Audubon Holiday Gift Guide: Design Junkie

For the person who adores home goods and the Earth.

1. Hipcycle Insulator Pendant Light

This product gives glass insulators a bright second life. These insulators, once mass-produced for use on telegraph and telephone lines and on electric power lines, are now useless to industry thanks to new technology. Hipcycle, a company that aims to “upcycle” used items, thus diverting them from landfills, has transformed these discarded objects into stylish light fixtures. Electrify any room with these unique hanging fixtures, which come in blue, clear, or aqua.


Price: $150

2. SodaStream

These days Fizzy Lifting drink isn’t just for Charlie of chocolate factory fame. Get bubbly with it at home while lowering your carbon footprint, thanks to seltzer maker SodaStream. After inserting CO2 canisters into the sleek plastic or stainless steel case, simply screw in a bottle filled with tap water and press a button. It’s the perfect marriage of conservation and convenience: It cuts down on the production, transportation, and disposal of plastic, which accounts for 12 percent of our country’s municipal trash. The product isn’t cheap, but for an average-size family, it pays for itself in no time.


Price: $29.99 for carbonator; $79.95–$199.95 for machines

3. Record Bowl

Vinyl is back, but not for listening to music this time. Rather, Vinylux is reincarnating vinyl for a wide range of products, including coasters, clocks, and mirrors. Love that old 45 but ditched the record player ages ago? Be reminded of your long-ago musical love affair with a container made from your favorite album. “Each bowl is created from a single record, which has been molded in to a vessel form,” states the Vinylux website. If you don’t have a record to send in, choose one from a dozen musical genres the company offers, including rock, blues, disco, show tunes, and classical.


Price: $25–$30

4. Wine Glasses

Glass is loads better than plastic when it comes to bottles, as long as the glass eventually gets recycled. The Green Glass Company got creative here, reclaiming old bottles and turning them into vases, water glasses, votive-candle holders, and much more. They’re beautiful containers that give new meaning to the term “recycled.” Some favorites include the goblets made from old green Bordeaux bottles and the pitchers.


Price: $40–$72.50

5. Woolly Pocket Wall Planter

Create a living wall inside your home with the Woolly Pocket Wall Planter. Instead of traditional pots or planters that hang from a ceiling hook, these innovative modular gardening containers attach to the wall. Handmade in the United States from an industrial felt made of 100 percent recycled plastic bottles, these planters come in chocolate or black. The indoor version contains a moisture barrier to prevent dripping, while the outdoor ones are unlined so water can drain.


Price: $39–$41

“The views expressed in user comments do not reflect the views of Audubon. Audubon does not participate in political campaigns, nor do we support or oppose candidates.”