Tiny House, Tiny Living, The Tiny Life.

Posts Tagged Gifts

5 Gifts For Tiny Housers

Out of all the things that comes up with tiny houses, the holidays might be the trickiest for tiny house folks.  Even after years of living tiny, people around me still feel the need to give gifts.  While it isn’t necessary, I appreciate gifts much more because people really have to think of a creative ways to gift without taking up space in my tiny house.

Today I wanted to share the top 5 gift ideas for tiny house folks.

If you are having trouble telling people what you want for the holidays, try sending them this post so they can get some ideas!

1. Experiences:

This is my absolute favorite gift to give and receive because it means that I can do something fun with that person that I care about.  It could be dinner out, tickets to an event or some other adventure.  I try to think of things that the person likes and often get two so that not only is it an awesome experience, but we can experience it together.

Gift idea: Use code  “tiny2013″ for $50 off tickets to the Tiny House Conference click here!

Conference--xmas

2. Consumables

Next up is things that people can eat or use up.  Things that after a certain amount of use is are gone.  A perfect example of this is food items.  We are all busy and most of us like food, so making something or buying something that person likes is a great gift.  Think of things that are difficult to make or some other cause for it not being a regular thing.  Other things outside of food could be candles, eco friendly bath products, fire wood.

Gift Idea: a subscription to a CSA (community support agriculture).

consumeables

3. Help them pursue a dream

For those we care about, we want to see them succeed.  Find out some of things that the person is working towards in their goals.  Also learning about what is on people’s bucket list is another great way to get ideas of what you might be able to help them with their goals.  If people ask you for what you want, you can think of things that will help you achieve your goals.  The obvious thing here for this blog is how can you better achieve your goal of living in a tiny house?  Get a copy of your plans made up, get that resource you’ve been eying or what about getting some one on one coaching from us here?

Gift idea:  One on One coaching with the experts of The Tiny Life at our sister website – Tiny House Craftsman!

building---coaching
4. Something you’re already going to buy anyway.

I do this a lot, since I don’t really need much, I don’t buy much either.  So when something comes up that I need to replace it or buy something new, I hold off and suggest it as a gift when others ask.  For example, I am in need of new shoes, have been for a month or so, but I’ve been holding off.  This way those who must have to give me a gift can and its something that I really need; Often something that will replace a worn out item.

Gift Idea: Shoes, socks, tires, etc.

buy-anyway

5. Digital or no tangible items.

Sometimes there are gifts that take up no space at all and can be used later on.   I’m thinking of gift cards, vouchers and digital downloads.  A gift card to your favorite restaurant takes up next to no space, but is a great way for you to still give or receive things when you are living tiny.  Other things could be itunes music, movies, or other media.

Gift Idea: Cracking The Code – Guide to building codes and zoning for tiny houses!

cracking-the-code

 

Gifts And Living The Tiny Life

With the holiday season upon us, people get very wrapped up in the need to buy presents.   Even though I don’t need things and for the most part I don’t want for much, it’s hardwired into their brains that they have to give me something.  So today I wanted to share some of the things you can do when it comes to the gift giving season.

I think the first thing to do is long before the holiday season, share with those who might give you gifts that your lifestyle and priorities have shifted to have fewer items.  You can frame this in the context of environmentalism, reduced-consumerism, simple living, minimalism; however you do this, people are going to be curious why, so be prepared to have a conversation.  It’s important for them to understand that there is a greater purpose and/or goal behind your request, this helps gain buy in.  Now we Tiny House folks often can’t shut up about our dream Tiny House, so this isn’t usually an issue.

Next thing to do is consider the things that you really do need throughout the year, then consider if you could hold off getting it now and instead suggest it as a gift for the holidays.  A great example in my own life is work shirts.  I wear polo’s to work, but I only have 4 (I only go into an office 3 days a week), so they wear out with more frequent washings.    I was about to retire my polo’s when I realized it was getting close to the holidays and I decided to wait and ask for new shirts.

So where possible try to time things so things that you truly do need, but what about beyond that?  Being that I don’t need a whole lot, I find that there more people to exchange gifts with than I have needs.  This is where I ask for experiences or consumables.

The great thing about these two things is that they don’t take up space (or not for long).  Experiences can be having them take you out to dinner, go see a movie, a weekend vacation, go on some adventure with them, have them cook you a meal and enjoy it together.  The experience will be something that you both will value so much more than anything you can buy at the store.

The second thing is consumables.  There are items like foods, drinks, candy, etc. that you can use, but they aren’t going to have to be stored forever.  If you want to take it a step further, ask them to take into consideration the packaging of the item.

Great examples of consumables are baked goods.  If they are a wine or beer drinker, consider wine/beer of the month clubs.  If they are meat eaters some mail order steaks; for the vegetarians/vegans/raw folks consider local vendors that prepare meals to go that align with their food preferences.   Buying someone a share in a CSA (community supported agriculture).  A great place to start is with your local farmers market.

So those are just a few tips on how you might bring in the New Year and handle the gift giving season while still balancing it with living The Tiny Life.

Your Turn!

How to do you talk with other about reducing your possessions during the holiday season?

Green Gifts

Don’t stress out if you missed the opportunity to have one of the fabulous gifts from our green guides shipped in time for the holidays. There are plenty of thoughtful last-minute green gifts for everyone on your list! So whether you haven’t been able find that special something for your sister, in-laws, co-worker, or even your best friends, we have the prefect ideas that are earth friendly and easy to put together. herb planters, seeds kit, recycled cans, edible, baking, cooking ingredients gifts eco green holiday “last minute” guide 2009 diy handmade

seedsplant

1. HANDMADE SEED STARTER KIT A great gift for almost anyone on your list is handmade seed starter kit. You can customize a planter by covering or painting an aluminum can, a yogurt cup, or any other container with a bottom that can be punctured for drainage. Avocado8 has some great tips for the type of soil and seeds to use for a starter kit. To make it even more special, you may want to add a few plant markers to the kit. You can design your own, or use a template, like this one from Goldtop design. sustainable design, green design, last minute gifts, green christmas presents, eco holiday gifts, edible gifts

food

2. EDIBLE GREEN GIFT Edible gifts are a standby last-minute treat. Holiday cookies made from organic ingredients will be enjoyed by all, but if you aren’t very savvy with baking you could try something easier like spiced nuts, chocolate-covered gummy bears, or even your own fudge sauce. Green cooking tip: reusable silicon mats are great for eco-friendly baking. Another nice alternative is to create a cute package with all the ingredients and instructions needed to make a special recipe – try a chocolate cranberry cookie mix, or hot cocoa mix. sustainable design, green design, last minute gifts, green christmas presents, eco holiday gifts, vase

flower

3. RECYCLED CUSTOMIZED FLOWER VASE Giving someone flowers can be a nice last-minute gesture for the holidays, but it will be even better when you give them a bouquet in a handmade vase. You can follow these easy instructions to make one from a recycled glass bottle using glue and yarn for a simple and classy look, or for a ceramic-inspired creation try this technique using puffy paints. sustainable design, green design, last minute gifts, green christmas presents, eco holiday gifts, DIY sketchbook

book

4. A PERSONALIZED SKETCHBOOK OR NOTEPAD Another easy gift is to make vintage-inspired notepads or sketchbooks with 100% recycled paper. You can use a thrift store book cover, or make your own cover by wrapping a sheet of cardboard with a newspaper, fabric or even paint chip samples. Don’t worry; there are online tutorials that will help you with the binding techniques. digital gifts, online gifts, sustainable design, green design, last minute gifts, green christmas presents, eco holiday gifts,

digital

5. DIGITAL GIFTS Go digital with your last-minute gifts this year. For musical friends, gift them a custom playlist you made with iTunes, or send them a gift card for Amazon’s mp3s. For literary types, buy them a digital book for their kindle, or a subscription to a digital magazine or newspaper from Zinio. Photo junkies will love it when you buy them a pro account on Flickr, so they can organize and share all their photos online. sustainable design, green design, last minute gifts, green christmas presents, eco holiday gifts, gifts of time

time

6. GIFTS OF TIME A last-minute holiday present that is net-zero and consumerism-free is to give the gift of your time. You can make coupons using holiday letterpress cards, like these eco-friendly sustainably harvested yellow birch cards from Night Owl Paper Goods. Some ideas for coupon themes: offer to do an eco-friendly house cleaning, laundry duties for a month with natural detergents, prepare an organic meal, or offer to paint a room with low-VOC paints. For more great gifts ideas, be sure to check out our Gifts of Time Guide.

Reprinted: Inhabitat 12-2009