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Thinking of giving eco-friendly gifts this year? Why not try to make something yourself?
This is the suggestion from Hilary Bruffell, co-founder of makeitandmendit.com, who noted that there is a trend towards creating homemade goods born from concerns about finances and also from a desire to be more environmentally friendly.
"Making and mending doesn't just make sustainable sense, but environmental sense and also psychological sense," she explained. "Making is good for us and can increase not only our sense of wellbeing, but our sense of control over difficult times."
"We have noticed a large rise in traffic of people wanting to find out how to do things for themselves and how they can make their money go further. Making and mending isn't just about 'making do' and getting by, but also about getting more for your money and valuing what you have."
One thing people can try is to make their own Christmas decorations or update their old ones by giving them a revamp.
"This doesn't mean that they have to look naff and horrible, [but] with a little bit of inspiration and glue you can make your house look a winter wonderland without paying a fortune," Ms Bruffell added.
But those who feel their talents do not lie with making their own presents for loved ones have plenty of other options when it comes to eco-friendly products.
The Guardian has put together a guide to green presents, from purses made of organic cotton to a recycled cork phone cover, so there are lots of things to choose from.
And if you decide to 'give green' this Christmas, you certainly won't be alone - research from the Co-operative Group last week found that sales of ethical goods and services rose by nine per cent this year, despite the ongoing tough financial climate putting a downer on people's spending patterns.
Posted by Sam Wallace