Friends! The holiday shopping season is truly one of my favorites. I really love picking out thoughtful gifts for people, and I especially love knowing that my money is going toward ethical brands making a difference for good in this world, and to small businesses that are making great quality things. Because I know others also love to shop this way, but it can be hard work to research brands and, let’s face it, big box stores are easier and more accessible a lot of times, I wanted to help you out by doing some of the leg work and hopefully introducing you to some brands you will love! I’ve broken it down into a few sections that will help direct your focus depending on who you’re shopping for. So, here we go!
ACCESSORIES & APPAREL BRANDS THAT GIVE BACK
Gorgeous leather sandals, bags and small purses. Stunning and modern jewelry pieces, and even some amazing textiles, scarves and baby slings. This brand is all handmade by women in other countries and particularly supports women in Uganda by employing them with steady work to earn their way to University. I LOVE that mission and it’s even better that I truly love their products. I have several things (leather jewelry roll, Brave bracelet, bandana & crossover sandals) that I truly wear a ton.
Another accessory and home goods brand that is employing women with dignified work for a fair living wage around the world. I have several necklaces, some stud earrings I wear every single day, and ornaments that I love from them!
Really unique bags with fun designs inspired by the cultures where they are made. It was founded to employ women with dignified work and a fair wage specifically for those who were trying to get out of prostitution and they continue to make a huge impact in that way!
Leather sandals and gorgeous purses, clutches and wallets all made from upcycled rubber from tires and leather that is ethically sourced and also upcycled (they have a whole collection made from recycled airplane leather – how cool is that?!). They are eco-friendly and globally minded, and I love that! I have 2 pairs of their sandals & a clutch and they are so well made and such favorites!
Gorgeous hand made mug (and a bracelet option) by a small business in Indiana, custom designed by my brother & sister-in-law. This campaign is raising money for Glory Reborn, an organization serving underprivileged women in the Philippines with quality maternity care. With an extra special twist, this mug design was made in special honor of my sweet niece Leonie who we lost last December at 24 weeks, due to Trisomy 18. It was such a hard loss for our family, but I love that Asher & Melissa are doing something so amazing in her honor to help other mamas and babies. 50% of the cost for these mugs and bracelets goes straight to Glory Reborn.
Stunning hand-knit items made by a friend and colleague in Richmond, VA, where 20% of each purchase goes toward projects and organizations to help make the world a little better – and I LOVE that business model. You can always ask which cause she is currently supporting, as I believe she has done several over the years. Her items are LEGIT my favorite winter wear and my beanies get almost daily use once the weather gets chilly. She’s got something for literally anyone on your list!
Really cool gender neutral leather goods whose proceeds go towards furthering the gospel in countries around the world. From creating dignified work, helping plant churches, and assisting leaders in those countries to go through seminary and Bible training this company is doing absolutely incredible things. And while I don’t (yet) have any of their products, I basically want ALL of them. So beautiful!
FAVORITE SMALL BUSINESSES
My absolute favorite for unique jewelry and amazing little jewelry dishes. Elyse is SO talented and everything she designs I want. Hah! I have several pairs of earrings and several jewelry dishes, and I can guarantee their amazing quality and that it will be an instant-winner for a jewelry-loving lady in your life!
Classic and beautiful dresses, beautiful aprons, stunning note cards – this brand is one of my favorites. Dreamed up and founded by my dear friend Rebekah, you will be hard pressed to find another brand as thoughtful and friendly to their customers. Their products or gift cards are a wonderful Christmas option. I have 3 dresses, a shirt and use their note cards almost exclusively for any letter writing. Such beautiful favorites!
Hand made items, boho blankets, and overall one-of-a-kind home goods. Love this shop and daily enjoy my falsa blanket, two-tiered shelves and boho wall hanging! Each item is amazing quality, with great customer service.
My favorite modern, minimalist jewelry shop with the best simple bracelets. These make such perfect gifts!
The CUTEST hand-embroidered items + an awesome embroidery book that she got published this past year and I even have some photos in! Cristin’s talent is insane and I love my necklaces and artwork pieces from her so much!
This stunning word search book has been a FAVORITE purchase of mine this year. It is not only aesthetically beautiful, it’s truly fun and relaxing. It’s become a nightly ritual to wind down before bed and was a great vacation accessory. Great gift for anyone in your life trying to unplug more!
Absolutely beautiful, artistic modern books of the Bible in a magazine format. Such a cool way to breathe new life into parts of the Bible you’ve loved for a long time, or have had a harder time connecting with. They pair stunning and unique imagery to bring the words to life in such a cool way.
BRANDS FOR MAMAS & BABIES
Handmade dolls that connect real children around the world and inspire kids to care. Such a cool mission statement! Dolls are named after real-life girls who come from vulnerable situations (but no private or personal information is shared, of course) as a way to help little girls care about and pray for others around the world. On top of that, they are absolutely adorable and such great quality. I got one for Margot and know they would make an amazing gift for a little girl in your life, or mama expecting a daughter!
A friend of mine from the midwest recently opened up this sweet Etsy shop creating little teether toys, bows, burp rags and other cute things!
My favorite leather paci clips and adorable head bands and bows.
I hope this list has been fun and helpful for you as you shop with purpose this holiday season! :) And if YOU have any favorite ethical brands or small shops, I’d love to know about them!