The alternative Mother’s day gift guide by Holly Foat (charity shop addict and thrifter)

With mother’s day fast approaching, we’re all thinking about what we *need* to buy for our mums. We want to get them something nice, something they’ll really like, something a little different and something that isn’t going to end up in the bin in a week (I’m looking at you cheapy shops selling poor quality crap). So, what to buy? Check out these less consumerist ideas!

Buy nothing

I don’t mean don’t bother, although that is an option (hashtag NotBuyingIt) but buy something that isn’t STUFF – I’m thinking national trust membership, theatre or cinema tickets or take your mum to an event (I took my dad to see the British Touring cars at Thruxton one year). Not their cup of tea? How about something like a cow or goat via Oxfam, or a bomb finding rat?

Magawa a bomb finding rat at work

Make something

If you want something to physically give, why not make something? Then your gift is unique, one of a kind and very special because it took your time and care rather than cash. Not sure what to make? Why not try one of those shops where you can paint a mug or vase, rather than making something from scratch? Or repurpose something second-hand – there are loads of tutorials online or check Pinterest for inspiration. I once gave my mum a photoframe I bought second-hand and had painted! (She then repainted it because she didn’t like the colours I used!) Not feeling creative in an arty way? Why not cook her a nice dinner or bake a cake? (Totally not my forte so don’t feel bad if you’re not keen on making a gift – no judgement here!)

Buy something second-hand

I LOVE second-hand! Seriously, other people’s unwanted stuff is just awesome – people donate brand new bits and bobs to charity shops as well as vintage stuff too! You never know what you’ll find perusing second-hand. The great thing about charity shops is that you’re recycling (saving something from the waste stream) and supporting a charity. Not got the patience for trawling through the shops, then check out ebay or gum tree!

Buy something handmade

Definitely an easier option than making your own and a fantastic way to support small independent makers is buying handmade! You can find loads of amazing handmade items in etsy (I like to search for upcycled to find amazing products made from materials that would have been rubbish). Some of my favourite makers are Wyatt and Jack who make bags from old bouncy castles and Nkuku who use recycled materials where possible and support artisans across the world. Check out The Artizans for some really amazing handmade jewellery and homewares. Or you could buy earrings from Trend Tonic of course!

Geode in Daisy Print

Buy plants

You can’t go wrong with a bunch of flowers! If you can afford to avoid the supermarket flowers, buy from your local independent florist. Living plants are even better so why not buy wildflower seeds and plant them together (totally stole this idea from No Serial Number Magazines Valentine ’s Day post). If you’re green fingered, why not buy some plants and make up a terrarium, or decorate a plant pot to give with a plant? Tree planting is a great way to reduce your carbon emissions, so gifting a tree or doing some tree planting together could be a really nice low impact idea.

I could carry on spewing random ideas all day but I’ll stop and let you work out what you want to do for mother’s day (if anything at all). Big hugs to those who struggle with mother’s day – why not buy yourself a plant to parent (my cats *might* be getting me a mother’s day card this year).

I don’t want to get all preachy but please do bear in mind the environmental impact of your gifts, and if you can, don’t buy loads – buy less, buy better, vote with your feet and show you care for the future at the same time. Whatever you decide to do for mother day, just remember that it’s the thought that counts, not how much you spend.

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