9 Local Artisanal Handmade Holiday Gift Ideas

12/14/2012



Happy Holidays, everyone! I eschew Christmas shopping, but I adore how everyone is growing more conscious and sensitive about shopping sustainably. On my social media streams I see people talking about buying handmade and local Christmas gifts to support local creatives in their small-to-medium business enterprises. This is a great idea, and certainly more sustainable than buying from big corporations or imported brands. Suportahan ang sariling atin! :)

Here are nine local artisanal handmade gift ideas to help you with your sustainable holiday shopping:
Alunsina leather coptic-stitch journals, Lotus Bloom pure organic soaps, Adam's French cream ice cream, Aromateria organic solid perfume, Denise Castillo's homemade almond butter, Resurrection upcycled home furnishings, Cupcake Conspiracy bacon jam, Raab's terrariums, and OS bone replica accessories.

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1. Leather Coptic-Stitch Journals by Alunsina

These journals are bound together using coptic stitch binding, an ancient Egyptian method which allows the book to be opened flat-- a convenient feature especially for artists who want to be able to scan pages in their journals. Nadja Castillo and Enan Juniosa use acid-free paper, genuine cowhide leather, and they do everything by hand, from cutting and stitching to soldering and embellishing. Available by online order. Starting at P250 for small journals and P550 for regular journals. The design on the cover of the journal can be customized with your name, logo, or illustration.


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2. Handmade Pure Organic Soaps by Lotus Bloom

Natural vegan ingredients such as distilled rainwater, virgin coconut oil, coconut cream, oatmeal, herbs,  and cocoa butter make these soaps a rich, healing, buttery, luxurious treat for the skin. Joanne Quintana uses the traditional soap-making process inspired by the Savon de Marseille and honed by her own research and experimentation. Available by online order. Starting at P150 each. Each soap is packaged in its own lovely little biodegradable box.

Review by: Sustainable Manila

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3. Adam's Seriously Good Ice Cream

Adam Lieber's Rose restaurant at Bonifacio Global City serves this decadent frozen delight-- handmade ice cream made from French cream and natural ingredients. Their unique range of flavors include Himalayan Salted Caramel, Ambassador's Butter Cream with Almond Brittle, and Dulcinea de Manila with Spanish Manchego cheese and red grapes. Available for dine-in and take-out. Starting at P125 per scoop. Custom flavors and large packs may also be ordered.

Website: Adam's Ice Cream
Facebook: Adam's Ice Cream

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4. Organic Solid Perfume by Aromateria

These cute little sticks of solid perfume come in a range of delicious fragrances for men and women. All-natural ingredients, free of alcohol, parabens, and phalates make it a safe alternative compared to commercial perfumes. The fragrance lasts for approximately 3 hours-- varying depending on the scent and the user's body chemistry-- and reapplication is super easy. Available by online order or at AC+632 store at Greenbelt 5. Priced at P250 each. Custom aromatherapy products may also be ordered.

Website: Aromateria
Facebook: Aromateria
Reviews by: Krysty, Tina

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5. Homemade Almond Butter by Denise Castillo

Paleo-friendly homemade almond butter by Denise Castillo contains roasted almonds, sea salt, and extra virgin olive oil, for a smooth blend comparable in consistency to local peanut butter like Lily's. Safe for diabetics, while others can simply add their sweetener of choice (such as raw honey, coconut sugar, stevia, raw maple syrup, and muscovado sugar). Priced at P480 per 300ml bottle.

Email thenutbutt@gmail.com for orders.

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6. Upcycled Home Furnishings by Resurrection Gallery

Innovative architect and designer Leah Sanchez creates these beautiful home furniture and decor using parts from vintage pieces, salvaged wood, and scrap materials. Old computer monitors-- the fat kind-- become glittering lampshades. Wine bottles and scrap wood are transformed into enchanting candelabras. Leftover wood pieces are assembled into one-of-a-kind tables. Electric fan grills become mirror frames. Each functional and whimsical piece is a work of art made of unexpected parts, leading one to exclaim: "Wow, I wish I'd thought of that!"


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7. Bacon Jam, Bacon Butter, & Bacon Parmesan Cream Cheese by Cupcake Conspiracy

Slow-cooked sweet and salty jam with chunky bacon bits. Parmesan cream cheese with bacon bits. Butter with bacon bits. Available by online order. Need I say more?

Review by: Manila Reviews

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8. Terrariums by Raab

Bespoke terrariums by Raab Bustamante, housed in exquisite apothecary glass vessels, using carefully selected plants, moss, rocks, and soil material. These living works of art bring fresh air and oxygen into the home, and are perfect for those of us who don't have the luxury of space for outdoor gardens. Available by online order.

Review by: Daphne

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9. Bone Replica Accessories by OS

These "bones", sculpted out of high-quality polyurethane, blend ancient aesthetics with postmodern, edgy fashion. OS Accessories offers a line of necklaces, bracelets, harnesses, and headwear that promise to "give your personal style some teeth". Each piece is carefully handcrafted by multi-disciplinary creatives AJ Omandac and Paul Jatayna. Available by online order, and in some stores.

Website: OS Accessories

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That's it! Of course, there are plenty of other local handmade brands I wasn't able to cover in my blog post. What are some of your favourites?

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