spanish suitcase la vida dulce carryon

5 Consciously Cool Gift Ideas that Say “Thoughtful, Personal and Artisanal”

Shopping for others can be a bit overwhelming at times; a relentless search for the gift that says “I took the time and effort to get you something I know you’d love.” Browsing the big stores can make things a bit simpler, but why not take the time to search for a gift that was made with love, intention and effort.

The Market on Culture-ist provides a unique selection of artisanal products — from handmade sweets, to eco wellness products, to sustainable fashion — and offers a great way to support small businesses during the holiday season. We’ve compiled a short list of gift ideas to make browsing just a wee bit easier, but we welcome you to check out all our vendors to find the perfect present for friends and loved ones.

Tre Olive

Adopt an Olive Tree for Someone You Love: Tre Olive

This holiday season, why not give the gift of artisanal olive oil? Tre Olive, a family owned and operated olive grove and mill in the Calabria region of southern Italy allows customers to adopt olive trees from their grove. Honoring their philosophy to work hard, treat customers like family, and create high quality, great-tasting, extra virgin olive oil from some of the finest hand-picked olives in Italy, the family ships premium cans of EVOO dring the early summer months after the olives are harvested from the adopted trees in the spring. A most thoughtful gift for the foodies in your life, this olive oil is a rich and smooth addition to almost any dish, or stands alone beautifully drizzled atop of a warm baguette.


Sevenly t-shirts - World Change is How We RollCool Clothing for a Cause: Sevenly

Sevenly’s brilliant business model and edgy, creative t-shirt designs are what sets it apart from most philanthropic for-profit companies. Each week, the staff sorts through a list of applications submitted by charities from all across the globe, and after an intense vetting process, chooses one to support for its weekly campaign. Designs are dreamed up based on the charity’s message and mission and the shirts are sold for seven days. For every purchase, Sevenly donates $7 to the charity and then a new campaign is chosen for the following week “” “One design. One week. One cause.”


Integrity Botanicals - Level Naturals Body SoapWellness and Beauty Without the Additives: Integrity Botanicals

Terri and Marc Hall, founders of Integrity Botanicals, have made shopping online for natural skincare products a cinch. The couple spent many-a-days testing the products on their site to ensure that each and every one is safe, nourishing and effective.  Most brands are organic, vegan, fair trade and/or sustainably packaged and really and truly work (I sampled many of the lines and became instantly hooked). The essentials oils, natural fatty acids and fruit and herb extracts in many of the products produce almost instant results on skin that is dehydrated and constantly exposed to free-radicals. Many of the products have an earthy or fruity scent that is not overbearing, but rather something you would smell in nature. So this holiday season, loose the additives and treat you body to a natural wellness experience.


spanish suitcase la vida dulce carryonPack Your Bags, We’re Taking a Foodie Vacation: Spanish Suitcase

Spanish Suitcase, a new online shop featuring curated assortments of Spanish food in modern, travel-themed gift baskets, is the result of an inspiring foodie vacation taken by founders Paul and Tara DeGeorges. The site offers unique collections of high quality, hard-to-find foods from Spain’s premier artisans, chefs and farmers. Assortments are available in two sizes. The larger “Suitcases” are ideal as gifts, or enjoyed with friends and family“Carry-Ons” are smaller assortments catering to the gourmand with a singular food obsession, or newbies seeking an introductory sampling of the country’s cuisine. Committed to bringing authentic and inspiring tastes of España to the United States, the company’s co-founders personally select each item sold on Spanish Suitcase by pursuing foods with superior flavor and packaging, and brands with a commitment to tradition and sustainability.  ¡Buen Provecho!


Oliberte FootwearCreating Fair Wages with Handmade Shoes in Africa: Oliberté Footwear

Tal Dehtiar spends his days working to fulfill the old proverb: “Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.” Three years ago, Mr. Dehtiar, formed Oliberté Footwear, a Toronto-based company which partners with factories, suppliers, farmers and workers to produce premium footwear in Africa that is specifically sold through Canadian retailers, and distributed across North America, Europe and online. Mr. Dehtiar’s vision was to create fair jobs, with the goal of contributing to the development of a thriving middle class. Mr. Dehtiar has chosen to partner with factories in Ethiopia and Liberia that exceed local labor standards by providing competitive wages, subsidized, or free lunches and tea breaks. Women make up approximately half the workforce at Oliberté Footwear, and are entitled to maternity leave benefits.  As the company continues to grow, Mr. Dehtiar, would like to see partner factories improve benefit structures by adding programs like health and life insurance, credit savings programs and training.


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