Sunday, December 5, 2010

Eco-Libris green holiday guide: Green gifts for book lovers under $25

If you're looking for holiday gifts for people who are avid readers that will be both eco-friendly and affordable (let's say no more than $25), we've got some great ideas for you!

No, this is not your usual guide with recommendations on "green" books like we used to have in the last couple of years (if you want some ideas for such books check our green books campaign), but rather a holiday guide with some creative idea we thought were worth recommending on. To make sure your gift will be fully appreciated, we divided it to 10 types of book lovers and we hope it will help you in finding your perfect gift!

Last but not list,
as you will see, most of these gifts are provided by friends and partners of Eco-Libris so we might not be very objective, but at the same time we know these bookstores, publishers and companies very well, so we feel very confident to recommend on their products. And so without further ado, here's our green holiday guide to book lovers:

1. For the book lovers who like shopping

Strand's tote bag designed by Adrian Tomine (Strand Bookstore, $12.95)

Strand Bookstore is a great
independent bookstore and is famous not only for its outstanding variety of books but also in their artists series totes, providing some great options for people who want to do shopping with something more than just the regular doll reusable shopping bag.

More about this shopping bag: The Strand is breaking new ground with the latest tote bag in our artist series, which is designed by famed graphic novelist Adrian Tomine. He's drawn us the many faces of Strand customers, and there are different people depicted on each side of the bag. Plus, our oval logo has been replaced by a multi-hued staggered-lettered STRAND mixed among the faces. Maybe the coolest bag we've ever done!

2. For the book lovers who will appreciate something different

Pachyderm Paper Book
(Mr. Ellie Pooh, $15)

And what can be more different than a beautiful paper book made of elephant poo?

More about this paper book: These eleph
ant dung paper journals have a kraft colored poo paper inside with covers that vary in color and design. Each notebook is embellished with authentic kitle bark binding. Elephants love eating kitle bark. They are 6" x 7.5" with ~60 pages. The items are 100% handmade 50% elephant poo, 50% post consumer. The paper in each book is naturally textured and acid free. These elephant dung paper books are great gift items for the elephant lover as well as the journal collector. Great for the little ones too. Quite sturdy.

3. For the book lovers who like to take notes

Recycled Notebook
(Modern Paper Goods, $3.99)

Yes, some book lovers like to take notes, whether it's a shopping list to the next visit in their local bookstore or just some thoughts they have while reading a good book. This notebook is a
really beautiful and useful gift, and you have many more magnificent designs of notebooks made of recycled paper to choose from. Here's more about this notebook: Everyone's all abuzz about the lush new note

books by talented artist Fiona Richards. Made with 100% recycled paper & printed with soy inks, they are environmentally friendly & perfect for any task: whether you use them to take notes in the office or for to-do lists, Cartolina's trademark vivid palette & intricate designs will brighten your day. Each notebook contains approximately 30 unlined pages; the outer cover is made of a slightly rigid, uncoated coverstock. Its construction makes it resilient for long-term use, yet light enough to tote around in a small purse.

4. For book lovers who like to get books in the library but are too lazy to get there

1-Month membership at BookSwim
(BookSwim, $0)

BookSwim is America's most-gifted book rental service, delivers UNLIMITED books "Netflix®-style" by mail with no due dates, no late fees, and free shipping both ways! Now they offer a free 1-month trial for
3 Books In Circulation Unlimited! Send back 2 books, hold 1 book. Receive 2 more Unlimited rentals! This is a great gift at zero costs (after the free month, the monthly fee is $23.95 for this plan) and it also includes free shipping. Could it get any better?

5. For book lovers who are happy to share good books to other readers

Starter Kit for 25 Books
(BookCrossing, $14.95) is a great place for book lovers. BookCrossing, according to wikipedia, is defined as "the practice of leaving a book in a
public place to be picked up and read by others, who then do likewise." The term is derived from, a free online book club which began in order to encourage the practice, aiming to connect people through books.There are currently 898,299 BookCrossers and 6,699,448 books travelling throughout 132 countries!

More about this kit: It includes 25 bookplates, sticky notes, officially official stickers and bookmarks - everything you need to get 25 books tagged and noticed! Perfect for newbies. Economical for all. Each Release Kit contains 2 3/4 x 5 1/2 inch Bookplate Labels, 3 x 4 inch International Sticky Notes, 2 x 7 inch Bookmarks for 25 books and 25 Official BookCrossing Stickers. All products are in English unless otherwise specified. Substitution products in other languages may be requested in the 'Comments' section of the order. Order extra - they make great gifts!

6. For the book lovers who prefers to choose his gift by themselves

Holiday Reindeer Gift Card
(Indigo Books & Music, $25)

Gift card is always a great option as it enables the gift reciever to choose whatever they want to buy, so you can't really go wrong. Almost any book retailer has such gift cards, but Indigo is the only one that actually provides information online and though in-store kiosk that allows consumers to make informed decisions about where the paper content of their book comes from.

Rudolph comes to life (with a little 3D magic) in this unique gift card! And watch as his metallic red nose shines with the holiday spirit. This $25 gift card can be used to buy books, CDs, DVDs and much more in any Indigo, Chapters, Coles or World’s …+ read moreRudolph comes to life (with a little 3D magic) in this unique gift card! And watch as his metallic red nose shines with the holiday spirit. This $25 gift card can be used to buy books, CDs, DVDs and much more in any Indigo, Chapters, Coles or World’s Biggest Bookstore across Canada or online at When you order a gift card it will be shipped in a note card which can be personalized during checkout. You can also send an Electronic Gift Certificate in the same value via email.

7. For the book lovers that use the Kindle

Belkin Grip Kindle Sleeve (Fits 6" Display), Perfect Plum
(Belkin, $24.99)

As we mentioned earlier, we believe that among e-readers (not including iPad) Amazon's Kindle is the greenest option. Now, if you want to make it even greener, this cool sleeve is a great gift, as it will help to keep the Kindle safe and operational for a long time and hence reduce the chances it will be replaced and thrown away any time soon.

More about the Kindle sleeve: Featuring a Perfect Plum color scheme, Belkin's Grip Sleeve (Fits 6" Display, Latest Generation Kindle) is designed to protect your Amazon latest generation Kindle, so you can safely take it with you wherever you go. The Grip Sleeve offers a sleek, contemporary style and a custom fit with a secure zipper closure. Made of durable neoprene and silicone, the sleeve also has a soft lining that helps to protect your device from scratches.

8. For book lovers that would enjoy helping a new (animated e-) book created

Supporting the creating of TERMINALLY ILLIN': World's Awesomest Cancer Comic Book!
(Kickstarter, $20)

Kickstarter is a great website that provides you the opportunity to help funding creative projects from the worlds of
music, film, art, technology, design, food, publishing and other creative fields that needs this funding. This is not about investment or lending. Project creators keep 100% ownership and control over their work. Instead, they offer products and experiences that are unique to each project. In this case, Kaylin Marie and Jon Solo ask you to be a part in helping them bring an amazing illustrated story to life! Slightly cynical, slightly irreverent, and REALLY hilarious, "Terminally Illin" is a candid look into the life of a young adult battling cancer, but with a psychedelic-sci-fi twist! It's more than a comic book: It's provocative, educational, entertaining, and totally original.

Here, the added value is more social than environmental (besides being able to support a project of a young artist) - For every comic book sold, they will give one to a cancer patient.
They are looking to raise $8,500. They already got $1,340 and 46 days to get the rest. $20 pledge will give the person you're giving this gift the following: a custom BUTTON, MAGNET, or STICKER. *PLUS* they'll email you a PDF file of the entire comic book that you can read from any electronic device and AUTOGRAPHED COMIC BOOK, with your name published on our thank you page! And just remember that if he won't raise all the money, you will get your money back.

9. For book lovers who are interested in reducing their footprint (and like to laugh)

Jeff Garlin's audiobook: My Footprint: Carrying the Weight of the World
(Simon & Schuster Audio, CD- $22.79, download - $7.49)

How can anyone not like Jeff Garlin? He is a really funny guy and if you watch Curb Your Enthusiasm you know what I'm talking about. But besides being a comedian, he's also a serious guy and in August 2008 he decided to set up an impressive goal: Reducing both his physical and carbon footprint. His journey is documented in an audiobook released by Simon & Simon Audio: My Footprint: Carrying the Weight of the World.

Now this is the time to say something about the audiobook format. I believe 'My Footprint' is one of the cases where the advantages of hearing a story in this format are so obvious. Garlin is telling the story (he's reading it to Leonard Nimoy by the way) and as a comedian he knows to tell a story. Listening to this audiobook, I found myself laughing again and again, and I had this magical feeling I'm attending one of Garlin's comedy sets at the Comedy Store in West Hollywood.

One more word about audiobooks -
we believe they represent one of the options to read books sustainably, especially when you download them - an option that represents right now about 21% of all sales (the rest are CDs). Here you can both purchase it as a CD ($22.79) or download it ($7.49).

10. For book lovers who will be happy to get some trees planted on their behalf

Balancing out 10 books by planting 10 trees + 10 stickers + beautiful holiday greeting card (Eco-Libris, $11.50)

Yes, this is a sort of self-promotion, but we thought it's also a nice option of an affordable eco-friendly gift, so why not mentioning it in our own guide?

So here's our holiday gift offer for you: Plant trees to balance out the books your loved ones read. We will send them a beautiful holiday card and Eco-Libris stickers to display on their books’ sleeves. Just change the shipping address on the PayPal payment page to the address of the gift receiver (or send us a separate email to with the details) and we will take care of the rest! If you're buying books as gifts, you can also add the stickers and the card, making it a great green gift.

The holiday greeting cards we send are made by
Doodle Greetings (see picture above). Not only these cards come with a beautiful design, but they are also eco-friendly - printed on 100% post-consumer recycled paper and are made chlorine-free and acid free. This is a good fit with Eco-Libris stickers, which are also made of recycled paper!

This is also very affordable gift offer, starting from $6.50 for 5 trees/stickers and a holiday gift card! $25, which is the maximum cost of the gifts on this guide will get you 25 trees and stickers with the beautiful holiday gift card. Interested? go to our holidays gift page and check it out.

If you have more ideas, please feel free to comment and share them with us!

Happy Holidays,
Raz @ Eco-Libris

Eco-Libris: Promoting sustainable reading!