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The holiday season is officially upon us—so cue the shopping anxiety! Coming up with the perfect gift for everyone on your list is stressful enough; for conscientious consumers, that task can feel even more difficult. Big box stores and online retailers lure us in with the promise of free shipping, discounts and deals—but it’s hard to get into the spirit of the season when you’re spending your money on generic gifts from corporate giants. If you’re looking to cross off your Christmast list with unique gifts from intentional companies, may we recommend shopping Native this year?
To take the guesswork out of gifting, we put together a gift guide featuring top-notch selections from some incredible Native-owned businesses. Whether you’re shopping for friends, the kids in your life, or that parent who always says “Oh, don’t get me anything; I already have everything I need,” we’ve got you covered!
We believe you can never have too many cozy blankets and pillows in your life! Home textiles are both practical and beautiful, plus they make great gifts. If you’re looking for creature comforts to gift this season, Eighth Generation offers a large selection of Native-designed blankets, including those in our Gold Label line made right here in our Seattle studio. With a wide array of colors, designs, and themes, you’ll have no problem finding the perfect match for your loved one.
Eighth Generation’s own Renewal Wool Blanket, designed by Sarah Agaton Howes (Anishinaabe) features a design in the Ojibwe woodlands floral tradition that tells the story of physical and spiritual renewal. This blanket is large enough to cover the top of a queen bed—perfect for two to snuggle up on cold nights, rest, and experience some of that physical renewal for themselves.
Renewal Wool Blanket from Eighth Generation, $225
Tote bags make versatile gifts. They can function as a purse, a carry-on catch-all for air travel, or even an upscale grocery bag. Whatever your loved ones are toting around, they’ll look extra chic doing it with the To Carry Sweet Things Tote from Mahota Textiles. Founded by an all-woman team of Chickasaw artisans, Mahota Textiles features a range of home textiles such as blankets and throw pillows featuring Southeastern tribal designs. The To Carry Sweet Things design was inspired by the ceremonial, medicinal, and everyday use of sweetgrass in many Native cultures.
The snappy dressers on your list will love catching everyone’s eye when they strut their stuffin the Satin Color Block Midi Skirt from B. Yellowtail. Designed by Bethany Yellow (Northern Cheyenne/Crow), this midi skirt features the Medicine Wheel color block and would look great paired with a turtleneck sweater and boots.
Satin Color Block Midi Skirt from B. Yellowtail, $175
Beauty products are another category that packs the one-two punch of being both fun and functional. If you have a friend or family member who’s always trying out the latest cosmetic trends, check out Cheekbone Beauty, founded by Jenn Harper (Anishinaabe). Cheekbone Beauty’s mission is to help every Indigenous person, especially youth, see their value in the world—but you don’t have to be Indigenous to enjoy the brand’s cruelty-free, vegan beauty products!
Winter Stories gift set from Cheekbone, $53
Inspired by the magic of Indigenous storytelling, Cheekbone Beauty’s limited-edition Winter Stories gift set features an illuminating primer stick and lip shimmer, perfect for the beauty guru on your list.
We all have a coffee addict or two in our lives (not counting ourselves, of course). Instead of scooping up a bag of a boring storebrand blend this year, check out Birch Bark Coffee Company instead. In addition to being First Nations-owned and -operated, the company is Simbolo de Pequeños Productores certified, which means that the coffee beans in their blends are grown and produced by farmers of Indigenous descendants in other countries. The best part of waking up is now Indigenous coffee in your cup!
Inukshuk medium-dark roast from Birch Bark Coffee, $13
The Inukshuk blend, named for the stone structures the Inuit placed in the landscape to serve as hunting and navigational aids, is a balanced coffee with a full body and notes of sweet spices, molasses and dark chocolate.
We all have that family member with stacks and stacks of books around their home. Help them add to those piles this holiday season with a subscription box from Raven Reads. It’s the gift that keeps on giving all year! Boxes ship once a quarter and include a book written by an Indigenous author along with a few gift items from Indigenous entrepreneurs and additional information about Indigenous cultures from around the world.
Raven Reads Seasonal Subscription from Raven Reads, $88
We all have that notoriously difficult-to-shop-for parent or grandparent in our lives. We get it! They already have everything they want or need—but you still have to get them something, right? For those people, upscale versions of practical, everyday items make a great gift choice.
Soap is a necessity, but when it’s elevated like Eighth Generation’s handcrafted soap it can become a luxurious gift. Made with natural ingredients and a respect for regional cultures, Eighth Generation’s Variety 4-Pack of Handcrafted Soap provides an indulgent take on the classic bar soap that will appeal to even the pickiest of people. A mix of vibrant swirling colors, each bar is a beautiful work of art worth displaying sink-side (if they don’t end up immediately in the shower!). In late November/early December, Eighth Generation is releasing our very own bath fizzies and candles, which are also the stuff of self-care dreams!
Handcrafted Soap Variety Four-Pack from Eighth Generation, $38
Shopping for the kiddos this season? Make them (and their parents) happy with a puzzle to keep both minds and hands engaged. Sacred Circle Gifts has a wonderful selection of puzzles by Native artists. Their Kids Wooden Tile Puzzles are double-sided, featuring a picture of an Indigenous animal (whale, owl, or bear) by Coast Salish artist Simone Diamond on one side and a counting puzzle on the other.
Kids Wooden Tile Puzzle in Bear design from Sacred Circle Gifts And Art, $12.50
But who says puzzles are just for kids? Sacred Circle also offers 1000-piece jigsaw puzzles featuring a design from one of the company’s Coast Salish Artist partners that the kids-at-heart on your list will enjoy putting together.
Journey of Hope 1000-piece jigsaw puzzle from Sacred Circle Gifts and Arts, $22
And what’s better than a gift that keeps its recipient engaged? One that gives back, too! All proceeds from both puzzles go toward the United Indians’ programs and services, which support the urban Native community.
You’ve hung the stockings by the chimney with care…but what are you putting in them? Don’t worry, you don’t have to expend the mental energy coming up with something beautiful and meaningful to fill those stockings because we have you covered! Eight Generation’s jewelry, enamel pins, and socks are all great accessories that don’t break the bank but make an outfit look money (are we using that Zoomer slang correctly?).
If you’re looking to support Native companies this season there’s a wide world of retailers and independent artists. As you add Native art, blankets, or other home goods to your cart online, take a few extra minutes to make sure you’re supporting an actual Native artist or business.heck out our post on Cultural Appropriation vs. Cultural Appreciation for some guidelines that can help you to make ethical shopping choices this season, and know that every purchase you make from a Native, BIPOC, and small business this holiday season truly makes a difference.
At Eighth Generation, everything we sell—from scarves and jewelry to mugs and beach towels—is designed by a Native artist, so you never have to worry about accidentally supporting cultural appropriation! Happy holidays, and thank you for supporting Inspired Natives, not “Native-inspired.”