Gifts made in Britain by hand & with love
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This year, more than ever, all the unsustainable Christmas ‘stuff’ on sale is totally out of step with how I’m feeling. Don’t get me wrong, I love this time of year and really enjoy finding gifts to bring festive joy to loved ones. But that can’t come at a high cost for our ailing environment. Buying close to home from individual makers struggling to keep their businesses afloat right now is what I’m focussing on. I’ve been squirrelling away ideas for sustainable gifts, made in Britain by a few of my favourite UK makers, for a while now, so I thought I’d share some of them with you. (This post is focussing on my favourite finds on Etsy – other ideas and favourite finds will follow soon…) In the meantime, I hope that I help you to find something special that will be loved for years to come.
Find handmade gifts made in Britain
The Editor’s pick pages on Etsy are always worth a browse – check out the Gifts for her editor’s pick.
To buy close to home, click the ‘all filters’ button top left and select the location. To browse gifts made in Britain, I select ‘items from the United Kingdom’ and from there, I will browse individual product pages that catch my eye to find out more. Not the speediest of processes, I’ll grant you, which is another reason why I thought it might save you some time if I shared what I have found..
Charlotte makes a simply beautiful collection of textile accessories from her country Cotswolds studio including the smartest embroidered Christmas tree crown topper in town.
These linen hand warmers make the ideal gift for dog walkers or anyone who feels the cold. Filled with UK-grown dried wheat, you heat them for a minute in the microwave and pop them in your pocket for portable cosiness. Can you think of a better way to make someone feel loved? The pattern is a pretty Fairisle design from Charlotte’s own original illustrations and strikes just the right festive note. Love!
Sticking with the Fairisle feel for a moment, how gorgeous are these Shetland fingerless gloves? They’re hand made in Scotland and come in 5 utterly gorgeous colour combinations. My own favourite is this coral and pale blue but there’s also purple/lilac, oatmeal/blue, sage/buttermilk and grey/coral. If you’d like a pair, order soon as they sell out fast.
Handmade in Hythe by Mecki at the potter’s wheel with decoration hand drawn by Zanna, this mug really caught my eye as being something truly unique. As someone who is forever finding cups of tea gone cold, I’m thinking the smaller surface area might mean keep the tea warmer for longer.
This lively and joyful fragrance is inspired by the beloved Elizabeth Bennet character from Austen’s classic novel Pride & Prejudice and has fresh notes of lemon and mandarin softened with the warmth of basil, oakmoss and aniseed. Hand made in the UK from 100% natural and botanical ingredients it’s also packaged so, so beautifully. Each glass bottle is stored inside a beautiful box decorated with illustration and a classic red wax seal.
If you’re not sure which fragrance to go for, there’s also a beautifully boxed Women’s Fragrance Sampler which contains Elizabeth Bennet, Jane Eyre, Anne of Avonlea and Alice.
I love the design of this apron – and that it’s hand made using 18 remnants of denim, striped ticking and bright red fabrics. This is an apron is truly one of a kind. Robust and stylish in equal measure, it’s perfect for anyone of a creative or crafty persuasion. Extra long straps mean you can tie at the back or front and there’s a decent sized patch pocket.
London-based founder of In The Making, Lisa Bennett, hand makes her beautiful collection using natural fabrics with minimal waste. Her pottery aprons are ideal for wearing whilst sitting at the wheel or work bench and designed with potters, painters and artisan makers in mind.
Hand poured in Manchester using 100% natural ingredients and pure essential oils and clean burning soy wax, these beautiful candles are available in a range of different therapeutic options:
Tranquility (cedarwood, lemon and lavender).
Focus (cedarwood, lemon and peppermint).
Motivation (sweet orange, grapefruit and lemon).
Sensuality (ylang ylang, lavender and bergamot).
Happiness (tangerine, basil and lemon)
Meditation (sweet orange, lemongrass and lavender) and Immunity (peppermint, lemon and eucalyptus).
Perfect little extra gift designed and made in the UK, especially if you also happen to be wrapping up a candle for someone. The matches themselves are a joy to use because they are extra long ,but what really sets these boxes apart are the decorative designs.
Founder of Superfly Soap, Lisa McWatt is based in Kincardine, Scotland and makes award-winning eco-conscious affordable skincare. Hand made with all-natural ingredients and perfumed deliciously with essential oils of orange, cinnamon and clove, this shampoo bar has to be the most fragrantly festive around. Add this reusable aluminium soap tin to your order and you have the perfect sustainable Christmassy stocking filler.
A great sustainable stocking filler handmade in the UK from bamboo towelling and soft brushed cotton (11 pretty designs to choose from).
Pressed flowers in glass by Bluebells Blossom
Handmade in Devon by Lauren Deprieele, these beautiful glass frames are filled with pressed flowers from her garden. Choose from forget me nots (below), birth month flowers, simply beautiful white pressed gypsophila (in square frame or circular frame) and more.
This handmade natural Chocolate Orange soap makes a great stocking filler. It’s rich and smooth with cocoa powder and aromatic with sweet orange essential oil. As with all Clovelly Soap Company soaps, it’s handmade in Devon and arrives beautifully wrapped in decorative paper.
I struggled to pick out just one Vegan Bunny Christmas candles to share with you, so I thought I’d go for the set of 3. Handmade in Oxfordshire, all Vegan Bunny candles are 100% natural, vegan and fragranced with pure essential oils.
Christmas Tree is grounding and earthy with notes of wet pine, Christmas Pudding sweet and spicy and Mulled Wine earthy and sweet with notes of spice and flowers. Buy the set and you can decide which is your favourite… and also split the pack creating 3 different stocking fillers.
You can opt for a free gift note (typed on a vintage type writer) as well as a gift box tied with linen/jute ribbon.
This beautiful necklace is handmade from silver as well as sea glass collected from the coastline near Seaham in the North East England, so each one is unique. It’s interesting that Seaham was known for its glass factories in the mid 1800s (closing in the 1920s) and the sea glass collected along the nearby coastline now has been weathered and smoothed over time by the force of the North Sea.
Find makers in the FBWL directory to and discover more and connect with them