Wednesday, October 1, 2014

2014 Holiday Gift Guide

The First Annual GlassDharma Holiday Gift Guide is Here! 

Gifts for all ages from ($5.00 - $50.00)

GlassDharma finds ways to encourage us all to reduce our footprint by sharing ideas and products that help us (and each other) proceed toward a zero waste lifestyle. We want to share what we have discovered along the way! As each of us uses our purchasing power to show manufacturers what we want, we collectively make a difference toward sustainable living for a healthier planet. 

Gifting is a powerful element to inspire others with our choice of gifts and introduce our family and friends to solutions that demonstrate that avoidance of single-use plastic alternatives is possible and desirable. There are alternatives! Discovering that the concept of choosing reusable products is gaining popularity shows that sharing our solutions with others can help speed up the process of this trend, resulting in the increased reduction of our collective trash footprint.

So here it is, just in time for the gift giving season! Our first annual gift guide for 2014! We list gifts that are priced from $5.00 to under $50.00. Please consider your purchasing and gifting power - together, we make a difference!

stainless steel bottle, sports bottle, non toxic, eco, cork
The Gift of a reusable water bottle, for teens and adults: Klean Kanteen offers a new "Reflect" 18oz. water bottle. ($29.95)  Our Klean Kanteen bottles have lasted (and withstood a lot of throwing around and general abuse) over the years and are by far the sturdiest stainless steel bottles we have found! Check out the new Reflect bottles offered in 2 sizes. We prefer the  18 oz. because it is easier to carry around than the larger version. It is made of top quality stainless steel, bamboo, and food grade silicone.  That's it! No paint or plastic on this bottle that is made to last. Check out their other products on the site for child size options as well. You will find that all of their products have this same committed integrity toward sustainability.  

Camelbak, sports bottle, drink bottle, glass straw, straw inserts, glassdharma
The Camelbak Sports bottle called the Glass"Eddy" was an overnight sensation. ($32.00)  Many Camelbak customers began asking GlassDharma to retrofit glass straw inserts to replace the plastic parts. GlassDharma now sells a CamelBak Pakwith 2 inserts - one uptake straw + one mouthpiece insert for the Glass"Eddy" on the Underground menu. ($12.00)
The Camelbak Glass Eddy and the GlassDharma retrofit set make an excellent gift for those who love drinking from glass and like the convenience of a sports bottle. The straw inserts may also be purchased separately on the GlassDharma website. 
retap, bottle, glass bottle, drink bottle, glass, silicone
ReTap - There is a new glass bottle in town! has the glass ReTap Bottles in stock. ($12.00 - $23.00)  These bottles are simply elegant!  Designed in Denmark, these bottles have an interior that consists of a super sleek inner surface interior that resists the buildup of water deposits and bacteria growth. They are made of Borosilicate glass to resist breakage and come with an easy to use, leak proof silicone cap. They are simply beautiful!  Available in 3 sizes, these bottles are smooth, light weight, and beautiful.  See the video for more!  

While we are on the subject of travel drink-ware, there are a lot of cute ideas that include assembling components like lids, straws, and jars to make a gift for that person that is always on the go. Some are filled with "goodies" like dried fruit or candy which make a fun presentation. We have been checking out a lot of these "gift components" and we want to include what we have found in this guide.

ecojarz, stainless steel, lids, jar lids, drink jar lidsEcoJarz Stainless pack of three small mouth Stainless Steel Drink Jar Lids($19.99) We discovered that the GlassDharma Coffee Straws  for $7.50 were the only glass straws in our inventory that would fit into the drink holes of these lids. Now we manufacture an 8mm Glass Straw just for EcoJarz $10.95 that perfectly fits these EcoJarz lids and you can find them on the EcoJarz website as well as stores and websites many of EcoJarz's resellers. These lids do not include the jar bands needed to screw them tightly onto the jar, but any jar bands will fit them securely due to the silicone ring around the lid that prevents any leakage. Now you can make any of your Mason Jars into travel friendly drink vessels! These drink jars make a perfect non-toxic option for travel drink-ware and we found that our own GlassDharma coffee straws will work well in the stainless steel lids as well as the 8mm straws.

Another of our favorite lids by EcoJarz is their Silicone Drink Jar Lid offered in small mouth and large mouth sizes. ($8.95 to $9.95)  We figured out right away that the drink hole is flexible enough to accommodate the 9.5mm GlassDharma straw (with a super tight fit). The advantage?  Absolutely no straw rattling against the side of the glass jar no matter how bumpy a ride you are on in your auto, boat, or on your bike! The snug fit of the straw in the drink hole keeps the beverage from spilling out around the straw. Like the stainless steel lids, these lids will fit all standard jars, you just need to specify "large mouth" or "small mouth" sizes.  Do not forget to purchase some standard jar bands to connect them onto your jar or you can buy them on the EcoJarz website as well.
pint and a half jars, ball jars, mason jars, drink jars
Our favorite jars for a super size travel drinks are the Ball brand Pint and a Half wide mouth. ($12.99) Sold in a case of 9 at Bed, Bath and Beyond, these jars hold an extra large beverage serving and fit in most travel cup holders! These jars work well with GlassDharma 9 and 10 inch length glass straws.

Mason Jar makes a Re-cap, pour spout lid for canning jars ($7.00) This lid has an opening that will accommodate GlassDharma's widest straws, the smoothie straws and the bubble tea straws. The lids are available in different colors. For more about these lids, see this video!

weck jars, glass straws, GlassDharma, quarter liter jars
Weck Jars might be your favorite drink glasses!  These jars that come in unique shapes and sizes are awesome for food storage and canning but many never get past our cabinet for drinking glasses! The half liter or quarter liter jar with the curvy shape are available at Mighty Nest.  ($5.25 & $6.95) These are wonderful for water, lemonade, and iced tea. The quarter liter size make the cutest juice glasses.  All of the Weck Jars come with glass lids and rubber gaskets with two stainless steel clips that create a perfect seal for using these as canning jars. Simply remove the lids and you will love the way the glass straws work with these jars! Our company will often choose this style jar over other types of glassware when offered a choice.

bodum, earth day straw, glassdharma, glass straw

Bodum Glassware: We love the size and shape of the 8.2 oz. Pavina glasses that come in a pair. ($14.00) at are also available as a pair of 12 oz. glasses. ($16.00)  These are perfect for juice, wine and cocktails.  The shape and feel of the smooth glass will have you reaching for these glasses repeatedly. Made of borosilicate glass, they are light weight with very thin glass creating the double walls which keeps the temperature of your beverage constant, hot or cold.  We love these glasses to serve hot tea and even wine!

sipping stones, the handy house, drink, beverageSipping Stones. ($9.99) These stones are for cooling beverages in the glass and are available at The Handy While on the subject of drinks - you must try these cute little "sipping stones" offered by The Handy House!  Made of natural soapstone, you simply put them in the freezer then use to chill your whiskey, white wine, cocktails or mocktails without ever diluting the contents of the drink!  The set of 9 stones is enough for 2 drinks and the size is perfect for most drinkware.

Stainless Steel Ice Tray. makes this non-toxic and sturdy ice cube tray available. ($32.00) This is a gift built to last for generations. (unlike your grandmother's aluminum version). You will avoid BPA and other toxins using this tray for freezing juices and foods and this is the ultimate plastic alternative for all ice making! 

stainless steel ice cube tray, ice tray, glass straw

Set of three Bamboo Cutting Boards at the Wild Mint Shop($20.00) These cutting boards are the classic "must have" for all kitchens and cooks! The hard Bamboo is the perfect sustainable choice for performance and they look great on any counter. They are slim and light weight, so they are easy to clean and store in between uses. The three different sizes are handy for all kinds of uses including doubling as a trivet for hot pots on counter. If you have any cooks to buy for, novice or professional, this is a gift that will be used and appreciated for years to come.  

cloth napkins, birch print napkins, organic cotton dinner napkins
Organic Cotton Dinner Napkins
Cloth napkins and towels: Cloth vs. Paper or plastic is not just about
your shopping bags! Quality cloth napkins are a staple in our households. We do not buy paper napkins anymore and we do not even like the way they feel! Buying quality cloth napkins and dishtowels makes a lovely gift. Gail, co-owner of GlassDharma, likes to wrap presents with pretty dish towels. So many people just do not buy themselves nice cloth items but love having and using them! We keep stacks of clean cloth napkins on the kitchen table as well as on the patio table, handy for guests who need to be encouraged to use them as they look around for the paper napkins. It is really no bother to wash up a load of table cloths, dish towels and cloth napkins each week to keep this sustainable practice in your own home. Beautiful, quality linens will encourage this practice!

  • Check out this set of 2 cloth napkins in a cloth sac ($10.00) This 3 piece set by ECOLunchBox makes a cute gift for those who take a lunch to work or school.  The sack can be used to pack some nuts or dried fruit as well. Keep this handy set in the car for spills!
  • Mighty Nest offers the Full Circle brand of bamboo and organic cotton dish towels. ($4.99 each)  The waffle texture helps to wipe surfaces efficiently.  The 70%  bamboo fabric has natural anti-bacterial properties. These towels are lovely, absorbent, and will last many years! 
  • We love the simple grace of the birch tree screen print on these Organic cotton dinner napkins also offered by Mighty Nest , set of four. ($28.00)  These napkins will look good with any color scheme of table linens; they are white with black outlines of trees.
String Market Bags ($8.49) by - no one can have too many of these!  Plastic bag bans are current and trending and it's time to find a convenient solution to grocery shopping.  These string bags are made of natural cotton and are available in 14 colors.  They are easy to store in small places to have handy when you need them.  These bags can fit many odd shaped contents, from groceries to toys to housewares and hold up to 40 lbs! They are perfect for produce like apples, oranges, onions and potatoes, these bags withstand daily use and are machine washable.  Make sure everyone on your gift list gets one of these bags!

glass straw, decorative dots, hemp sleeve, cleaning brushReusable Straw - The gift of a glass straw, a hemp sleeve (to carry your straw) and a cleaning brush will encourage the recipient to use and take the straw with them when on the go! The gift shown is a from ($31.00) Organic Cotton/Rayon/Denim "Family Packs" are available to carry 4 straws or your straws and other utensils. ($29.00)  Glass Straw Sets of 4 make excellent gifts for any occasion: Weddings, Birthdays, Holidays and they make wonderful Hostess Gifts! ($28.00 - $48.00) Each set comes with a cleaning brush!

Berry Breeze - ($49.95) on the Berry Breeze website. This kitchen appliance may seem to be an odd gift, but when Cheryl received her Berry Breeze for her birthday last year, it took her about 2 months to appreciate the performance of this food saving unit. With Berry Breeze, your food in your fridge remains fresh about 3 times as long and there is absolutely no odor when you open your refrigerator, even when it is packed with  strong smelling foods! This compact unit oxygenates the air in your entire refrigerator. It takes 4 D batteries to perform and our batteries lasted well over seven months, though the company claims they will last over three months. Check out the video below for a product review from The Grommet!

stainless steel plates. camping plates, plates, eco, sustainable
EcoLunchBoxes offers the coolest, 3 section Stainless Steel Plates($15.00) each. These are David and Gail's favorite picnic, potluck, and camping plates! They are sturdy, yet light weight and stack easily for travel.  These plates are also attractive and super easy to clean. David and Gail receive many compliments from others at the campgrounds as they use these for almost every meal.
note:  David Leonhardt and Gail Johnson are the owners of GlassDharma.

eco lunchette, lunch bag, lunch box, cloth bagCheck out this awesome assortment of Stainless Steel Containers also from ECOLunchBoxes. ($25.95) This set is available at the Reuseit Store! These containers will be used (and reused) for generations.  This is a gift for the whole family!

Love, love, love the Eco Lunchette! ($30.00)  This beautiful lunch set, from ECOLunchBox is made of artisan printed cloth from India! This handy bag with a matching cloth napkin is a delightful gift for those who pack  lunch or take snacks along on outings! The bag has a zipper closure and can be laundered in your washing machine or easily spot cleaned by hand. It is the perfect size for holding your lunch items but fits easily into a larger tote or on your bicycle basket. 

Gifts that make a Splash!  
For less than $35.00 you can buy this combination of 2 gifts with a "Splash" theme!  We suggest this gift for the 8 - 12 year old, but we know many on either side of this guideline that will be delighted to receive this gift combo!
    splash box, stainless steel, silicone, lunch box, container
 The Splash Box ($22.50) at ECOLunchBox is a stainless steel leak proof container with a silicone lid.   This "take along container" fits easily in a lunch bag,  glove compartment or tote.  It is our favorite go-to container to take to restaurants for bringing home our leftovers as well as packing snacks for kids or lunches for the family.  Throw this in your picnic basket! The lid fits tight and the contents stay intact. It really does not leak when sealed properly. This makes a delightful gift for adults and kids alike!

The second part of our "Splash" combination is the new "Make a Splash!" paperback book ($11.82) - Amazon
by Cathryn BergerKayeM.A. (Author),
PhilippeCousteau (Author), 
"Make a Splash" is a beautifully illustrated book full of information and facts about water and the importance of this precious resource to our wellbeing. The authors encourage us all to take action to help protect our waterways and to preserve a healthy planet. Designated a children's book, (GlassDharma recommends this book for Junior High age) we find that many adults will learn and identify with the spirit in which this book is written.
"Plastic Free - How I Kicked The Plastic Habit and You Can Too" - (16.26) by Beth Terry at Barnes & Noble. This is a book that keeps on giving to our planet and makes a wonderful gift for the curious minded, the eco adventurer and also the person who might not realize the negative impact plastics are making on our world.  This guide helps us make choices that can change old habits while giving the reader information and ideas of how plastic free living is both doable and desirable. The book itself is even compostable!  Author Beth Terry continues to inspire through this book and her blog, My Plastic Free Life. You can buy a signed, hard cover copy of this book on Beth's blog. ($19.95) The Gift Bag Combo includes a signed copy of this book, and a DVD of the film, "Bag It" in a cloth bag. ($37.50) 

lelani, book, plastic, story book, story, kingdom
"Lelani and the Plastic Kingdom" - is now available for sale on Etsy. ($18.95) This book tells a charming story full of adventure that starts with a message in a plastic bottle that Lelani finds in the ocean.  This independently published book by Robb N. Johnston will delight readers into the fantasy of the story line as Lelani discovers the island of New Flotsam and finds that this mysterious land is made up entirely of plastic debris. There is even a plastic straw forest! The story takes the reader into adventurous plots while showing practical and real solutions to the problems at hand. The marvelous illustrations will keep the reader engaged throughout the story.  This 48 page book will make a wonderful read aloud bedtime story that may last a few nights while the readers look forward to what will happen next for Lelani and all that she encounters.  Lelani is a book that belongs in the classroom as well - a wonderful gift to an Elementary School Teacher!  We recommend this book for ages 5 to 11, but know that other ages, including adults, will most certainly love this story!

Tracy Russell from Incredible Smoothies, Author of the new print copy book "The Best Green Smoothies on the Planet", suggests that adding  green smoothies into your daily routine will help you gravitate toward a plant based diet loaded with nutritious foods as you work your way toward your own weight loss goals.  This book has all the information and recipes  that you will need to get started on your own journey toward better health using delicious smoothies!  Available now on Amazon for a special pre-order price.  ($12.94) This book will ship out on December 16. 2014 , just in time for last minute gifts! 

This Season of gifting brings so many possibilities on how to extend love and appreciation to others!  Let us know if these suggestions have helped you with ideas for buying gifts in 2014.  Please do email your own suggestions for consideration for our future Holiday Gift Guides to Cheryl Newcomb, our Community Manager. - cn (at) - or simply use the comment section of this blog post.


  1. Awesome work Cheryl and GlassDharma! I've been introduced to the other eco-friendly products in the market that I didn't know existed. Thanks for the comprehensive gift guide. :)

    1. Thank you! If you have some gift guide suggestions, please use this comment form to add yours!

  2. I love all of these gift ideas! Awesome! I especially love the sipping stones and the Stainless Steel ice tray. These will go perfect with my glass straws I already have!

    1. We hope these suggestions inspire gifts that are earth friendly and reusable. Thank you for your comment and for choosing to use reusable glass straws!

  3. Great guide. Thanks for including Plastic-Free!

    1. GlassDharma highly recommends everyone read Plastic Free! Great book and super informative as we struggle to find ways to avoid plastic in our daily routine.

  4. Fantastic gift guide - an easy way for people to choose healthy reusable gear. Thanks for including MightyNest!

    1. Mighty Nest has a wonderful inventory of goods that make great gifts and are good choices for the well being of our planet. If you might like to add a gift suggestion or two, please do in this comment forum. You can add the link as well.

  5. Hey, I can’t find there a customized bottle caps! You know this is a nice gift idea under your budget especially when you have to gift a team. In fact I bought some beautiful bottle caps designed with a nice quote from “Inspire Bottle Caps” and gifted my favorite football team. Anyway the lists are good to gift any one.

  6. What a great gift guide!! Thanks so much

  7. Wonderful, Love the fact it reduces plastic and you have fundraisers. TFS.

  8. This gives me a lot of great ideas!

  9. wow such awesome gift guides i like the Ball brand Pint which is my favorite as a gift guide.

  10. I love these glass straws. I have to buy some!

  11. Awesome gift guide. I know the people I am shopping for would be happy with any of these gifts!!

  12. i like the straw and the gifts you have eco friendly

  13. I love that you have listed some things that are not sold by you. Just shows that you truly care about limiting waste! Thank you.

  14. Thank you for offering such a wide variety of eco friendly options.