised values. Primarily, this has meant limiting my total consumption and purchasing as many things as possible secondhand.
Christmas gifts are one of the few times that I specifically want new items. That’s mostly because I’ll ask for gifts that I want, but wouldn’t usually buy for myself. This year’s list is focused on joy. What will I use and enjoy for a long time? What elements of fun or comfort are missing in my life? What do I already love that I will continue to love?
Here are my 5 Sustainable(ish) Christmas Gift Ideas
This post contains affiliate links and I may be compensated if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.
1 | The Kit Sweatshirt
I have long admired designer Daniel Vosovic’s colorful brand The Kit. Daniel and his team make each item to order. They digitally print their beautiful designs on the same white fabric. The end result is a less wasteful, more sustainable garment.
2 | Birkenstock Boston Clogs
I had a pair of knock-off Boston clogs in the 9th grade. The surest sign that I’m getting old is all the Gen-Zs thinking they’re cool when they dress like teen me. Unfortunately, Boston clogs are sold out everywhere.
3 | Rollerblades
I got this pair of Impala rollerblades at a good price on Cyber Monday. I’ve already taken them out for a spin, my first time rollerblading in something like 15 years. It was exhilarating! When purchasing, I focused on good quality so that they’ll last.
4 | Favorite Pants
At some point in 2021, I tried on a pair of pants at Target and realized they accommodate my waist-to-hip ratio better than anything outside of Madewell Curvy denim. I wear a black version of these frequently, so I want to buy a couple more colors for work.
5 | Cookware
Full disclosure: Caraway is sending me a few products to review. I have been wanting to find a healthy alternative to nonstick teflon for a few years and the color of this set is amazing.
P.S. Last year’s Holiday Shopping Guide is full of dead product links, but I still stand by all the represented brands.
Leah Wise is the founder of StyleWise Blog. She has been writing, speaking, and consulting on sustainable fashion, the fair trade and secondhand supply chain, and digital marketing for over ten years. An Episcopal priest, Leah holds a B.A. in Religion from Florida State University and an M.Div. from Yale Divinity School. When not working, you can find her looking for treasures at the thrift store.