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Our Top 10 Eco Valentine's Day Gift Guide featuring ethical British businesses // The Natural Wedding Company

Our 2017 Eco Valentine’s Day Gift Guide 

Samantha and I are sharing our favourite finds for a possible Eco Valentine’s Day gift for your loved one – women, men, and even a gift from your little ones. We’ve stuck to all UK based businesses and artisans, most of them small independent businesses. You’ll also find we’ve tried to include ideas across a span of costs, with only one true ‘blow the budget’ gift.

In putting together this guide we discovered that neither of us celebrate Valentine’s Day in a big way. I’m sure lots of people choose to celebrate their love and gratitude towards each other on a daily basis. But for those who are looking to give something special or just a token of their love, here are some ideas.

Personalised Valentine’s Biscuits

Personalised Valentine's Day biscuits // The Kitsch Hen // The Natural Wedding Company

The Kitsch Hen is run by a former TNWC Real Bride, Caroline (part one + part two of her wedding is not to be missed). Her iced biscuits are homemade from locally sourced ingredients, and all handstamped. We love this option because it can be personalised to a meaningful message – lyrics from ‘your’ song, a love quote from your favourite novel, or just a simple ‘I Love You’. A scrumptious Eco Valentine’s Day gift.

£12 for 6 personalised biscuits – Buy them here

You Are My Favourite Valentine’s Day Card

You Are My Favourite Valentine's Day card // Lucy Says I Do // The Natural Wedding Company

Our friend Lucy Says I Do always has a fab offering of Valentine’s Day cards, and we love this design. Short and sweet, perfect for anyone not wanting to give an overly mushy card full of text. Printed onto FSC approved card and with a brown kraft envelope it’s a great card for the eco-chic.

£3.25 – Buy it here

Fairtrade Gold Heart Ruby Ring

Fairtrade gold heart ruby ring // Shakti Ellenwood // The Natural Wedding Company

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Seasonal British Valentine's bouquet - hellebores, daffodils, primroses, snowdrops, violets // Flowers from Forage For // The Natural Wedding Company

I love roses, but garden grown and in season, not on Valentine’s Day. But what does a seasonal British Valentine’s bouquet look like? We asked Anne-Marie from Forage For to make us a Valentine’s floral creation – she is quite renown for her stunning floral designs.

So from one corner of Suffolk in a walled garden, this is what was seasonal this year – and it’s worth noting that this has been a particularly unusual year, with unseasonable weather resulting in quite an array of flowers.

The above floral heart features bellis daisies, witch hazel, primroses, hellebores, snowdrops, heather, daffodils, violets, violas, scabious, muscari, blossom and cow parsley (yes really). This crazy unusual weather means that Anne-Marie still has one cow parsley plant that’s hung on all winter and is still flowering. Incredible.

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Wild twiggy heart wreath with berries for Valentine's Day // By Lock Cottage Flowers // The Natural Wedding Company

Today it’s all about creating seasonal Valentine’s wreaths – I particularly love Alice’s wild and twiggy heart with its bright red berries. These could be used to decorate your door this weekend or the smaller heart wreath would make a great DIY project for a wedding.

In case you missed it, on Monday we shared how to create a hellebore moss winter wreath as part of a new blog series called Wreaths Throughout The Seasons with our friend Alice from Lock Cottage Flowers. We’re hoping to inspire you to start putting up seasonal wreaths on your front door or in your home at times other than just Christmas.

Over to Alice…

How to make a seasonal Valentine’s wreath

This first Valentine’s wreath is made from British parvifolia (small leafed eucalyptus – smells divine) and dried lavender which isn’t too visible here, but is very fragrant. These smaller wreaths are terrific for hanging on a small space in the kitchen, or hanging on a doorknob. For weddings they make terrific chairbacks.

I used heavy duty garden wire – the kind used for wall training roses – a coat hanger could be taken apart and used as well. Don’t worry if the heart is slightly wonky – this is preferable.

Learn how to make a heart-shaped eucalyptus and lavender wreath // By Lock Cottage Flowers // The Natural Wedding Company

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valentines_seasonal_british_flowers

Just 5 days until Valentine’s Day!  My plan today is to convince you to buy or ask for a bunch of beautiful, British grown flowers for Valentine’s Day this year. I had wanted to dedicate more time and promotion to this wonderful campaign that is happening, but a sweet baby is consuming oodles of my attention and time.

The main objective of my message is simple: Buy British flowers. There are so many wonderful flower farmers growing stunning, seasonal British flowers (yes, even in damp dark February!), and lots of florists who buy British grown blooms. Let’s support these fab small growers and businesses, push aside that bouquet of imported and rather stiff looking red roses, and celebrate this year with a bunch of something seasonal and grown with a whole lot of love.

Still not convinced that there are pretty seasonal blooms to be bought from Britain this Valentine’s? Well now I’m going to bombard you with a whole stream of pretty pictures of what these skilled flower farmers are growing right now. They include tulips, anemones, narcissi, snowdrops, iris, pussy willow and more!

(I’ve included links below each picture to the flower farmer/grower/florist who’s flowers they are, where they’re based – in case you’re local – and do visit their website as many of them delivery nationwide)

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The Flower Mill Cornwall :: Cornwall

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Cherfold Cottage Flowers :: Surrey/West Sussex

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Whilst not being a huge fan of Valentine’s Day, I think it’s lovely to celebrate being in love – love for your family, your friends, the world, and of course your special someone.

So I’ve put together my top tips for sharing your love during this loved-up time of year – and for planning a more eco-friendly, ethical or natural wedding.

A romantic sustainable meal for two…


Images:
Cotswold Cooks; Organic Buffet; Cotswold Cooks; ChangeKitchen; Organic Buffet; Easy Gourmet

Say ‘no’ to the chain restaurants and find somewhere near to you from The Sustainable Restaurant Association’s directory of sustainable restaurants in the UK.  If you’re near to Dover, why not book a meal at The Coastguard pub and restaurant and enjoy a dinner of local produce.  Or, for a dinner of organic food and locally caught seafood with a difference how about Cafebarge – a Dutch barge in Argyll.

Those getting married who want a menu full of ethical, organic, local or seasonal ingredients should look no further than some fabulous caters like Cotswold Cooks (Wiltshire), Easy Gourmet (London), ChangeKitchen (Midlands), Eco Cusine (London), Organic Buffet or Tabiah Wedding Services (specialising in Asian weddings).  More caterers be found on our directory.

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With Valentine’s Day fast approaching, look no further for beautiful natural gifts than Hea’ram-Skearam Soap Company.

Their new Valentine’s inspired treats are made from scratch at Suzanne’s kitchen table, using raw ingredients inspired by the beautiful surroundings of the Somerset Levels.

Special Valentine’s products include the ‘Be My Valentine Soap Chunk’ – a beautiful bar of silky smooth soap, handmade with natural oils, fragranced with white musk and sweet violets, and topped with rose buds and petals.

The soap comes hand wrapped in mulberry paper speckled with hearts and an ‘ellie poo’ paper wrap.

The ‘Be My Valentine Candle’ is made from natural eco-soya and is fragranced with a romantic blend of white musk, violets and red roses.  The candles are hand poured and are available in tins or jars.

If your Valentine loves nothing more than a soak in a hot bath, the ‘Be My Valentine Bath Bomb’ would be the ideal gift.  Gently fragranced and made from skin softening sodium bicarbonate, the bath bomb is heart-shaped and topped with a single rose bud.

The bath bomb comes wrapped and secured with a raffia tie.

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Rose Petal Heart

With Valentine’s Day just around that corner I thought it only right to start February with some beautiful handmade jewellery from one of our sponsors

There is also a fantastic 10% discount to readers of The Natural Wedding Company blog – just use the following discount code when ordering NW10.

Karina Anne is based in Suffolk and makes handmade unique jewellery including necklaces, bracelets and earrings.  She has a strong committment to making jewellery in a responsible way, and much of her jewellery is made from Fair Trade silver.

Blue lampwork bead bracelet

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