Give unique upcycled gifts this holiday

Hipcycle logoWith holiday-related “to do’s” dancing in our heads, the scurrying and worrying has begun. What to get for family members who are impossible to buy for? Where to find classy or unique gift for your husband, wife or that special someone?

If you want to be more green with this year’s gifts, check out, one of the leading online retailers for upcycled items.

The term “upcycled” was coined in 2002 by William McDonaugh & Michael Braungart for their book  Cradle to Cradle: Remaking the Way We Make Things. Upcycling is the process of converting a material into something of similar or greater value, to a second life – using waste materials to create “new” useful products.

Upcycled Woven Tin Bracelet - Hipcycle

Each Upcycled Woven Tin Bracelet is a one-of-a-kind

It’s been called a greener way of recycling. Upcycling generally requires less energy than recycling, keeps materials once considered waste from going into landfills and reduces the need  to manufacture new products .

I’ve written about upcycling in the past in reference to TerraCycle and its take-back Brigades and Upcycle the Gyres, which is working to upcycle ocean plastic debris into diesel, gasoline, and kerosene.

Add Hipcycle to the ranks of these organizations.

Launched in spring 2011 by founder Andrew Sell, Hipcycle takes Reduce-Reuse-Recycle – the new 3 R’s – to the next level. It faces the global waste issue head-on, offering attractive, durable, fairly priced upcycled items – “alternatives to traditional home decor, jewelry and fashion as a way to reduce global waste.”

This Wine Bottle Cheese Platter would make a unique gift

This Wine Bottle Cheese Platter would make a unique gift

Browsing through their website sparks the imagination, with so many fun, creative and unique products. There are handsome clocks made from bicycle or old computer parts, colorful woven baskets made from woven plastic bags and lovely hanging jewelry racks made from reclaimed pallet wood. Amidst the furniture, housewares, school and office and garden items, here are some of my favorite holiday gift suggestions.

For a great hostess gift or to give a touch of elegance, check out the Woven Metal Napkin Rings. Made from pre-consumer waste tin, these colorful and stylish rings will add style to any dinner table. A set of 4 is only $19.00.

Another nice home addition is the Wine Bottle Cheese Platter. A word of caution: they aren’t meant to be used as cutting boards. These reclaimed wine bottles make both a unique gift and a great conversation piece! Available in four colors, they’re only $16.00

The Three Olives pendant comes in two beautiful styles

The Three Olives pendant comes in two beautiful styles

Hipcycle also has some fun jewelry. Any woman would love wearing the Woven Tin Bracelet. Made from reclaimed woven tin, each beautiful cuff bracelet is one-of-a-kind. Some feature colorful diagonal weaves, others have straight horizontal and vertical patterns. These lovely bracelets are only $16.00 each.

If your special someone loves necklaces, check out the Three Olives Glass pendant. Each one is cut from upcycled Three Olives Vodka bottles and the pendants, which are hand polished, are available in two styles. Truly a work of art, each pendant is only $22.00 each.

Hipcycle offers so many fun ideas for holiday gifting, the final decisions may be tough to make. But enjoy and spend some time at

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