A jack russel dog looking up towards the camera while standing next to a decorated Christmas tree

Ethical gifts to celebrate a kinder Christmas — for people, the planet and animals.

Searching for the perfect gift can be a mission.
Animals Australia

Animals Australia team

Last updated December 17, 2021

Here are some of our favourite gift ideas from companies and organisations that are not only creating wonderful products, but also doing good for people, animals, and the planet.

With wearable art, advent calendars for our furry companions, and gift cards that sprout real flowers — get ready to cross names off your Christmas list!

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Beekeeper Parade backpack

1. BeeKeeper Parade

BeeKeeper Parade specialises in upcycled handbags, backpacks, home décor and accessories. Their mission: to create products that change the world and do no harm to the environment. And they are absolutely living up to that statement. BeeKeeper Parade repurposes discarded textiles for their products and supports initiatives for quality education for children in Cambodia. That would be impressive enough, but their range of Christmas cards and gift tags also grow real flowers when planted.

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A cute brown calf licking a hand of a person at Edgards Mission in Australia

2. Edgar’s Mission

Our friends at Edgar’s Mission provide safe haven for rescued farm animals — and a range of super-sweet festive gifts. From pyjamas, cookbooks and Christmas cards to calendars, you can also support these tireless animal advocates with a gift donation in a loved one’s name. Here’s to kindness this festive season!

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Magpie Goose fashion advertisement

3. Magpie Goose

Magpie Goose celebrates First Nations cultures, peoples and stories through the medium of fashion. The ‘wearable art’ pieces are designed in collaboration with First Nations artists, and made by hand out of natural, plant-based fibre.

The brand is also on the path to zero waste — using no plastic packaging, and turning garment offcuts into baby rompers or unique accessories like scrunchies and dogkerchiefs. Head to the Magpie Goose online store and support this Aboriginal owned business creating both clothes and positive change right here in Australia.

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Cute Dog

4. Vegan Grocery Store

The Vegan Grocery Store is a one-stop shop for animal-friendly Christmas goodies. You’ll be spoilt for choice with their selection of sweet treats, gift hampers, accessories, and home and body essentials. They also have you covered for your festive feasts, with plant-based versions of Christmas favourites — from hearty roasts and rock candy to advent calendars for dogs. Head to the Vegan Grocery Store website, or into one of their physical stores in Sydney or Melbourne.

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A person holding a goodwill wine

5. Goodwill Wine

When gifting wine this Christmas (to others, or yourself), you can give twice with Goodwill Wine. 50% of their profits go towards a charity of your choosing — meaning you can support our work, or the work of other organisations shaping a brighter future for animals, people, or the planet, when organising drinks for Christmas!

So far, Goodwill Wine’s incredible commitment has funded thousands of meals for people living in poverty in Australia, bought fire-fighting equipment, helped re-home orangutans, and much more. For delicious Australian wine delivered to your door, visit Goodwill Wine.

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Collection of bags and fashion items at display in By The Sea Collection store

6. By The Sea Collection

Dedicated to raising awareness and developing a culture of sustainability, By the Sea Collection offers a range of fun, up-cycled cork bags, wallets, and laptop cases. Using off-cut materials, carbon-neutral delivery companies, and eco-packaging, the brand creates pieces with big personally, and minimal environmental impact. By the Sea Collection can sometimes be found at select markets around Sydney (check their website for any upcoming market dates) and online here.

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Fashion branding Clothing the Gaps

7.  Clothing the Gaps

Through dynamic fashion for both adults and kids, Clothing the Gaps celebrates First Nations peoples and cultures, and advocates for positive social change. Driven by the desire to elevate, educate, and motivate, the label was awarded ‘Business of the year’ at the 2020 Dreamtime Awards. You can visit the Clothing the Gaps flagship store in Melbourne, pop into stockists across the country, or shop online here.

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Merchandise of BirdLife Australia

8. BirdLife Australia

For over one hundred years, BirdLife Australia has been devoted to ensuring a bright future for Australia’s native birds. Their dedicated team carry out research, advocacy, and conservation efforts to protect threatened birds across the country.

Like Animals Australia, BirdLife Australia is a not-for-profit organisation whose important work is dependent on generous donations. You can support their crucial efforts for birds by shopping at The Nest, BirdLife’s e-store. For bird-lovers and animal-lovers alike, there are socks, calendars, totes, and stunning little bird pins which would all make for meaningful stocking-stuffers this Christmas.

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A women with her child holding Happily Made branded blanket

9. Happily Made

For gorgeous blankets, toys and accessories, look no further than Happily Made. Empowering people through business, for over a decade they’ve created paid work opportunities for women in rural Cambodia. Every stunning Happily Made piece is handwoven, supporting the traditional craft that has been handed down between Cambodian women over generations. Head to the Happily Made website here, or straight to their special Sleepy Snoogus range of soft animal toys that fund schoolbooks, uniforms, end English tuition for the children of the Happily Made knitters.

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A boy holding a gift pack by Little Passports

10. Little Passports

The perfect gift for budding little adventurers, Little Passports enables children to ‘travel’ the globe — via parcels delivered straight to their mailbox. Each month, they will learn about, and celebrate, cultures from around the world, through exciting stories and hands-on activities. A present that keeps on giving, Little Passports is sure to foster a sense of global community and compassion, inspiring the children of today who will become the change-makers of tomorrow.

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Local op-shop

Bonus: Local op shops and vintage stores

While this recommendation isn’t a specific brand or store, how could a list of ethical shopping ideas not include an op shop mention? Second-hand stores are jam-packed with vintage treasures — the trick is to be patient and thorough while you browse through the overcrowded isles, piles and racks.

Some of the items you happen across may be unique and perfect as they are. Others may require some creative thought as to how they can be upcycled or repurposed; tins and mugs can make great planters, as an example, and scarves make great dual-purpose presents doubling as gift wrapping paper.

Australia is one of the highest consumers of textiles per person in the world, and each year, we throw out nearly just as much as we consume. Scoring great pre-owned pieces is one of the most planet-friendly ways to shop, over the festive season and throughout the year.

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A portrait of cute lamb with balck background with Christmas sparkles

Curating a kinder Christmas for all

This Christmas and beyond, we can each make a conscious effort to give minimal, meaningful gifts. By carefully selecting items that are animal-free, sustainable, and fostering positive social change, we can extend compassion far beyond our immediate circles.

After we’ve written the last flower-sprouting gift tag and placed it with a present under the tree, we can tackle the next, more scrumptious item on the Christmas to-do list — festive feasts. Head to the VegKit blog for food-related gift inspiration and recipes, and continue with your compassionate Christmas journey from tree to table.

Please note this article is not sponsored or paid for – we are just sharing some of the groups and companies we love, to inspire gifting that is kinder to animals and the planet!