Christmas shopping might have taken a backseat to simply making it through the last month of a pretty unusual year. Well, just call me the Huckletree Elf: I’m here to help. I’ve delved into online stores and stock stashes across the Huckletree community in London, Manchester and Dublin to bring you our ultimate Gift Guide for 2020.
From ethical meat subscription boxes to the It trainer and hurry-up-2021 adventure activities, I’m so inspired by the creativity of so many of our members and friends, especially in the face of unforeseeable challenges this year has thrown their way. Did I mention the side hustles that deserve their turn in the spotlight, too? Plus: as we’ve left lockdown a little more aware of the impact of our shopping choices, I’ve given out brownie points for sustainability, too. Let’s get started:
For Parents & Little Ones…
Tiba + Marl
For the organised: Packing Cubes set
For the super stylish: Kaspar Knapsack Black
For the little ones: Mini Elwood Kids Backpack Silver
Why we love Tiba + Marl:
Notch up the cool points with a T+M pressie on Christmas morning – and feel virtuous, too. Huckletree West’s uber-cool parenting accessories duo donates a proportion of profits from each bag sold to three different UK & international carbon reduction projects. In addition to helping to reduce global CO2 emissions, these carbon offset projects also provide benefits such as increased biodiversity, improved local air quality, education, jobs, food security and health & well-being in developing countries. Plus, all their mailers are oxo-biodegradable. Oh, and they’ll look pretty awesome on that Christmas Day walk – whether you’re accompanied by little ones or not.
For parents who deserve a break: Babysitting Gift Cards
Why we love Bubble: Give the gift of a meal out/date night/five minutes peace. Huckletree West’s own Bubble are revolutionising childcare with their unique platform that allows parents to browse, book and pay for trusted childcare in minutes. It’s a simple and secure way for parents to connect with local babysitters and nannies, giving you some time to yourself. They’re also good samaritans – earlier this year, they launched an initiative to provide much-needed free childcare to support parents going through redundancy and help them get back on their feet.
For both the little scientists (and big ones!): Instant Snow
Why we love Mel Science: Day four of the Christmas break: Zoom quizzes are done to death and if we hear another TikTok dance challenge soundtrack, we’re leaving the internet for good… Over to Huckletree Shoreditch members MEL Science, who are looking to break the stereotype that science is boring, difficult, and only for certain types of people. They believe that every child is a scientist and they’re helping nurture children’s natural interest in science by giving them fun hands-on experiments to engage, serious, detailed explanations to learn and VR and AR technologies to dive deeper. Treat your budding Curie to a totally safe at-home experiment kit – from growing a galaxy in a bottle to creating Martian rust…
… And Pawrents, too
For four legged friends who’ve kept us going with cuddles this year: Crunchy Happy Hearts (add to your next box at checkout!)
Why we love Butternut Box: If you haven’t seen and instantly fallen in love with their hilarious TV spots, Butternut Box prep fresh dog food in perfect personalised portions for your furry little angel/devil. Huckletree West’s dog food subscription pioneers are leading the charge when it comes to doing right by the planet with recyclable packing and carbon neutral delivery. On top of that, for every new pup who signs up to the service, they donate a much-needed meal to a less fortunate dog that’s found itself homeless or in a shelter.
For the gent who enjoys a touch of support: Just Wears Trunks
Why we love JustWears: Grads of our pre-seed accelerator programme, team JustWears are smashing it (did you spot their appearance on Dragons’ Den?). On their mission to create the ‘underwear your balls deserve’, the team sampled over 1,000 fibres before settling on super-soft cellulosic fibre, MicroModal Air, a natural, high-performance fabric that is sustainably-sourced from Austria. It uses 10x less acreage to produce than cotton, will spend 50x less time in a landfill compared to polyester and Requires 20x less water to produce than cotton. Biodegradable and just a little bit cheeky: consider the traditional boxer gift utterly upgraded.
Cossie + Co
For the one-piece wonders: The Edie
For the midriff bearers: The Gemma Mix & Match
Why we love Cossie + Co: We stan a planet-conscious brand. Huckletree West members, luxury women’s swimwear pioneers, Cossie + Co are doing the most to make sure they’re keeping their environmental impact at an absolute minimium. Think conservative size runs to minimise over-production and waste, sourcing and producing with European partners that share the same ethos and making sure all their partners commit to the BSCI code of conduct, giving all employees a fair and safe working environment. Whether we’re indulging in staycations or venturing further afield for our 2021 hols, we’ll be doing it in style with Cossie + Co.
For members of the fandom: All I want for Christmas is Louis Theroux socks
Why we love Stand4Socks: Can socks change the world? These ethically made, socially conscious ones are sure taking a crack at it! Socks are the most requested item by homeless shelters. Huckletree Ancoats member and Stand4Socks Founder Josh created the most suitable sock for homeless people (aka SockTech!) and committed to donating a pair to those in need for each sold. To date, they’ve donated over 75,000 – incredible, right? We recommend gifting the pair dedicated to everyone’s favourite documentarian – check him out showing them off at Huckletree West!
For the Vintage addict: Secondlifevintage
For the denim diva: Daisybirddenium
For Vintage designer finds: BasementSix
Why we love Depop: Huckletree Ancoats member Depop is a global community buying, selling and connecting to make fashion more inclusive, diverse and less wasteful. Home to 21 million+ stylists, designers, artists, collectors, vintage sellers, sneakerheads and more, you’ll find unique, second hand but first rate clobber to see you into a more creative 2021. It’s not about the image, either. Back in June, they committed to implementing change and driving the progress needed to fully represent and truly celebrate the Black community within Depop. They’ve stayed true to their word by launching compulsory D&I training for all employees, hosting safe space conversations between their Black employees and launching their own Equity Collective (DEC), whose mission is to hold all of Depop accountable for the creation of a more equitable company.
For the one who makes a scene at the Christmas do: Kure Bazaar Nail Polish in Vegas
For the Skincare queen: Peep Club Eye Wand
Why we love Curate Beauty: Huckletree Alpha Programme grads Curate Beauty are reimagining the beauty buying wholesale model for today’s digital world. Using their unique wholesale marketplace platform, retailers can seamlessly enter the £30 billion beauty market without the time and resources traditionally needed to discover new brands, curate a product selection, and coordinate contracts and delivery. Now, us non-industry types can shop their expert pick of indie retailers just in time for Christmas – and get 15% off with the code FRIENDS15. Now Rudolph, how about updating that red nose with a little powder?
For the guy in your life who won’t appreciate a novelty tie: Emerald Five Piece Luxury Accessories Gift Set
Why we love Hidden Gent: Huckletree D2 member Ruairi Keran, MD of Evolve Marketing, was tired of spending a fortune on poorly made, run-of-the-mill gift sets on the high street – but didn’t really have the cash to splash on very expensive gifts for everyone (especially relatable in a COVID Christmas). He set about creating Hidden Gent, a hub for high-quality products that won’t break the bank and will delight the sartorially minded gent in your life.
For the one with the pout: HIGHR Red Set
Why we love HIGHR: We might not be smooching under the mistletoe but the selfies still need to be on point. Huckletree Alpha Programme grad Molly Hart has put her extensive background in the beauty industry to work and launched HIGHR Collective, a luxury, clean and sustainable line of lipsticks. Each lipstick is formulated in LA using 100% solar energy, they’re 100% carbon neutral and they use 100% vegan, plant-based ingredients (that’s just the start – find out more here). Pucker up, Santa baby.
Food, Glorious Food
For the home-based Nigellas: Big Mamma Cucina Popolare: Contemporary Italian Recipes
Why Big Mamma is so great: The brains behind uber-hyped Italian sports Gloria and Circolo Popolare, Huckletree Soho member Big Mamma is the name to know in foodie circles. It’s not all burrata and like-baiting lemon meringue pie – alongside The Collective UK, these guys are part of the Huckletree B Corp crew! They’ve installed renewable electric energy in 100% of their restaurants, they favour internal promotion and make annual donations to ThinkForward, a local charity which provides a personalised five-year coaching program that helps young people overcome barriers and reach their potential. All this, plus *that* truffle pasta? We’re already reaching for our apron…
For the Sophisticated: Smoked Beetroot Ketchup
For the Adventurous Foodie: Spicy Turmeric Mayo
Why we love Foraging Fox: Huckletree West members Foraging Fox are the condiment heroes you didn’t know you needed. They source all their tasty ingredients fresh and local wherever possible with all products being made with traditional methods in small batches here in the UK. All their bottles are fully recyclable and reduced plastic from their supply chain so their products are all now plastic-free on the shelf! Your Boxing Day turkey/tofurkey sandwich will never be the same…
For the no-booze crew who still want a bit of fun: Nocktail Mojito
Why we love Nocktail: There’s nothing worse than forgetting the soft drinks for your guests. Huckletree West members and non-alcoholic cocktail pros Nocktail use natural botanicals, extracts and flavours to create soft sips that hammer home it’s fly to be dry. Yes, they’re also rocking 100% recyclable packaging, and their drinks are vegan and sodium, GMO and Gluten-free! Vive le alcohol-free revolution!
For the Chocolate Addict: Gelato No2 in Ecuadorian Chocolate
Why we love Remeo: Firstly, what’s not to love about proper gelato and sorbetto? Think proper ingredients like Pistachio from Sicily and the highest quality fresh milk. Now that’s established, you can enjoy with a clear conscience as Huckletree West members Remeo make their desserts without any artificial additives and only 100% natural ingredients. Quality, health, sustainability and our environment at its core, with the team designing a jar made from 100% recycled plastic with lids made from 100% plant-based sugarcane plastic. Forget Christmas pudding, Remeo’s on the menu.
For the Coffee Connoisseur in your life: Wild Atlantic Way Coffee Christmas Gift Box
Why we love SocialTalent: It’s no secret: Team Huckletree are all big caffeine fiends (check out our Dublin coffee guide). Ireland has a really vibrant coffee scene and Huckletee D2 member and SocialTalent Enterprise Account Manager James Coffey wanted to showcase it to the world. Met Bean Delivered, a monthly single origin Irish coffee subscription. Your coffee-loving pals can enjoy a video from each roaster and get to know the people behind the beans, as they sip.
For the ethical carnivore: Shepherds Box
Why we love Always Grazing: Lockdown has changed our mindset towards food, with many of us emerging more aware of the impact of our shopping decisions on small businesses and the environment. Grads of our lockdown school for startups, Always Grazing is the coolest new kid on the foodie block… or should that be field? A regenerative meat collective, they source premium organic meat from small scale farms and deliver it to your door, with the unique story of the farmers, producers and butchers who have created your food.
Self Care Crew
For a masking maven: Beaudiani Aroma Mask 4 in 1
For your mate who’s been working too hard: TONIC15 X Jasmine Talks Self Care Set
Why we love Tonic15: Huckletree West member Jin and her team embraces diversity and inclusion and are on a mission to help make the beauty industry more inclusive, celebrating and valuing talent and uniqueness. In-house, they’re providing opportunities for BIPOC through their internship programme, making sure their social content is representative of the diversity reflected within society as well as working with influencers from diverse backgrounds. All this and the very best of K-Beauty curated by skin concern? Sign us up, Santa.
For those who’ll be keeping Christmas sexy (and safe): Condom and Lube Bundle
Why we love HANX: From underwear to under the covers. Alpha Programme grads HANX are doing the MOST to de-stigmatise the conversation around sex and sexual health but they’re also keeping it environmentally and socially conscious. The latex in their condoms is sourced from Fair Rubber certified plantations, their products are certified vegan, meaning they do not include any animals or use animal by-products and they’re also cruelty-free. During lockdown, they also launched their Black Lives Matter mentoring program and committed to amplifying the voices of Black founders, thought leaders and campaigners across their platforms.
For the suave gent in your life: Sons Gift Card
Why we love Sons: Forget novelty jumpers. Christmas is about giving your loved ones gifts they really, really want (even if they won’t ask for it). Hair loss is surprisingly normal – in fact, the majority of men will experience it. However, they don’t often talk about it, let alone realise that there are effective solutions out there. Huckletree Soho members Sons are encouraging men to be more proactive in tackling it with their clinically proven treatments, delivered straight to your door. They’re just one year old but already have treated over 10,000 men for hair loss and they’re only just getting started in the men’s wellness zone.
For the non-stop snorer: PureSleep – Stop Snoring Solution
For the ‘Can I stay in Bed forever’ friend: Dreampad Medium Support Pillow with Music & Sleep Technology
Why we love SleepScore Labs: Lockdown saw many of us experiencing weird dreams, fitful nights and the real headache: insomnia. This year, give the gift of blissful shut-eye with the Sleep experts over at SleepScore Labs. Our Huckletree D2 members are working hard to execute custom at-home sleep studies to test specific claims of sleep products, utilizing the world’s most accurate at-home sleep tracking technology. They’re also working hard to give back by supporting Sleeping Children Around the World, a nonprofit that helps millions of children get a bed kit for a restful night and a happier tomorrow. For every night of sleep tracked using the SleepScore app, they donate one cent to Sleeping Children Around the World for purchasing the bed kits these children so badly need. Sweet dreams.
Let’s Get Physical
For both the suitability and fashion-conscious: Running V1 in Black
Why we love Hylo: Huckletree Soho member Hylo is setting new standards for sustainability in the athletic industry. Founder Michael Doughty started Hylo because, as a professional footballer, he’d seen the lack of attention paid to climate change in the sporting world. Their high-quality running shoes are made by using waste products from corn production, re-using materials in future generations of shoes, and offsetting their carbon footprint to be carbon neutral. Get your order in quick – they were tipped in the Guardian’s best ethical running shoes for men…
For those excited to get back out into the wild: The Viking Loop Canoe Trip
Why we love eola: Our worlds got a whole lot smaller this year – so make plans to explore in 2021. Huckletree Shoreditch member eola is revolutionising booking unique experiences for small to large companies, bringing adventure lovers together with their dream experiences. From surfing in Cornwall to assault courses in Donegal, you’ll find the ideal adrenaline-fuelled activity to kick off your new year.
For the Lean, Mean, Muscle Machine: Customer Favourites Meal Kit Bundle
Why we love MuscleFood: Show some love to the fitness fan in your life with a very special delivery from Huckletree Ancoats members, MuscleFood. They’re all about helping athletes and the health-conscious reach and maintain their goals and ambitions. They provide you with the best lean meats and supplements on the market to make sure you get all the nutrients and protein you need at a cost-effective price. They’re also building systems to tackle modern slavery including specialist training for management and vetting all suppliers. Drop and give us 20…
Recover Yourself Fit
For the ‘new year, new me’ mate: Online Fitness & Nutrition Courses
Why we love Recover Yourself Fit: Frankly, after the life-changing 2020 we’ve just had, it’s a miracle we’re not all changing our names and assuming a new identity on another planet. Luckily, Huckletree Ancoats member Recover Yourself Fit has a less drastic solution. They’re an online fitness community with one goal – becoming their best self! But they’re not just about workouts, they empower you to make better food choices which in turn keep your mind sharp and focused. It’s all about three things – workouts, nutrition and most importantly accountability!
For The One Who Has Everything
The Fat Zine
For your mate with 10,000 followers: 2021 Calendar
Why we love The Fat Zine: Created by Huckletree Ancoats member Gina Tonic (writer at Vice, Refinery 29, The Independent and more), The Fat Zine pieces together art, illustration and perspectives from the fat community in a riotous, celebratory collaboration. As seen in Dazed Beauty, their 2021 Calendar features some of their favourite fat creatives’ bodies, shot by incredible photographer and artist Chloe Sheppard. Plus: it comes with a mini zine with a monthly perspective from the creatives featured. Cool status: 100%.
For the style-conscious jet setter: The Hunter Vanity – Green
Why we love Steamline Luggage: If the Instagram feed ‘accidentallywesanderson‘ came to life… it would be Huckletree D2 member, Steamline Luggage. Perfect for your retro-loving friend who likes to travel in style, Steamline Luggage produces vintage-inspired vegan and vegetarian premium luggage. As beautiful as they’re functional, their cases wouldn’t look out of place at the Grand Budapest Hotel – and if you keep them on display, they up your interior design game when you’re back home, too.
For future and aspiring CEOs: A copy of Alexa’s book, Entry Level Boss
Why we love Alexa: Feeling burnt out? Have the urge to do something really different in the new year? It’s time to focus on yourself – and your aspirations. After previously working in design for Facebook, leading cross-platform information architecture initiatives to optimize the company’s multi-billion-dollar advertising business, Alexa has now turned her hand (and expertise) to helping good people find great jobs, so that they can enact societal change from a professional position of influence and a personal position of financial safety. One for those with big plans…
For the After Eights haters: Limited Edition Christmas Box
Why we love Vinny:
Selection Boxes are officially over. Vegan-friendly snack purveyors Vinny are taking over the top spot when it comes to treats for our plant-based pals. You’ll spot their signature pink vending machines at Huckletree West and Shoreditch – and in a stroke of lockdown genius, the team introduced home deliveries of their plant-based treats. They’ve even created a limited edition festive box, filled with snacks for dipping into as you mainline Father Ted re-runs on Boxing Day. Now, back to our Tangy Worms…
Pick up a little something from our Gift Guide? We’d love to hear how it goes down!