6 Upcycled Holiday Gift Ideas

With more attention being paid on every level to how brands and corporations operate, the holidays are no time to sit back and let someone else do the shopping for your most important stakeholders.

This is your time to shine!

In 2016, businesses spent $90 billion, up 17% from 2013, on non-cash incentives and the number of companies giving corporate gift is sharply rising.

The holidays are an ideal time for your brand to recognize and thank those who have helped your company over the past year.

So, what can you do to make employees and key stakeholders feel appreciated this holiday season?

The simple act of gift giving can do wonders for your brand, especially when you align corporate giving with your company’s sustainability values.

We wanted to share some of our favorite eco-friendly brands along with gifts that you can customize to make your company stand out and be remembered this holiday season!

Here are 6 holiday gift ideas from brands that will leave your employees, fans, and customers filled with joy all year long!


 photo credit: Recover Brands

photo credit: Recover Brands

Perfect for: Recover Brands has clothing for men and women. If you have clients who value the environment, take a look at what they have to offer.

About the brand: Recover Brands creates high-quality, comfortable apparel using recycled materials like polyester from plastic soda bottles and cotton from cutting floor scraps.


 photo credit: TREDAGAIN

photo credit: TREDAGAIN

Perfect for: Event companies that have clients who stay in hotels, live in warm climates, or frequent the beach or pool

About the brand: TREDAGAIN™ wants to leave a better footprint and is taking steps to change how people view waste. Everyone needs shoes so TREDAGAIN™ saw an opportunity to create a useful product by upcycling used tires into outsoles through a clean, environmentally friendly process.


 photo credit: Requip'd

photo credit: Requip'd

Perfect for: Companies that have clients who are handy in the kitchen or who simply love to BBQ

About the brand: Requip’d partners with hockey teams and manufacturers around North America to upcycle broken hockey sticks into unique, high quality BBQ sets. They are expanding into other sports including baseball and lacrosse.

Create Customizable Gifts

With bags and totes generating over 5,700 impressions, it’s not very hard to see why so many companies are turning to upcycling their branding assets to stretch their marketing budget.

Put your brand directly into the hands of your customers (or potential customers) and add customized labels to make your holiday gifts even more unique.

Makeup Bag

Perfect for: Travelers, people on the go, and make-up lovers

How to use this gift: ULTA and the Blue Man Group upcycled their banners to create unique makeup and travel bags to show their appreciation to customers and fans.

Small enough to hand out at retail locations or send in the mail, surprise your most valuable customers with a useful bag that can be taken everywhere they go.

Wine Tote

Perfect for: Wine totes make great gifts for event companies with wine-loving clients or sports brands who have fans on the go can keep their drinks cool

How to use this gift: Go above and beyond for VIP clients by filling the wine tote with something special from a local winery.

Small Cooler

Perfect for: Small coolers are gerat for tailgating sports fans, keeping drinks cold at the beach or on long car trips, and everyday use as a reusable lunch tote

How to use this gift: Jutty's Buddies, San Simeon Wines, DePauw U, and Riverbanks Zoo created small coolers to give away to event participants. Your brand can create these fun coolers for corporate events or charity fundraisers.

Relan Wrap-Up

Don’t delay! Show your customers, employees, and fans that you value their business AND the environment by sending them upcycled gifts this holiday season. If you’re interested in learning how we can help your brand show off its sustainability side, send me an email to let me know!

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    Kari Brizius is president of Relan and is a West Point Graduate, certified personal trainer, a US Army Veteran, and a wholehearted entrepreneur. Kari’s passion for the environment, the planet, and healthy living fuels her entrepreneurial spirit. Her mission is to provide thought leadership on sustainability initiatives surrounding healthy living, the environment, and sustainability messaging. Learn more about Kari here.