Gifts with a Conscience

It’s been a busy week at Of Cabbages and Kings with lots of exciting new things arriving in store. But what has got us really excited are three brands that are all in some way either sustainable, being mindful of their consumption, or they are ethically or socially conscious, supporting exciting forward-thinking projects here and abroad. So let’s introduce these three brands and give you the opportunity to give gifts with a conscience this Christmas.

Dove Earrings and Dove Pendant by Pivot

Pivot

Pivot are a London based jewellery brand established in 2019 by Alice Moxely. The idea behind Pivot is to give homeless people an opportunity to ‘pivot’ their lives away from homelessness through making and enterprise.

Each piece is designed by Alice and made by a homeless person living in temporary housing. The jewellery is designed to be easily assembled and put together with minimal need for specialist tools. Each maker is paid the London Living Wage and is supported through coaching, financial support and guidance. This gives part-time, flexible and meaningful employment for those who find it difficult to access, and helps create swifter pathways out of temporary accommodation.

Each piece of jewellery comes in a box marked with the individual maker’s name.

“I was homeless and hopeless. I didn’t imagine myself that I would be making jewellery and selling it in shops. Being part of Pivot has helped me mentally and has given me self confidence in working with a team and being part of a social enterprise. I remember like it was yesterday, first time walking into jewellery session. I was shy, nervous and didn’t know what to expect but with each class I have seen myself improving. I have something to look forward to in 2020 and can rewrite my life again.”

Pivot Maker – makepivot.org
Sustainable Plain A5 and A6 Notebooks by Vent for Change

Vent for Change

Vent for Change is a sustainable stationery brand based in Bristol. Founded in 2014 by environmental entrepreneur Evan Lewis, it started with just an ageing run-down facility producing pencils from recycled CD cases.

“Pencils are the most iconic educational tool going back centuries and I wanted to do something with them, something inspirational.”

Evan Lewis Founder

Evan took on months of research with NGOs and charities with a plan to help children worldwide after devastating natural and man-made disasters, especially those whose access to education had been affected.

He realised that pencils alone would not solve the problem, but what was needed was money. Money to rebuild schools, money to pay teachers and money to provide essential materials. Now Evan raises money to support children’s education projects worldwide through the sale of his stationery products.

Not only does Vent for Change support charities, but the products they make are also ethical and sustainable. They use recycled leather and board for the covers, and the paper inside 100% sustainable FSC certified.

Small and Medium Light Wooden Vase by Priormade

Priormade

Priormade is the brainchild of Beck Prior, a Bristol based design and fabrication artist. Beck creates beautiful handmade wooden products using a range of sustainable, low impact and recycled materials.

‘I want to change common opinion and highlight that responsibly designed products can be more valuable, well made and striking than those made irresponsibly.’

Beck Prior founder of Priormade

Beck’s ethos is to produce contemporary designs without compromising on sustainability or quality. Her laminated designs are produced from layers of sustainable and responsibly sourced plywood that are laminated together with a water based adhesive. No waste is created during the making process and all offcuts are used or donated to a ‘reusable waste’ charity.

The vases are produced from reclaimed wood from dedicated wood recycling projects. This makes them all unique and each piece of wood has an interesting back story. The small vases were once part of Battersea Power Station roof!

For more sustainable gift ideas check out our Sustainable Gift Guide.

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Postable Gifts

This year’s festive season might be a little bit different to usual. But while friends and family may be spending time apart we can still send a card or gift, however small, to let our loved ones know we’re thinking of them. Of Cabbages and Kings presents a selection of our smallest, most easily postable gifts, many of which will fit into a standard envelope. So grab a book of stamps and get posting gifts this year!

Stuart Gardiner has designed a selection of informative and interesting tea towels that explore topics such as Wine Pairings and Breads of the World. Not only are they useful in the kitchen, but they also contain a whole host of trivia and fun facts like the origins of the worlds sparkling wines or how to spell whisky, or should that be whiskey? Whatever their favourite food or tipple there is bound to be a towel to make a perfect match.

Made in the UK from ethically-sourced premium cotton and measuring. 480mm x 760mm.

Featured here are:

Shop all the Tea Towel designs.

Trying to encourage a friend or family member to be more sustainable this year? These Pretty Bee Fresh Beeswax Wraps are a great place to start. Small enough to fit into a greetings card, but a really useful addition to the kitchen. Made by hand in London they make a great alternative to plastic wraps and can be used again and again.

Measuring 260mm x 260mm and made from 100% pure cotton, organic jojoba oil, pine resin and beeswax from local bees.

Shop all the Beeswax Wrap designs – £8 each

Staying with a sustainable theme are Ola’s Organic Cotton Wraps. Not only are these wraps a great reusable way of wrapping gifts, they also make nice gifts themselves. Ola were inspired by the ancient Japanese art of Furoshiki, which is used for wrapping and transporting items. With this idea in mind Ola applied their trademark contemporary patterns to this selection of wraps. The receiver can use them to wrap their own gifts and pass them on, or find other uses about the home such as a napkin or to wrap a packed lunch.

Measuring 500mm x 500mm from organic cotton in collaboration with a social enterprise whose aim is to create sustainable livelihoods for rural women.

From left to right:

These Design Stencils are great gifts for both adults and children. Covering Art Nouveau, Art Deco and Bauhaus art movements, they allow you to create endless combinations of lines and text in some of the worlds most recognisable art styles. Use them to create your own stationery or greetings cards. What’s even better is they are flat and fit perfectly through the letter box.

Made from brass, the packaging measures 225mm x 160mm.

Do you know an avid reader? Well what every reader needs, be it fiction or non fiction, is a bookmark. This series of Bookmark Clips from Another Studio are a great little gift to slip into a card. With various themes such as London Buildings, Winged Insects, Houseplants and British Writers there is guaranteed to be a clip for even the most discerning of reader.

Made from laser etched steel.

This cheeky collection of brass ornaments are designed to nestle in among your houseplants. A great little gift for a plant lover to jazz up their prized specimen. They could even be used to decorate a Christmas tree – a fun alternative to traditional decorations.

Made from laser etched brass.

Another one for the nature lovers and a great gift to accompany a gardening book perhaps? These Leaf Bookmarks come in Brass and Steel and are a stylish way to mark a page.

Our ever popular City Maps are the perfect gift for lovers of the urban jungle. Flat, light and easy to pop into an envelope. These fold out city maps look at Brutalism, Art Deco, London Underground Architecture, Great Trees and many more. Inspire an adventure or feed a passion for city living.

The map opens to 420mm x 600mm (slightly larger than A2) and folds down to 210mm x 150mm (slightly larger than A5) and is protected by a band.

Shop the whole range of city maps.

Little books that are easy to send and interesting reads are always welcome. The Urban Forager is a fascinating look at what is edible in the city. Measuring 156mm x 109mm it’s the perfect pocket guide to take along on a walk. Organised seasonally with 32 recipes, you will be surprised at the everyday things you can cook and eat.

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Inspired by Architecture

We have seen recently a lot of design trends taking inspiration from architecture. Two styles that have proven popular are art deco and brutalism. Both rely on strong bold lines and confident use of graphic shapes, along with a creative approach to materials. The shapes and details that go into characterising these artistic movements are drawn upon by designers and makers, infusing their pieces, be it prints, jewellery or stationery with a unique twist or contemporary edge on a familiar style.

ART DECO

Art deco is a style of visual arts that originated in the 1920’s and developed into a major art movement across Europe and America. Influencing architecture, furniture, jewellery, fashion and cars, its aim was to be modern, with an anti-traditional elegance. Often simple and very graphic, with bold streamlined shapes, it is strong, powerful and celebrates modern materials.

Metro by artist Chris Homer is an abstract composition of screen printed gold, grey and black in a striking halftone and geometric pattern. The strong graphic style of Chris Homer’s work has a very modern feel, but still with an air of art deco elegance.

Brass and Bold are a London based brand founded by designer Elsa Gomez. Her designs are made from raw brass and painted brass, and explore the simplicity and honesty of materials. Taking inspiration from the clean lines and contrasting colour of the art deco movement, she produces stylish and contemporary jewellery perfect for your next cocktail party!

 

The 1920’s style of art deco is characterised by bold lines, shapes, and angles. You too can recreate that look, with this handy Art Deco Design Stencil. The art deco inspired typeface and shapes are perfect for all craft projects, such as card making, scrap-booking or just illustrating your favourite notebooks. A great gift for tweens to adults.

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City guides are aimed at the ‘urban explorer’. This two-sided folding Art Deco London Map features over seventy leading examples of art deco architecture in London – from Eltham Palace to the Hoover Building. Art deco landmarks such as Broadcasting House, 55 Broadway, and Senate House are included along with Charles Holden’s finest Underground Stations and more. The reverse side of the map features an introduction to art deco by Henrietta Billings, photos by Simon Phipps and details about each building.

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Achieve a modern look with echos of a geometric art deco style. These brass Pineapple Pots and steel Convert Vases are ideal for adding a metallic touch to an interior. Made from a thin sheet of metal which is carefully folded and converted into shape by hand at Another Studio in London, the Pineapple Pots are perfect for holding a small succulent or cacti.

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BRUTALISM

The mid-century architectural style of brutalism divides opinion. Descending from modern architecture it is characterised by monolithic block-like shapes, often celebrating the rawness of material, especially concrete. It is heavy, stark and solid.

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There are many examples of brutalist architecture in London and one notable building is The Hayward Gallery on the Southbank. Sitting along the banks of the River Thames it forms part of the Southbank Centre. The Hayward has become a brutalist landmark and artist Will Clarke has captured it beautifully in his detailed illustration. It is screen printed in two colours, a combination of black lines with luscious gold ink elements.

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Tom Pigeon is a creative studio founded by Pete and Kirsty Thomas in 2014. Designing simple and well-considered products across accessories, prints, and stationery.

Among these is the Béton range of jewellery – a unique unisex collection from Tom Pigeon Studio. Popularised by Le Corbusier, the term béton originates from the French ‘béton brut’ or ‘raw concrete’ and this hand-crafted solid silver jewellery is influenced by the strong lines, hidden angles, and sharp shadows of brutalist concrete architecture. Its matt finish also gives a nod to the rough texture of raw concrete.

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Produced to scale (5000 times smaller than the real buildings!) this bookmark set from Another Studio celebrates four fantastic London brutalist buildings: Trellick Tower, Barbican Tower, Space House, and National Theatre. A great gift for every architecture lover and perfect for a Secret Santa or quick stocking filler.

Fans of the movement will certainly love this Brutalist Calendar 2020. A limited edition monthly celebration of some of the most awe-inspiring and influential examples of brutalist architecture from around the world, it will provide connoisseurs of concrete with twelve months of brutalist bliss!⁠⠀

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For those brutalist adventurers who are keen to explore these pick-me-up maps are ideal. Also featured in the range are Washington, Paris, Sydney, and London.

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The Christmas Market 2013

Here are a few photographs from the big event. There were a lot of activities going on across London that weekend, particularly on the Saturday, and Sunday’s dreary wet weather left a lot to be desired. Regardless of this however, keen shoppers turned out in their hundreds to support our designers and makers and to gather their Christmas gifts. The hall looked proper festive (I think the paper chains just about held out to the last!) and thanks to the welcoming smiles and cheery chatter from the stall holders, a warm and buzzing, Christmassy atmosphere rang throughout.

Every so often on the Saturday, the chatter would stop, while London Acapella Choir Time At The Bar sang us a few festive numbers from their Christmas repertoire.

There was a sausage roll shortage on the Saturday, but a fried egg sandwich breakfast for the stallholders on the Sunday was an out-and-out winner. Well done Team!

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Tematrilla

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Bobbin & Bow

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Hanna Melin

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Jane De Bono

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De Ja Ooh

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Parasite Ceramics

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TickTackToe