Gift Guide: Best Sustainable Product Designs Gift Guide: Best Sustainable Product Designs
Design

Gift Guide: Best Sustainable Product Designs

by Paul Donald

January 6, 2013

 
At Branch we sell only products that are sustainably made. We consider both their materials and their manufacturing process.
 
But what most excites us are products that either make use of materials that would otherwise be wasted, or that offer alternatives to wasteful practices. With that—and the season of giving—in mind, here are some of our favorite holiday gifts.
 
Chalkboard Tablet / Chalkboard Pad
These are the most clever use of discarded gymnasium bleachers we've found. The wood is milled, painted with chalkboard paint, and a leather strap (reclaimed as well, from WWII-era gun holsters) is added to hold the included chalk pencil. They're available in two handy sizes, and hang on a wall or on an optional stand made for the purpose.
 


 
iPad Easel
From the same folks who brought you the Chalkboard Tablets, and likewise made from reclaimed wood, this is a multi-purpose stand for your iPad. Hang it on the wall for a swivel holder, or remove the peg and set the flat piece on a desk or tabletop for a handy stand.
 

 
Reclaimed Wood Ornaments
With forms reminiscent of glass Christmas ornaments, the twist is that these are made from reclaimed walnut. They're hand-turned by artisans in Portland, and no two are alike. 
 

 
Reclaimed Sail Stockings
We had these custom-made from Branch. They are created using organic-cotton canvas and reclaimed sailboat sails—making them über-durable. We love the way the colors are of traditional Christmas stockings when they're turned inside-out, and they bring a modern touch to a holiday hearth.
 

 
KeepCups
These replace the disposable cup you get for your to-go coffee drink. Made from food-grade plastic, each features a silicone band on which you can indicate your preference before handing the cup to your barista. Branch has curated three custom colors of these cups, and they're among our most popular items.
 

 
Produce Bags
Designed to replace the plastic bags you get in the supermarket produce section, these are great for produce, as well as lots of other household uses. They're sold as a set of five, each with a color-coded tag.
 

 
Gift Tag Stamp Set / Mixtape Stamp Set
With these stamp kits you can turn any leftover paper (shopping bags, etc.) into clever gift tags. 

 
Rope Canisters
Made in a kiln that's powered by wind energy, these are great for storing life's little necessities. We love the juxtaposition of the hard ceramic and the soft nautical rope used for the handles.
 

 
Seed Bombs
Do you ever walk by a vacant lot and wish you could brighten it up in some way? You can, with Seed Bombs. These are cherry-sized balls of dried soil, and they're chock-full of wildflower seeds. When you deposit them and the rains come, the seeds plant themselves, spawning a mini-garden of flowers. Available in many varieties, with seeds native to various regions of the U.S.
 

 
Reclaimed Skateboard Tops / YoYo
What to do with broken skateboard decks? Turn them into one-of-a-kind spinning tops and yo-yo's, that's what. These are handmade in Portland, and no two are alike.


 
Super 8 Camera Candle
This isn't your mother's decorative candle. It's made from 100 percent natural beeswax, and shaped into the form of a vintage Super 8 camera. It's the perfect gift for the cinematographer on your list, or the person who appreciates yesterday's technology.

 
WASARA Party Kits
Not so much a gift, but perfect for hosting holiday events, these feature WASARA tableware, or as we like to call them, "the world's most beautiful paper plates." They're made from agricultural waste—sugar cane fiber, bamboo, and reed pulp—and they're completely compostable, even in your home-composting system. So they make cleanup a breeze. Which is exactly what you need after hosting a group.
 

 
Images courtesy of Branch Home
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Gift Guide: Best Sustainable Product Designs