Reduce the Environmental Impact of Gift Giving
If you or someone you love is conscious about environmental issues, then gift giving times can be less than joyful occasions. Wrapping paper, ribbons, packaging materials, and even the gift idea itself often demonstrate our wasteful tendencies when it comes to giving gifts. Being more environmentally considerate about what we give as gifts and how we present those gifts can go a long way to show our loved ones that we care about them as well as about the environment. Here are a few unique gift ideas that are, in themselves environmentally friendly, but that would also appeal to anyone who loves spending time outdoors.
Decorative Solar Lanterns
Affordable and practical, decorative solar lanterns make a beautiful addition to an outdoor dining table or sitting area. Powered by the sun’s rays during the day, most high quality solar lanterns can illuminate their surroundings with an energy-saving LED bulb for up to 8 hours after the sun goes down. No operating costs means no impact on the environment, and that is beautiful, indeed.
For small gifts such as solar lanterns, consider replacing traditional wrapping papers with cloth wrapping. Secure the cloth wrapping to the gift with a color-coordinated fabric ribbon. Whether you purchase a cloth bag, or use fabric you already have in your home, cloth wrapping is durable and can be re-used multiple times. Your friend will appreciate this additional gift.
Solar fountains for the patio or garden are other unique gift ideas for your environment-loving outdoor enthusiast. The gentle sound of running water is soothing to the mind and spirit, and it can help your friend unwind and relax at the end of hectic days. In addition, a solar fountain adds an attractive focal point to a garden or patio without requiring a nearby electrical outlet to power the water pump.
Depending on the size of the solar fountain you plan to give as a gift, you may wish to consider no wrapping whatsoever. Instead, add value to the gift by assembling it beforehand, choosing a location outdoors, and presenting it to your loved one so that it can be enjoyed right away. Because there are no electrical cords to worry about, the solar fountain can be relocated easily if desired.
Recycled Rope Hammock Swing
A hammock swing is a gift idea that is rarely considered, but it’s one that many people would love to receive. Unlike a traditional hammock, a hammock swing allows you to sit up comfortably and enjoy reading a book, having a conversation, or just taking in the surroundings. Hammock swings can be constructed from weather-resistant outdoor fabrics or woven with rope materials, but the most environmentally-friendly hammock swing is one whose ropes are made from 100% recycled polyester fibers. These ropes are extremely durable and resistant to harsh weather, but they are also soft to the touch like cotton.
While you may not want to install a hammock swing gift before presenting it to your loved one, you can add value to the gift by installing it yourself once a location is chosen, or you can hire an installer to do the work. No wrapping is necessary for a hammock swing, but tying a decorative fabric bow around the gift before you present it can provide a festive touch.
Gift giving doesn’t have to continue to be as wasteful as it has always been. Creative and re-usable wrappings, or no wrappings, and gift choices that are sustainable as well as attractive and useful are some of the simple ways we can reduce our impact on the environment. By paying a little more attention to what we give and how we give it, we can make a big difference. Environmentally considerate gifts add value and joy to the giving, and to the receiving.