Have Yourself a Rubbish Little Christmas!

How about a little recycled vinyl in your Christmas stocking?
How about a little recycled vinyl in your Christmas stocking?

Oh boy.

I’ve relented.

It’s December and I’ve finally come around to the idea of thinking about Christmas.

It’s not that I don’t like it; on the contrary, Christmas time is great. I just cannot stomach all the hype and perpetual consumer pressure that seems to start bearing down on us from about mid-October.

Anyway, over the weekend I spent a little time hopping around in cyberspace seeking out a few inexpensive, minimal-rubbish flavoured things to add to Santa’s list and I thought I’d share my findings with you, my rubbish-loving chums!


The Gift: Looking for something retro for the music lovers in your life?  Look at these funky recycled vinyl albums and 45 singles hand-sculpted into bowls or made into drinks coasters.  Each one is unique.  It’d be great for throwing your keys and change into or use the LPs for your hand-made pot pourri creations, chocolates or why not plant a plant in it, that would be unusual.

Where to find it: Ebay seller SunflowerDream2002 (Items currently for sale)

How Much: Range from £2.99 – £7.99


The Gift: Literary gifts are always well received and online editions of favourite reads are even better and often cheaper too.  They also have super-quick search options to find info on top topics, they have pages that will never wear out and your recipient will have zero rubbish!  Have a look at the free trial issues of the digital subscriptions for The Ecologist, Permaculture Magazine, Resurgence or The Green Parent.

Where to find it: Exact Editions for these four titles and many others. There is even a selection of Sawday’s books.

How Much: From £10 for a 12-month subscription.


The Gift: We’ll always need bags, boxes and containers and these ones really caught my eye.  They are made by a co-operative in the Philippines who use old juice containers and turn them into recycled lunchboxes, shoulder bags and purses.

Where to find it: The Natural History Museum’s in store and online shop.

How Much: Starting from £8.00

The Gift: This makes for a such a lovely gift, its ideal for your green fingered chums and it’ll last forever.  It’s a wooden eco paper seedling potter, which needs to be seen to be understood!  Just think of all the delicious food and lovely plants that will come from your sustainable Christmas gift.

Where to find it: At the Green Eyed Frog online shop.

How Much: £9.85


The Gift: Find a local charity near you and adopt an animal for somebody.  Take a look at this one for the Farm Animal Rescue organisation. You often get a lovely adoption pack and sometimes your name on a plaque at the centre and you’ll be doing something that fits your pocket and really will make a great difference too.

Where to find it: Here’s a selection of UK animal adoption schemes

How Much: Various, from a few pounds per month.


I hope these gift ideas have sparked your interest!

Other Thoughts

If you’re looking for a recycled little something, be sure to hop onto the appropriately named Recycled Products Guide and have a good browse through.  The Recycled Products Guide (RPG) is owned and administered by WRAP (the Waste and Resources Action Programme).

The aim of the guide is to provide a national, comprehensive database of products made from recycled materials.  At the time of writing, there are over 450 companies listed, so it should make ethical Christmas shopping a little bit easier.

Alternatively, you might like to consider giving a virtual gift like an experience or a short course perhaps.  There are lots of local cooking and rural craft courses that would make for a fantastic gift. Check out your local papers and directories to see what’s available where you or your recipients live.

And finally, I believe the most amazing present anyone can give, is time.  Consider making a Cheque Book of Promises to enclose with your hand-made card.  Ideas for cheques include time for babysitting, time for pampering (maybe giving a massage or facial), time for therapy (giving some reflexology or reiki if you are qualified), time for a garden clear up (self-explanatory!), time for a makeover (take your chum out on a charity shopping spree), time for dinner (go to a friends house and play chef and washerupper for the evening) etc etc etc…

Finishing Tips

To wrap your presents, ditch that fancy expensive wrap and use potato hand-printed brown paper tied up with string or raffia and use a hand shredder to convert knackered old Christmas decorations into jazzy slithers of recyclable packing/padding material.

Rubbishly yours,


10 thoughts on “Have Yourself a Rubbish Little Christmas!”

  1. LOL – I’m playing blog snap…would you have guessed it! I’ve mentioned the Recycled Products Guide in my blog post as well. I’d say great minds think alike but mine’s feeling like a rotten pumpkin after being woken up early by my 4 year old LOL. Love the Vinyl bowl. It’s amazing what you can do with an old LP 😀 x

    P.S. Is it still snowing?

  2. Great minds do think alike missus!

    Sorry to hear little legs isn’t well – hope he’s back on his pins soon.

    The snow has gone, been replaced by ICCCCCEEEE baby….blimey, my typin’ digits are going on economy speed…


  3. Hi again,

    I have a digital subscription to the Scrapbook magazine! I love it to bits and love the fact that I have no pile of crunched up magazines after I’ve read them.

    I’m buying a couple of Green Parent magazine subscriptions for my sister and best friend too. f Its a great present idea.


  4. Hi Kelly – it seems there are lots of people searching for Christmas gifts that ARE eco-friendly, the new stuff coming onto the market is testimony to that, but things like the digital subscriptions are simply brilliant!

    I like the fact that you can give them a try first with a trial copy too.

    Other readers – if you want to try it out, go to http://www.ExactEditions.com and have a peek for yourself.

    TS x

  5. Hi Tracey,
    I have put my foot down this year and decided no xmas cards! Now how bold is that? I have told friends and family that I am not sending ’em out and don’t want ’em sent to me and everyone seems ok (to my face) with that! I did have a panic on monday and ordered a load of books on the net for friends and family and now feel like I’ve ticked the prezzies box now. Me and my dh have decided we are not buying each other ‘stuff’ this year but writing an IOU to ourselves that if there is something that we decide we really want over the course of the year then we can treat ourselves. The other bold move is getting the kids 2 books each and a cd each and that is it. They are 9 and 5 and they seem to want nothing at the mo and so….. however, we are spending xmas with family and ‘doing presents’ at my sister’s house where her 3 kids have a telly each and games consols and basically whatever they ask for or don’t.. so could prove interesting….

    On another note I treated myself recently to a copy of your book and I am currently reading it and loving it. It was all Mrs Green’s fault if my dh asks, ok!!??

  6. Dear Indiebird,

    A wonderfully liberating move my friend!

    The kindness of a soul is not measured by how many presents you hand out or how many cards you send.

    It’s found in the time and effort people put into sharing their time, love and energy with others and also on how lovely they are to be with.

    If you have less stress and angst, you’ll be a beacon of success and no doubt inspore others.

    Wear your downshifted hat with pride my friend, don’t apologise for not sending them out! This is your new way and that’s that! LOLOL….

    And on that note missus, have an absolutely delightful Christmas with your loved ones and I hope you enjoy the book!



  7. Aw thanks for those lovely words Tracey,
    I am feeling liberated. Liberated from the guilt of buying a box of ‘charity’ cards where something like 10p goes to charity out of the £3.00 you’ve spent and liberated from that feeling of impending doom, where you nip to the post office sometime in December, wonder why it is so, so busy, and then read the poster which tells you that the last posting date for 2nd class is tommorow, europe was about a week ago and your brother and sister in law in the US might receive theirs by mid-Jan if you are very lucky. I’m glad I’ve voiced it now and it seems that we have a lot of odd expectations… as we do with a lot of stuff, like wanting our bathrooms to be ‘hygenically clean’ with a concoction of mad stuff that is slowly poisoning us. So here’s to a Green(er) xmas and looking forward to a New Year full of good expectations and intentions!xxxx

  8. Hi Indiebird,

    You are really on a roll! This new found liberation is tremendous and it certainly does knock onto other areas of our lives.

    It’s ‘living up to expectations’ that has got many of us into our current trappings if you ask me and as for the comment about cleanliness in the house – lolololol – I’m right with you missus!!!

    Which reminds me, make one of my old pieces your next stop.

    Do read the one about your ‘Toxic Moment’….I have a feeling yours might be on its way…..lolol…

    Enjoy your new feelings and pass the sentiment on and positively encourage it in others!


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