After writing up this year’s Zero Waste & Vegan Gift Guide I realized there was no mention of basket ideas. Gift baskets are my specialty, they are so quick to pull together and look like you put 100% more effort into your gift than you actually did.

I thrift baskets throughout the year for a few dollars each and pack recycled materials into the baskets as ‘stuffing’. Think tissue paper from a gift you received, packing paper from an online order, and even shredded paper from your office. Recipients can reuse the baskets so nothing goes to waste. This is really useful because everyone hates having loads of waste, although I could with going out to buy garbage disposal unit for my home. They work wonders!

Here are a few gift basket ideas that you can pull together for anyone on your list.

1.DIY Cleaning Supplies: This may seem silly to give someone cleaning supplies but if you DIY and gift to someone else who cares about chemicals in their house it will be appreciated. DIY laundry soap and vinegar spray can both be made in bulk and gifted to multiple people as a hostess gift. Add knit scrubbies, a plant fiber brush, and a little tag with the laundry soap recipe to finish off the basket.

2. Useful Basket: Super useful items combined with something fun are always well received. I included a cute thrifted mug, local coffee bought in bulk and packaged in a reused jar, Dot & Army’s Utensil kit, and a non-toxic, cruelty-free, & vegan nail polish from Sunday’s (comes in completely plastic-free packaging). These linen utensil kits are a big hit every time I gift them because they contain everything you need (silverware, napkin, and a straw). Switch out the nail polish with unpackaged soap, plant cuttings, some face oil, etc. to make it more personal to your recipient.

3. Kitchen Lover: Super easy to throw together, grab some bulk bin snacks, I used dates here but nuts, trail mix, fig bars, date rolls, etc. all work too. Add a DIY element, I made a couple batches of mint extract for gifting, vanilla extract is also easy to make. Finish with cloth napkins, I used personalized Dot & Army linen napkins to really joosh up the gift, there are plenty of great options secondhand as well. You can switch out the snacks with loose leaf tea, a spice mix you created, local coffee, or a great olive oil you find in bulk.

Other great basket additions include unpackaged soap, local or secondhand pottery, CF beauty products in zero waste packaging (like Urb Apothecary or Meow Meow Tweet), dishtowels, bamboo toothbrushes, DIY toothpaste, dish soap bars, a book, a pocket knife, or a water bottle.

Feel free to think outside the box and use something other than a basket to ‘wrap’ your gifts. Great purses, glass containers, and pretty dish towels are all easy to find secondhand or local and fill up with a few little things as a gift. Gift baskets like these make ideal condolence gifts to lift someone’s spirits.

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