I have a few ideas. I don’t know any other Permie types in real life, but I do give gifts that are in keeping with my own values, usually handmade or local, something useful or tasty.
- cloth napkins (I often use scrap fabric or secondhand fabric)
- gift bags: I sew up reusable drawstring gift bags to to wrap gifts
- fabric itself: for friends who sew, I wrap gifts in fabric furoshki style so they can make something with it.
- sewing kits: I find a pattern and fabric I think a friend will enjoy and do all the crummy laborious bits: measuring and cutting. I give them a copy of the pattern, the pre-cut pieces, hardware (is it’s a purse or such), a spool of matching thread, and extra fabric in case it’s needed. These have been a big hit.
- re-usable shopping bags
- dish towels
Knit/crochet: I’m still learning!
- knit scarves
- crocheted washcloths
- tea towels
- jam! I love giving homemade jam, apple, Pumpkin, or pear butters In small 4oz jelly jars. They fit nicely in the toe of a stocking and I like to make unusual jams.
- dehydrated berries/ baked good mix: I like to dehydrate our wild raspberries and give them in Pint mason jars or mix them into a dry pancake mix or scone mix in a Quart jar with instructions attached.
- herbal tea mixes: first time will be this year, but I made herbal tea mixes foraging what was available on our property (raspberry leaf, chamomile, pineapple weed, nettles, mint, etc). They’re loose leaf, and I haven’t decided if I ought to give them with a diffuser or not. Also I think I might gift them in pouches made from brown craft paper instead of mason jars, to reduce costs (shipping especially).
- spice/seasoning blends: not from our own garden (yet) but we have made seasoning mixes, flavored rock salt, etc. from bulk herbs and spices. It’s was very economical and useful
-baking mixes: bread, pancake, cookie, scone etc. mixes. Layer the ingredients in a quart jar and add a pretty label with a list of wet ingredients to add and instructions. I usually give these with a useful utensil- my favorite are big wooden mixing spoons made by a local artisan.
- coffee: not the best Permie-wise, but I have some friends who really enjoy it and I buy from local roasters. I try for single origin and fair trade beans.
-local maple syrup and honey
- seeds! I usually nag every gardener on my Christmas lists to look at my online spreadsheet of seeds and let me know what they’d like. I always send some in Christmas packages.
- wax sandwich wraps: can be pretty/fun pattered and much more earth friendly than ziplock bags for preserving sandwiches and such. There is a local company to me that makes them but they are widely available.
- rocks and shells. Seriously. My dad likes weird stuff and decorated his whole yard in neat unique rocks and such. Several years I shipped him some shells I’d found at the beach or a cool rock I found. I also have a friend who paints rocks for fun,
So if I find a really unique one that’s smooth enough to paint I send it to her.
- experiences: some folks I know just don’t get much quality family time. Each year I give one friend an annual family zoo pass. They go maybe 20 times a year and love it. Movie or theatre tickets are another gift I’ve given many times. Another idea for families with young kids are science/children’s museums.
- soaps, candles, etc. just nice smelling things that get used up and enjoyed. Often purchased from local makers.
Typically I do little crafts year round and put aside gift items as I make them. By November I have my gift drawer mostly filled up, and I fill in the rest from the winter markets. My goal is to give things that are useful or consumable. I do not gift trinkets or baubles that take up space or personal taste items like clothing or jewelry. If an item is purchased rather than made I focus on ethical products from local folk.