• Gift Ideas that Support a Circular Economy

    November 14, 2018 • GUIDES, LIFE, PLASTIC FREE / WASTE FREE

    There are lots of innovative businesses moving towards and developing products to suit a circular economy, and what better time to support these businesses than at Christmas time, when lots of purchasing and gift giving takes place.

    Here at Biome we are excited to be able to bring you practical gift ideas that have been made from recycled, upcycled or reclaimed materials, gifts that are designed to return to the earth at the end of their life, gifts that are designed to be handed down from one generation to the next, and gifts that can be recycled.

    We are also excited to be able to provide you with the recipes, workshops and raw ingredients to make your own gifts or give skills instead of something material.

    So continue reading as we share some of our favourite gift ideas that support a circular economy.

    What is a circular economy?

    According to the Ellen Macarthur Foundation, a circular economy is a framework for an economy that is restorative and regenerative by design (1).

    It is based on three fundamental principles:

    • Design out waste and pollution
    • Keep products and materials in use
    • Regenerate natural systems

    A circular economy is different to linear ‘take, make, dispose’ process, which depletes finite resources and creates products that end up in landfill and incinerators. Instead, it takes its approach from living systems. A circular economy anticipates and designs for resources to be either safely returned to nature or back into systems where they can be reuse or renewed (2).

    Gift ideas that support a circular economy

    By supporting gift ideas that support a circular economy like these, you slow down the ‘take, make, dispose’ linear economy, and do more with fewer virgin resources. You also encourage innovation and aid in developing the mindset that there is no such thing as waste, only resources to tap into.

    Here are some of our favourite gifts ideas that support a circular economy.


    Gift ideas that support a circular economy | Biome Eco Stores

    Ecowings bags are made in Central India from used tyre tubes and car seat belts that would otherwise go to landfill or be incinerated. They have so far upcycled 50 tonnes of tyre tubes by turning them in to bags like this laptop bag, satchels, wallets and accessories.

    As a Fairtrade organisation, Ecowings prohibit child labour, give fair wages, maintains a good working environment, and allow craftsmen and communities to become self reliant. All Ecowings products are vegan certified by PETA and cruelty free.

    Shop Ecowings here >

    Beeswax wraps

    Gift ideas that support a circular economy | Biome Eco Stores

    Beeswax wraps are a really practical gift idea for anyone. They are designed replace single use plastic cling wrap in the kitchen, and you can use them to cover bowls, wrap sandwiches or fold them into a pouch to store snacks. You can replenish the beeswax every few months to extend the life of the wrap, and as they are made from natural materials, at the end of their life they will return to the earth.

    Beeswax wraps are very easy to make yourself using upcycled fabric and our DIY beeswax wraps kit. Be sure to use a natural fibre fabric, such cotton or hemp.

    You can also buy premade beeswax wraps or vegan wax wraps here >

    DIY Workshop Tickets

    Gift ideas that support a circular economy | Biome Eco Stores

    Give the gift of skill development instead of something material with a ticket to one of Biome’s regular DIY workshops. We hold regular workshops in various locations in Brisbane, Queensland, focusing on a range of topics. Learn how to make your own skin care products, DIY cleaning hacks, how to pickle vegetables, how to start composting, how to go zero waste, how to weave your own basket, the art of furoshiki and much more.

    For workshop times, locations, and to book, go here >

    Green Start puzzles

    Gift ideas that support a circular economy | Biome Eco Stores

    The earth friendly Green Start range includes puzzles, games and books made from recycled materials, FSC wood, and eco friendly inks. Every Green Start product is designed to develop a child’s awareness of the natural world and our connection with everything around us.

    Shop Green Start puzzles and toys here >


    Gift ideas that support a circular economy | Biome Eco Stores

    Solidteknics wrought iron cookware is made in Australia and built to last generations. In fact, Solidteknics comes with a multi-century warranty, helping you to break the cycle of disposable synthetic imports that end up in landfill.

    Solidteknics was founded by Australian-born, international chef equipment engineer and innovator, Mark Henry, who has 30 years experience in diverse manufacturing and patented innovations designed to last for multiple generations, such as Füri knives.  Mark says: “I’m tired of all the disposable consumer junk out there. We won’t be just innovating, patenting and growing sustainable Australian-made innovations, but following a more holistic philosophy: an integration of personal and business life… and a strong contribution to the community now, and for future generations.”

    Shop Solidteknics here >

    Corner Block Studio frames

    Gift ideas that support a circular economy | Biome Eco Stores

    Corner block Studio card, book and record frames have been designed and handmade in Brisbane from reclaimed timber. They allow you to create ever evolving wall decor by framing artwork quickly and switching your display easily. Each piece varies in colour tones and character, making these frames a beautifully unique, premium quality gift idea.

    Shop Corner Block Studio here >

    Biome Bee House

    Gift ideas that support a circular economy | Biome Eco Stores

    The Biome Bee House has been handmade in Brisbane by the Indooroopilly Men’s Shed from reused pallet boxes and weed bamboo. These bee houses provide a safe place for solitary Australian native bees and wasps to establish a home and raise their young.

    Shop the Biome Bee House here >

    Earth Greetings

    Gift ideas that support a circular economy | Biome Eco Stores

    Earth Greetings are dedicated to eco friendly stationery designs. Made in Australia from 100% post consumer recycled paper and printed with vegetable inks, the Earth Greetings offset their carbon emissions by providing native species reforestation in one of Australia’s biodiversity hotspots.

    The Earth Greetings range includes cards, gift tags, wrapping paper, diaries, calendars and more featuring artwork from Australian artists.

    Shop Earth Greetings here >

    Camphor Laurel Cutting Board

    Gift ideas that support a circular economy | Biome Eco Stores

    Our camphor laurel cutting boards are made in Australia from salvaged camphor laurel. Camphor laurel is recognised as a serious environment weed species in Australia, and control programs advocate integrated removal and replacement with native trees. Camphor laurel that has been removed is turned into beautiful, functional cutting boards and cheese boards, and by utilising this ethically acceptable timber, we contribute to the environment in a positive way.

    Shop camphor laurel cutting boards here >

    ChicoBag rePETe Travel Backpack

    Gift ideas that support a circular economy | Biome Eco Stores

    This ChicoBag is diverting waste from landfill and polluting our oceans, as it is made from 100% post-consumer recycled plastic bottles. While it has a 15L capacity, this bag weighs only 204 grams, and features an internal pocket for a hydration bladder, two side pockets for bottles and a zip pocket with internal carabiner which also acts as the stuffing pouch. ChicoBag is a Certified B Corporation, and they consider the environment and consumer’s health in all their products.

    Shop ChicoBag here >

    Biome Organic Cotton Produce Bags

    Gift ideas that support a circular economy | Biome Eco Stores

    Biome’s organic cotton produce bags will return to the earth at the end of their life. Made ethically by a family business in India, our produce bags are strong, washable, multipurpose, easy to mend and look great. They’ll get lots of interest at the check out too! Our organic cotton produce bags make a really good secret santa gift!

    Shop organic cotton produce bags here >

    Further reading

    (1) https://www.ellenmacarthurfoundation.org/circular-economy/concept

    (2) http://circulareconomyaustralia.com/