Presents of Mind blog

new purpose to gift-giving

UK indies and creatives mix imagination with resourcefulness to make a material difference to #shopindie gift-giving.

They showed it again during the recent #ecogiftsday on #UKGiftAM – providing a masterclass in how to spare the environment and spoil the rest of us at the same time.

The glorious gift ideas on display demonstrated how they’re In their eco-friendly element whether working with recycled glass, wood, fabrics or even plastic.

Pictured (clockwise from top left):

  • Packaging – Many makers shared eco-friendly packaging tips but passionate recycler and Isle of Man bag designer extraordinaire SammDesigns ‘capped’ the lot! This example of her recycled finds gift wrap service features a T-shirt ribbon and ‘corsage’ made from a fancy dress costume, the rubber flowers of her old swim cap and charity shop buttons. “It just needs different thinking,” she said.
  • Glass – Don’t throw it away, turn it into highly distinctive crazy birds! West Sussex one-woman enterprise OceanponyCrafts has seen her colourful creations flying off the shelves
  • Wood - Cornwall wood and resin artist RavenHandcrafted makes pens using repurposed or recycled woods, water-based inks and dyes and natural oils and waxes
  • Felt – Cambridgeshire's The Fabric Vase Company upcycled this vase cover from an old wool blanket, using natural soft wool tops and incorporating sari silk and shredded silk scarves
  • Ecosilver - All the silver used by Liverpool jewellery designer Joolzery in her handmade sterling silver geometric studs is recycled and ecosilver
  • Plastic – Not plastic-free but can you believe this used to be a plastic bottle? Plastic is given fantastic other-worldly life in in weird and giftable ways by Cornwall sculptor Art of Kuriology
  • Sea plastic - found on the beach and turned into a silver and blue ring by London metalsmith I Love Dolly Jewellery. She said: “Mama Nature is good to us despite what we do to her.”
  • Cloth – adorable hares (and, of course, dolls) are made using natural dyed recycled cloth by Yorkshire textile artist DollsWithAttitudes
  • Centre – Leicestershire eco store The Cleaning Cabinet partners with individuals who constantly create eco-friendly products from soaps, skincare and haircare to cleaning

counting on ukgifthour power

Check the latest numbers that add up to the fact you can count on #UKGiftHourPower!

As you may know, UKGiftHourPower tracks sales made for UK indies and creatives during the weekend Twitter #shopindie marketplace #UKGiftHour #UKGiftAM.

9 – was the number of minutes it took for a beach bag from Isle of Wight recycled fashion designer SammDesigns to be sold after being posted, beating her previous personal best by three minutes. Yorkshire jewellery designer Twiggypeasticks also recorded a sale within 10 minutes of posting. But both still a little short of the overall record of seven minutes held by Lincolnshire multi-craft maestro Create-England

43 – was the number of face coverings that London homeless support collective Beanies Masato reported selling after their launch on UKGiftHour. Each face covering sold also means one going to homeless people. Up to the time of publishing this blog, it had increased further to 75 – just five short of their target of 80

1014 – the number of followers that the UKGIftHourPower account has on Twitter burst through the 1000 mark last week and has carried on rising

117 – is the total number of indies and creatives who have made sales through UKGiftHour UKGiftAM since it started. It has been boosted in the last couple of week by sales for London jewellery metalsmith I Love Dolly, ethereal Lancashire accessories designer SophiaStrangeGB, West Sussex glass and driftwood craftswoman OceanponyCrafts, East Sussex gifts emporium Nola Gifts UK (where 20% of profits are donated to help homeless people), nature-inspired artist WildBrambleHandmade, London textile artist facelessbilly and (pictured) Essex woodturner Nicholas Rowe.

For the month of August, we are UKGiftHour only from 9am-10am every Saturday and Sunday – we thought we’d give our hosting team a breather after all their #supportsmallbusiness heroics so far this year so UKGiftAM won’t be returning in full until Saturday 6 September.

But as you can see, we're still the #giftfinder that keeps on giving – count on us!

july #shopindie sales hotting up

Six UK indies and creatives celebrated sales during the Twitter #shopindie showcase #UKGiftHour #UKGiftAM last weekend.

This takes the number who have tempted buyers since the beginning of July to 24 - and the total number of indies and creatives who have achieved sales through #UKGiftHour since it started to 110.

Read about how the sales reached this point here and here.

  • Latest to join the #UKGiftHourPower sellers list (top row from left) was north London artist artwithmollie. Joining in for the first time she made an immediate impact with her handmade prints and cards inspired by nature.
  • Nature also provided the appeal for Peterborough glass artist SamphireGlass who created a sales buzz with his honeycomb dichroic glass pendant and sweet bee charm.
  • Beautiful pillar candles made from fallen yew tree branches by Herefordshire wood artisans Goodmans Handmade proved an irresistible attraction.

Bottom row from left:

  • New face coverings from London homeless support collective Beanies Masato were in demand. Seven designs in several colours were added to the range for pre-ordering with funds raised going to homeless outreach.
  • Saturday was #ecogiftsday on #UKGiftHour (separate update to come) – it was also #UKGiftHourPower day for Carmarthenshire outdoor gift specialist Adventure Accessories who snapped up a sale with this fun raffia bucket hat.
  • #UKGiftHour wouldn’t be #UKGiftHour without a sale for Liverpool earring designer ForeverChic. She’s reported up to a dozen sales over the past few weeks and these daisy hoop hotties joined the roll call.

Join us for UKGiftHour UKGiftAM on Twitter every Saturday and Sunday from 9am-noon – there’s always fun, support and a very warm welcome!

#shopindie point of sale

Our weekend Twitter #supportsmallbusiness marketplace #UKGiftHour #UKGiftAM can't guarantee #shopindie sales – but it's showing it can increase the chances for UK indies and creatives.

For the second weekend in a row, almost a dozen makers heard the online sales tills ringing and reported cases of what we call #UKGiftHourPower.

It included a number of first-time sellers – taking the total number of creatives who have achieved sales during #UKGiftHour #UKGiftAM since it started to 109.

On this occasion, buyers were tempted by (clockwise from top left):

  • A set of British Sign Language tiles by Lincolnshire sign language specialists The Worble Shack
  • Handpainted robin keyring by West Yorkshire illustrator Fawa Shah
  • Rainbow bracelet by Bedfordshire jewellery designer The Beaded Magpie
  • Blue hydrangeas notebook (featuring fabric from Suffolk suppliers The Little Fabric Shop) by Cambridgeshire bookbinder Handcrafted Books by Sue Day
  • Madness-inspired ‘Our House’ T-shirt – from which some sale proceeds go to Beanies Masato homeless outreach fund – by London fashion and homeware collective Masato Jones
  • Burslem spring flowers platter or jewellery tidy, handpainted with poppy and daisy flowers, from York vintage homeware curator The Georgian Cottage
  • Teal and black leopard print polymer clay earrings by Liverpool jewellery designer Forever Chic – taking her July sales during #UKGiftHour #UKGiftAM to an amazing dozen
  • Nature journal stencil by eclectic Nottinghamshire craft house Spratt's Designs
  • Centre – a sale from the #UKGiftAM Facebook page. A box of HB grade superior graphite pencils from UK online stationer Stationery and Art. The retro styles are a re-edition of independent Portuguese brand Viarco’s products from the 1940s to the 1960s.

Join us for UKGIftHour UKGiftAM on Twitter every Saturday and Sunday from 9am-noon – we’re the shopindie #giftfinder at your fingertips!

Now you can find us on Facebook and PInterest too!

another power of good for #shopindie

#UKGiftHourPower was on active duty again at the weekend Twitter #supportsmallbusiness marketplace #UKGiftHour #UKGiftAM.

UK indies and creatives caught buyers’ eyes with special #shopindie #giftideas including (clockwise from top left):

  • Long drop earrings from the pink summer stripes collection by Liverpool polymer jewellery designer Forever Chic - actually one of four #UKGiftAM sales that set her till ringing and her happy dancing!
  • Multi-coloured baby elephant by Norwich ceramic artist Hazlehurst Ceramics
  • Handmade wooden pizza and pesto knives by Staffordshire wood artisans Whispers of Wood
  • Egyptian cotton sarong by bespoke fabrics and furnishings stylists Neith Textiles
  • Two tone silver disc earrings by East Sussex enamel jewellery designer MaisyPlum
  • Pink Flamingos card by Laura Stone from the Sarah’s Online Cards independent artists collective
  • Hedgehog keyring by Lincolnshire felt and fabric fashioner Ellie’s Treasures
  • Floyd scarf – inspired by the Pink Floyd artwork for ‘Dark Side of the Moon’ – by Manchester accessories aces Ollie and Fred, a member of the Masato Jones design collective
  • Centre – We’re not just selling on Twitter, we’re selling through our Facebook page too! This handmade antique book-themed bag-in-a-bag by Yorkshire maker ZebraMingo Crafts was snapped up over the weekend – as was a selection of #ecofriendly cards by Berkshire art and stationery virtuoso DaisyWings

We were also notified of sales for Isle of Wight recycled fashion designer SammDesigns and Lincolnshire handmade multi-skiller CreateEngland.

Join us for UKGIftHour UKGiftAM on Twitter every Saturday and Sunday from 9am-noon – we’re the shopindie #giftfinder at your fingertips!

Now you can find us on Facebook and PInterest too!

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